Contribution à la Théorie de la Conscience, Conçue comme Activite du Cerveau

Dissertation, Université Paris 7 (1998)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

This thesis explores the possibility of theoretically conceiving consciousness as an activity of the brain. Objections, based on the concept of qualia, to the identification of consciousness with a brain activity are refuted. Phenomenal consciousness is identified with access-consciousness. Consciousness is conceived as a higher order processing of informational states of the brain. The state of consciousness represents an integration of prior nonconscious states. Libet’s research on the timing of conscious experience is reviewed and analyzed. His hypothesis of backward referral is rejected. Since specific brain activity (the readiness potential) precedes the conscious intention, the implications of this fact on the concepts of volition and free will are discussed. Non-deliberate voluntary acts are performed without a prior consciousness of the intention to perform them. Conversely, the decision to perform a deliberate act is influenced by consciousness of the intention. Free will is viewed as compatible with the causal determination of mental processes. The theory is successfully applied to the different contents of consciousness: consciousness of perceptions, of bodily sensations, of actions, of memories, of ideas, of thoughts, of language, of affective states, of beliefs, of desires, of oneself and consciousness of being conscious. The relation between the theory of consciousness and psychoanalysis is also explored. Psychoanalysis is seen as compatible with the proposed theory, which is able to enlighten some aspects of the process of becoming conscious in psychoanalytic treatment. The general approach is interdisciplinary : the theory must take into account constraints derived from philosophy, neurophysiology, psychology, neuropsychology, etc. Consciousness is conceived, not as a property of some mental states, but as a specific higher-order activity, based on lower-order nonconscious activities.

Links

PhilArchive

External links

  • This entry has no external links. Add one.
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Conscious intention and brain activity.Patrick Haggard & Benjamin W. Libet - 2001 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 8 (11):47-63.
Phenomenal concepts and higher-order experiences.Peter Carruthers - 2004 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (2):316-336.
Volition and the readiness potential.Gilberto Gomes - 1999 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 6 (8-9):59-76.
Addressing Higher-Order Misrepresentation with Quotational Thought.Vincent Picciuto - 2011 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 18 (3-4):109-136.
A Higher-order, Dispositional Theory of Qualia.John O'dea - 2007 - Annals of the Japan Association for Philosophy of Science 15 (2):81-93.
The Collapse Argument.Joseph Gottlieb - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (1):1-20.
Higher-Order Awareness, Misrepresentation, and Function.David Rosenthal - 2012 - Higher-Order Awareness, Misrepresentation and Function 367 (1594):1424-1438.
The HOROR Theory of Phenomenal Consciousness.Richard Brown - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (7):1783-1794.

Analytics

Added to PP
2018-07-30

Downloads
437 (#25,285)

6 months
106 (#7,720)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Citations of this work

Volition and the readiness potential.Gilberto Gomes - 1999 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 6 (8-9):59-76.

Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references