Time and the observer

Behavioral and Brain Sciences 15 (2):183-201 (1992)
Abstract
Two models of consciousness are contrasted with regard to their treatment of subjective timing. The standard Cartesian Theater model postulates a place in the brain where "it all comes together": where the discriminations in all modalities are somehow put into registration and "presented" for subjective judgment. In particular, the Cartesian Theater model implies that the temporal properties of the content-bearing events occurring within this privileged representational medium determine subjective order. The alternative, Multiple Drafts model holds that whereas the brain events that discriminate various perceptual contents are distributed in both space and time in the brain, and whereas the temporal properties of these various events are determinate, none of these temporal properties determine subjective order, since there is no single, constitutive "stream of consciousness" but rather a parallel stream of conflicting and continuously revised contents. Four puzzling phenomena that resist explanation by the standard model are analyzed: two results claimed by Libet, an apparent motion phenomenon involving color change (Kolers and von Grunau), and the "cutaneous rabbit" (Geldard and Sherrick) an illusion of evenly spaced series of "hops" produced by two or more widely spaced series of taps delivered to the skin. The unexamined assumptions that have always made the Cartesian Theater model so attractive are exposed and dismantled. The Multiple Drafts model provides a better account of the puzzling phenomena, avoiding the scientific and metaphysical extravagances of the Cartesian Theater.
Keywords consciousness   discrimination   illusion   localization   memory   mental timing   perception   subjective experience
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1017/S0140525X00068229
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
Edit this record
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Mark as duplicate
Request removal from index
Revision history
Download options
Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 30,798
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
The Elusive Quale.Howard Rachlin - 1995 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 18 (4):692.
An Appearance of Succession Requires a Succession of Appearances.Oliver Rashbrook - 2013 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 87 (3):584-610.
Content and the Stream of Consciousness.Matthew Soteriou - 2007 - Philosophical Perspectives 21 (1):543–568.

View all 190 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total downloads
72 ( #75,810 of 2,202,680 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #149,904 of 2,202,680 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature