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Narrative and ConsciousnessLiterature, Psychology and the Brain$
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Gary D. Fireman, Ted E. McVay, and Owen J. Flanagan

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780195140057

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195140057.001.0001

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Narrative and the Emergence of a Consciousness of Self

Narrative and the Emergence of a Consciousness of Self

(p.16) (p.17) 2 Narrative and the Emergence of a Consciousness of Self
Narrative and Consciousness

Katherine Nelson

Oxford University Press

Conscious awareness has not been properly addressed, since an individual's phenomenology and a child's perspective—two seemingly relevant aspects of conscious awareness—have not before been considered. The author believes that accounting for a child's viewpoint is important, because this will allow us to realize that the function and structure of the mind undergo certain changes. This chapter attempts to look into the hypothesis regarding how a new level of consciousness is believed to be brought about by early childhood experiences and how such may be associated with a new sense of self that occurs across several different social realities and times. Linguistic, particularly narrative, human communicative discourse is said to have made the formation of this new level possible, and that such involves other emerging levels, systems which are continuously developing: the development attributed to the consciousness of a child, and the sense of self that is parallel to it in the social world.

Keywords:   conscious awareness, individual phenomenology, child's perspective, mind function, mind structure, communicative discourse, narrative discourse, linguistic discourse, consciousness

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