An introduction to the science of consciousness

Velmans, Max. 1996. An introduction to the science of consciousness. In: Max Velmans, ed. The Science of Consciousness: Psychological, Neuropsychological and Clinical Reviews. London: Routledge, pp. 1-22. ISBN 0415110815 [Book Section]

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This introductory chapter was written for Velmans (ed.) (1996) The Science of Consciousness: Psychological, Neuropsychological and Clinical Reviews, at that time an innovative book of review articles on the emerging science of consciousness, specifically aimed at undergraduate and postgraduate students by experts in the relevant fields. Following on a brief history, the chapter moves on to definitions of consciousness and background philosophical issues, and then introduces a unified, non-reductionist scientific approach. It then summarises major issues for studies of consciousness in cognitive psychology, including studies of attention, memory, the extent of preconscious analysis and the relation of consciousness more generally to human information processing. It then turns to the neuropsychology of consciousness, starting with some apparent neural requirements for the transition from preconscious to conscious states, various clinical dissociations of consciousness, conditions for integration (or binding) and, finally, clinical applications, including different forms of mind/body interaction and evidence for the causal efficacy of mental states. The chapter concludes that while some of the ancient problems of consciousness remain unsolved, its study has become the subject of a rapidly developing science.

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26 Apr 2019 14:47

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26 Apr 2019 14:47


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