Neural Correlates of Consciousness: Empirical and Conceptual Questions
MIT Press, 2000 - Medical - 350 pages
This book brings together an international group of neuroscientists and philosophers who are investigating how the content of subjective experience is correlated with events in the brain. The fundamental methodological problem in consciousness research is the subjectivity of the target phenomenon -- the fact that conscious experience, under standard conditions, is always tied to an individual, first-person perspective. The core empirical question is whether and how physical states of the human nervous system can be mapped onto the content of conscious experience. The search for the neural correlates of consciousness (NCC) has become a highly active field of investigation in recent years. Methods such as single-cell recording in monkeys and brain imaging and electrophysiology in humans, applied to such phenomena as blindsight, implicit/explicit cognition, and binocular rivalry, have generated a wealth of data. The same period has seen the development of a number of theories about NCC location. This volume brings together the leading experimentalists and theoreticians in the field. Topics include foundational and evolutionary issues, global integration, vision, consciousness and the NMDA receptor complex, neuroimaging, implicit processes, intentionality and phenomenal volition, schizophrenia, social cognition, and the phenomenal self.