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Title: Theories of Consciousness as Reflexivity
Contributor(s): Peters, Frederic  (author)
Publication Date: 2013
DOI: 10.1111/phil.12018
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Abstract: Consciousness is best understood in context, as one element of an interactive waking state in which the greater part of cognitive processing takes place in a nonconscious fashion. But if conscious and nonconscious processing are combined in the waking state, what distinguishes the former from the latter, what is consciousness, and what is its purpose? The answer to the second question depends crucially on our conclusion regarding the first. What is the property in virtue of which a state is conscious rather than nonconscious? In the following, it will be argued that of the answers most frequently proposed - intentionality, subjectivity, accessibility, reflexivity - only the final characteristic, reflexive, autonoetic awareness, is unique to the conscious state. Reflexivity can best be explained not as the product of a self-representational (SR) data structure, but as the expression of a recursive processing regime, in which cognition registers the properties of the processing state to a greater extent than properties of the content represented. And the principal characteristic of a reflexive processing state is cognitive reflexivity or autonoetic awareness.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: The Philosophical Forum, 44(4), p. 341-372
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Inc
Place of Publication: United States of America
ISSN: 0031-806X
Field of Research (FOR): 170299 Cognitive Science not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Outcome Codes: 970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
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