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Mind in Life: Biology, Phenomenology, and the Sciences of Mind
     

Mind in Life: Biology, Phenomenology, and the Sciences of Mind

by Evan Thompson
 

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ISBN-10: 0674057511

ISBN-13: 9780674057517

Pub. Date: 09/30/2010

Publisher: Harvard

How is life related to the mind? The question has long confounded philosophers and scientists, and it is this so-called explanatory gap between biological life and consciousness that Evan Thompson explores in Mind in Life.

Thompson draws upon sources as diverse as molecular biology, evolutionary theory, artificial life, complex systems theory, neuroscience

Overview

How is life related to the mind? The question has long confounded philosophers and scientists, and it is this so-called explanatory gap between biological life and consciousness that Evan Thompson explores in Mind in Life.

Thompson draws upon sources as diverse as molecular biology, evolutionary theory, artificial life, complex systems theory, neuroscience, psychology, Continental Phenomenology, and analytic philosophy to argue that mind and life are more continuous than has previously been accepted, and that current explanations do not adequately address the myriad facets of the biology and phenomenology of mind. Where there is life, Thompson argues, there is mind: life and mind share common principles of self-organization, and the self-organizing features of mind are an enriched version of the self-organizing features of life. Rather than trying to close the explanatory gap, Thompson marshals philosophical and scientific analyses to bring unprecedented insight to the nature of life and consciousness. This synthesis of phenomenology and biology helps make Mind in Life a vital and long-awaited addition to his landmark volume The Embodied Mind: Cognitive Science and Human Experience (coauthored with Eleanor Rosch and Francisco Varela).

Endlessly interesting and accessible, Mind in Life is a groundbreaking addition to the fields of the theory of the mind, life science, and phenomenology.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780674057517
Publisher:
Harvard
Publication date:
09/30/2010
Pages:
568
Sales rank:
879,256
Product dimensions:
5.80(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.30(d)

Table of Contents

Preface

Acknowledgements

Part I: The Enactive Approach

1. Cognitive Science and Human Experience

2. The Phenomenological Connection

3. Autonomy and Emergence

4. The Structure of Behavior

Part II: Life in Mind

5. Autopoiesis: The Organization of the Living

6. Life and Mind: The Philosophy of the Organism

7. Laying Down a Path in Walking: Development and Evolution

Part III: Consciousness in Life

8. Life Beyond the Gap

9. Sensorimotor Subjectivity

10. Look Again: Consciousness and Mental Imagery

11. Temporality and the Living Present

12. Primordial Dynamism: Emotion and Valence

13. Empathy and Enculturation

Appendix 1: Husserl and Cognitive Science

Appendix 2: Emergence and the Problem of Downward Causation

References

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