The liabilities of mobility: A selection pressure for the transition to consciousness in animal evolution

Consciousness and Cognition 14 (1):89-114 (2005)
The issue of the biological origin of consciousness is linked to that of its function. One source of evidence in this regard is the contrast between the types of information that are and are not included within its compass. Consciousness presents us with a stable arena for our actions—the world—but excludes awareness of the multiple sensory and sensorimotor transformations through which the image of that world is extracted from the confounding influence of self-produced motion of multiple receptor arrays mounted on multijointed and swivelling body parts. Likewise excluded are the complex orchestrations of thousands of muscle movements routinely involved in the pursuit of our goals. This suggests that consciousness arose as a solution to problems in the logistics of decision making in mobile animals with centralized brains, and has correspondingly ancient roots
Keywords *Animal Ethology  *Consciousness States  *Motor Processes  *Neurobiology  *Sensory Neurons  Decision Making  Phylogenesis  Theory of Evolution
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1016/S1053-8100(03)00002-3
 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: 30,781
External links

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
Facing Up to the Problem of Consciousness.David J. Chalmers - 1995 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 2 (3):200-19.
Characteristics of Dissociable Human Learning Systems.R. Shanks David & John Mark F. St - 1994 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 17 (3):367-395.

View all 24 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
The Octopus and the Unity of Consciousness.Sidney Carls-Diamante - forthcoming - Biology and Philosophy:1-19.
Neural Darwinism and Consciousness.Anil K. Seth & Bernard J. Baars - 2005 - Consciousness and Cognition 14 (1):140-168.

View all 14 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Added to PP index

Total downloads
105 ( #49,703 of 2,199,498 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
3 ( #97,471 of 2,199,498 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature