A model of the synchronic self

Consciousness and Cognition 16 (2):533-550 (2007)
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The phenomenology of the self includes the sense of control over one’s body and mind, of being bounded in body and mind, of having perspective from within one’s body and mind and of being extended in time. I argue that this phenomenology is to be accounted for by a set of five dissociable cognitive capacities that compose the self. The focus of this paper is on the four capacities that compose the synchronic self: the agentiveB self, which underlies the sense of control over one’s body; the boundaryB self, which underlies the sense of being bounded within one’s body; the agentiveM self which underlies the sense of control over one’s thoughts; and the boundaryM self which underlies the sense of being bounded within one’s mind. I model the agentiveB and agentiveM selves as parts of the motor control system and the boundaryB self as the capacity to form and integrated map of the body. I point to the delusion of thought broadcast as a possible source of evidence for future research on the boundaryM self.



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Glenn Carruthers
Macquarie University (PhD)