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Consciousness in Contemporary Science$
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A. J. Marcel and E. Bisiach

Print publication date: 1992

Print ISBN-13: 9780198522379

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198522379.001.0001

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On changing one's mind: a possible function of consciousness

On changing one's mind: a possible function of consciousness

(p.369) 17 On changing one's mind: a possible function of consciousness
Consciousness in Contemporary Science

Keith Oatley

Oxford University Press

This chapter aims to discuss the function of consciousness within a broad framework of cognitive science and phenomenology, and to relate these two approaches to each other. This chapter's treatment of the role of consciousness, while sharing the computational approach, is quite different. It proposes a tentative taxononomy, partly of the typical phenomenology and content of consciousness. The chapter distinguishes four aspects of consciousness, two involuntary and two voluntary. The latter are built on the former and serve the functions of developing plans and goals based on a model of the self. This chapter emphasizes the social construction of consciousness, providing persuasive illustrations. The bringing together of the domain of emotions with insights from the artificial intelligence metaphor is an exciting enterprise.

Keywords:   consciousness, cognitive science, phenomenology, computational approach, artificial intelligence

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