Consciousness and the "causal paradox"

Behavioral and Brain Sciences 19 (3):538-542 (1996)

Authors
Max Velmans
Goldsmiths College, University of London
Abstract
Viewed from a first-person perspective consciousness appears to be necessary for complex, novel human activity - but viewed from a third-person perspective consciousness appears to play no role in the activity of brains, producing a "causal paradox". To resolve this paradox one needs to distinguish consciousness of processing from consciousness accompanying processing or causing processing. Accounts of consciousness/brain causal interactions switch between first- and third-person perspectives. However, epistemically, the differences between first- and third-person access are fundamental. First- and third-person accounts are complementary and mutually irreducible.
Keywords function of consciousness  consciousness-brain causal interaction  causal paradox  first- and third-person accounts  psychological complementarity  perspectival switching  mind-body interaction
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1017/S0140525X00082078
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 38,955
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.
Is Human Information Processing Conscious?Max Velmans - 1991 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 14 (4):651-69.
Characteristics of Dissociable Human Learning Systems.David R. Shanks & Mark F. St John - 1994 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 17 (3):367-447.

View all 20 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

How Could Conscious Experiences Affect Brains?Max Velmans - 2002 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 9 (11):3-29.
Reflexive Monism.Max Velmans - 2007 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 15 (2):5-50.
Psychophysical Nature.Max Velmans - 2009 - In Harald Atmanspacher & Hans Primas (eds.), Recasting Reality: Wolfgang Pauli's Philosophical Ideas and Contemporary Science. Springer. Berlin: Springer-Verlag. pp. 115-134..

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

The Limits of Neuropsychological Models of Consciousness.Max Velmans - 1995 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 18 (4):702-703.
The Personhood of the Human Embryo.John F. Crosby - 1993 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 18 (4):399-417.
Understanding Consciousness, Edition 2.Max Velmans - 2009 - Routledge/Psychology Press.
Consciousness and Intentionality.John Barresi - 2007 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 14 (1-2):77-93.
When Perception Becomes Conscious.Max Velmans - 1999 - British Journal of Psychology 90 (4):543-566.
Goodbye to Reductionism: Complementary First and Third-Person Approaches to Consciousness.Max Velmans - 1998 - In Stuart R. Hameroff, Alfred W. Kaszniak & A. C. Scott (eds.), Toward a Science of Consciousness II. Cambridge: Mass.: MIT Press. pp. 45-52.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total views
35 ( #207,090 of 2,319,369 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
6 ( #217,562 of 2,319,369 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature