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Tense Bees and Shell-Shocked CrabsAre Animals Conscious?$
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Michael Tye

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190278014

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190278014.001.0001

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Experience and Consciousness

Experience and Consciousness

(p.12) 2 Experience and Consciousness
Tense Bees and Shell-Shocked Crabs

Michael Tye

Oxford University Press

What exactly is the connection between consciousness and experiences? The most plausible view is a simple one: a mental state is conscious” if and only if it is an experience—something that it can be said it is like to undergo it. This chapter considers objections to this view from both the higher-order-thought theory of consciousness, which holds that consciousness necessitates an awareness of mental states, as well the phenomenal consciousness / access consciousness distinction, that is, between consciousness that is just experience and consciousness that is available for rational control of speech and action and is inferentially promiscuous. It is argued that neither of these objections are compelling.

Keywords:   animals, experience, consciousness, higher-order-thought theory, HOT theory, phenomenal consciousness, access consciousness, self-consciousness, the mirror test, Block

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