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Consciousness: An Introduction
     

Consciousness: An Introduction

by Susan Blackmore
 

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Is there a theory that explains the essence of consciousness? Or is consciousness itself just an illusion? The 'last great mystery of science', consciousness is a topic that was banned from serious research for most of the last century, but is now an area of increasing popular interest, as well as a rapidly expanding area of study for students of psychology,

Overview

Is there a theory that explains the essence of consciousness? Or is consciousness itself just an illusion? The 'last great mystery of science', consciousness is a topic that was banned from serious research for most of the last century, but is now an area of increasing popular interest, as well as a rapidly expanding area of study for students of psychology, philosophy and neuroscience. This ground-breaking textbook by best-selling author Susan Blackmore was the first of its kind to bring together all the major theories of consciousness studies, from those based on neuroscience to those based on quantum theory or Eastern philosophy.

The book examines topics such as how subjective experiences arise from objective brain processes, the basic neuroscience of consciousness, altered states of consciousness, out of body and near death experiences and the effects of drugs, dreams and meditation. It also explores the nature of self, the possibility of artificial consciousness in robots, and the question of whether animals are conscious.

The new edition has been fully revised to include the latest developments in neuroscience, brain scanning techniques, and artificial consciousness and robotics. The new website includes self-assessment exercises, advanced further reading, flashcards and MCQs.

For all those intrigued by what it means to be, to exist, this book could radically transform your understanding of your own consciousness.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
How can the subjective feelings of consciousness arise from the firing of synapses? Is there an "added something" that causes us to be self-aware? Or could it be that consciousness is just an illusion or an ephemeral byproduct? We don't know the answers-indeed, we are only beginning to formulate the questions, even though philosophers have been considering these issues for centuries. Though this work is intended as a college textbook, Blackmore (The Meme Machine) makes accessible to general readers the evolution of consciousness, machine intelligence, dreams, and the paranormal, drawing on philosophical, neuroscientific, and quantum theory perspectives from both the West and the East. The author, also a practitioner of Zen meditation, ends with chapters on Buddhism, which, she claims, explores these questions from an experiential perspective. The explanations of abstruse arguments are clear, and the writing is livelier than is the norm in textbooks. Recommended for all academic and large public libraries; Rita Carter's equally fine Exploring Consciousness is another good choice that covers the same core material in a less expensive hardcover format.-Mary Ann Hughes, Neill P.L., Pullman, WA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
From the Publisher
"The main strength of Consciousness is that it covers all the cool stuff, all the consciousness phenomena that really capture the imagination. A great virtue is that the book is current; there hasn't been anything I wanted to talk about that isn't in it. You bet I will adopt the second edition."—William Lycan, University of North Carolina

"A strong virtue of Consciousness is that it is thoroughly interdisciplinary. Terrific coverage of attention and memory, empirical stuff, the unity of consciousness, damaged brains, hallucinations, and dreams—really first-rate material."—Andrew Pessin, Connecticut College

"Consciousness is an excellent companion to a primary source reader in a philosophy of mind course, or a stand-alone text in an introductory course on consciousness."—Lisa Portmess, Gettysburg College

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781444164336
Publisher:
Taylor & Francis
Publication date:
11/26/2013
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
560
File size:
13 MB
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Meet the Author

Susan Blackmore is visiting Professor of Psychology, University of Plymouth

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