Consciousness and Cognition 4 (1):22-51 (1995)

Patients with right parietal lesions often deny their paralysis , but do they have "tacit" knowledge of their paralysis? I devised three novel tests to explore this. First, the patients were given a choice between a bimanual task vs a unimanual one . They chose the former on 17 of 18 trials and, surprisingly, showed no frustration or learning despite repeated failed attempts. I conclude that they have no tacit knowledge of paralysis . Second, I used a "virtual reality box" to convey the optical illusion to the patient that she was moving her paralyzed left hand up and down to the rhythm of a metronome, and yet she showed no sign of surprise. Third, I irrigated patient BM′s left ear canal with cold water, a procedure that is known to shift that patient′s spatial frame of reference by stimulating the vestibular system. Surprisingly, this allowed her "repressed" memory of paralysis to come to the surface; she said she had been paralyzed continuously for several days. I suggest that the vestibular stimulation produces these remarkable effects by mimicking REM sleep. These patients also emply a whole arsenal of grossly exaggerated Freudian "defense mechanisms" to account for their paralysis. To explain this, I propose that in normal individuals the left hemisphere ordinarily deals with small, local anomalies by trying to impose consistency but, when the anomaly exceeds threshold, an interaction with the right hemisphere forces a "paradigm shift". A failure of this process, in patients with right hemisphere damage, might partially account for anosognosia. Finally, I present a new conceptual framework that may help link several psychological and neurological phenomena such as Freudian defense mechanisms, vestibular stimulation, anosognosia, memory repression, visual illusions, anterograde amnesia, REM sleep, dreaming, and humor
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1006/ccog.1995.1002
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 52,704
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

The Astonishing Hypothesis.Francis Crick & J. Clark - 1994 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 1 (1):10-16.
The Astonishing Hypothesis.Francis Crick - 1994 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 37:267.

View all 9 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

The Evolution of Misbelief.Ryan T. McKay & Daniel C. Dennett - 2009 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 32 (6):493.
The Epistemic Innocence of Motivated Delusions.Lisa Bortolotti - 2015 - Consciousness and Cognition (33):490-499.
Embodiment, Ownership and Disownership.Frédérique de Vignemont - 2011 - Consciousness and Cognition 20 (1):1-12.

View all 35 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

The Role of Perceptual Load in Visual Awareness.Nilli Lavie - 2006 - Brain Research. Special Issue 1080 (1):91-100.
Attention and Awareness in Synchrony.Catherine Tallon-Baudry - 2004 - Trends in Cognitive Sciences 8 (12):523-525.


Added to PP index

Total views
108 ( #85,913 of 2,340,248 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #333,940 of 2,340,248 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes