Consciousness: Varieties of intrinsic theory

Journal of Mind and Behavior 14 (2):107-32 (1993)
A mental-occurrence instance is conscious if it is an object of inner consciousness; that is, if a mental-occurrence instance occurs and is conscious on that occasion, one is conscious of it on the spot without having to take notice first of something else. In contrast, Freud's preconscious and unconscious psychical processes, whenever they occur, are examples of nonconscious mental-occurrence instances, which are not objects of inner consciousness; that is, one has no consciousness of them unless one takes notice of something else and infers, therefrom, their occurrence. Determining how inner consciousness transpires will soon have high priority on the scientific agendas of psychologists of consciousness. To assist in their forthcoming explanatory search, I present a straightforward survey of a number of intrinsic theories of consciousness. Intrinsic theory holds that any conscious mental-occurrence instance has itself as object, plus whatever else it may give consciousness of; it is conscious due to its own structure, not due to what happens next or later. Intrinsic theory differs from appendage theory and mental-eye theory, which both hold that a mental-occurrence instance cannot be conscious on its own, cannot give any consciousness of itself, only of something else at most
Keywords Consciousness  Intrinsic  Mental States  Metaphysics
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