The location and boundaries of consciousness: a structural realist approach

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Sammanfattning

Despite the remarkable progress made in consciousness research during recent decades, there is still no sign of a general agreement about the location of its object. According to internalists, consciousness resides inside the brain. According to externalists, consciousness is partly constituted by elements or aspects of the environment. Internalism comports better with the existence of dreams, hallucinations and sensory imaging. Externalism seems to provide a more promising basis for understanding how we can experience the world and refer to the content of our consciousness. I argue that the framework of structural realism supports internalism and helps to reveal the reasons behind the apparent explanatory success of the externalist approach. More specifically, structural realism supports the view that the structure of our consciousness is always present in our neural processes and only sometimes (additionally) in an extended system that includes elements of the environment.

Originalspråkengelska
TidskriftReview of Philosophy and Psychology
Volym9
Nummer3
Sidor (från-till)523-537
Antal sidor15
ISSN1878-5158
DOI
StatusPublicerad - sep. 2018
MoE-publikationstypA1 Tidskriftsartikel-refererad

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