David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Communication and Cognition 34 (1):39-59 (2001)
Physicalists commonly argue that conscious experiences are nothing more than states of the brain, and that conscious qualia are observer-independent, physical properties of the external world. Although this assumes the 'mantle of science,' it routinely ignores the findings of science, for example in sensory physiology, perception, psychophysics, neuropsychology and comparative psychology. Consequently, although physicalism aims to naturalise consciousness, it gives an unnatural account of it. It is possible, however, to develop a natural, nonreductive, reflexive model of how consciousness relates to the brain and the physical world. This paper introduces such a model and how it construes the nature of conscious experience. Within this model the physical world as perceived (the phenomenal world) is viewed as part of conscious experience not apart from it. While in everyday life we treat this phenomenal world as if it is the "physical world", it is really just one biologically useful representation of what the world is like that may differ in many respects from the world described by physics. How the world as perceived relates to the world as described by physics can be investigated by normal science (e.g. through the study of sensory physiology, psychophysics and so on). This model of consciousness appears to be consistent with both third-person evidence of how the brain works and with first-person evidence of what it is like to have a given experience. According to the reflexive model, conscious experiences are really how they seem.
|Keywords||Consciousness Metaphysics Naturalism Phenomenology Physicalism Qualia|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Amie Thomasson (2008). Phenomenal Consciousness and the Phenomenal World. The Monist 91 (2):191-214.
Max Velmans (1993). A Reflexive Science of Consciousness. In G. R. Bock & James L. Marsh (eds.), Experimental and Theoretical Studies of Consciousness. (Ciba Foundation Symposium 174). 404--416.
Max Velmans (1994). A Reflexive Science of Consciousness. In G. R. Bock & James L. Marsh (eds.), Experimental and Theoretical Studies of Consciousness. (Ciba Foundation Symposium 174). 404--416.
David J. Chalmers (1995). Absent Qualia, Fading Qualia, Dancing Qualia. In Thomas Metzinger (ed.), Conscious Experience. Ferdinand Schoningh. 309--328.
Professor Max Velmans (2003). Is the World in the Brain, or the Brain in the World? (A Commentary on Lehar, S. Gestalt Isomorphism and the Primacy of Subjective Conscious Experience: A Gestalt Bubble Model, Behavioral and Brain Sciences, in Press). Velmans, Professor Max (2003) is the World in the Brain, or the Brain in the World? (A Commentary on Lehar, S. Gestalt Isomorphism and the Primacy of Subjective Conscious Experience.
Max Velmans (2007). Reflexive Monism. [Journal (Paginated)] (in Press) 15 (2):5-50.
Thomas W. Clark (2005). Killing the Observer. Journal of Consciousness Studies 12 (4-5):38-59.
Max Velmans (1990). Consciousness, Brain, and the Physical World. Philosophical Psychology 3 (1):77-99.
Max Velmans (2007). Where Experiences Are: Dualist, Physicalist, Enactive and Reflexive Accounts of Phenomenal Consciousness. [REVIEW] Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 6 (4):547-563.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads94 ( #11,744 of 1,096,899 )
Recent downloads (6 months)6 ( #40,366 of 1,096,899 )
How can I increase my downloads?