Measuring pain: An introspective look at introspection

Consciousness and Cognition 11 (4):582-592 (2002)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

The measurement of pain depends upon subjective reports, but we know very little about how research subjects or pain patients produce self-reported judgments. Representationalist assumptions dominate the field of pain research and lead to the critical conjecture that the person in pain examines the contents of consciousness before making a report about the sensory or affective magnitude of pain experience as well as about its nature. Most studies to date have investigated what Fechner termed “outer psychophysics”: the relationship between characteristics of an external stimulus and the magnitude and nature of pain experience. In contrast, Fechner originally envisioned that “inner psychophysics” should investigate the relationship between physiological states and subjective experience. Despite the lack of established research tradition, inner psychophysics has a potential utility in elucidating underlying mechanisms for the production of phenomenal self-report. We illustrate this, using causal modeling analyses of the accuracy of self-reported pain ratings from our laboratory. We submit that the results are inconsistent with representationalist assumptions. Converging trends from several domains of consciousness studies seem to suggest that we need to abandon the unquestioned doctrine of representationalism and search for a more viable framework for understanding the generation of subjective self-report

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 92,197

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Constructing pain: How pain hurts.Yutaka Nakamura & C. Chapman - 2002 - In Kunio Yasue, Marj Jibu & Tarcisio Della Senta (eds.), No Matter, Never Mind. John Benjamins.
Naturalism, introspection, and direct realism about pain.Murat Aydede - 2001 - Consciousness and Emotion 2 (1):29-73.
Pain perception, affective mechanisms, and conscious experience.C. Richard Chapman - 2004 - In Thomas Hadjistavropoulos & Kenneth D. Craig (eds.), Pain: Psychological Perspectives. pp. 59-85.
Distinguishing the Appearance from the Reality of Pain.Kevin Reuter - 2011 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 18 (9-10):94-109.

Analytics

Added to PP
2009-01-28

Downloads
99 (#176,166)

6 months
18 (#143,743)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?