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The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness

Max Velmans (Editor), Susan Schneider (Editor)
ISBN: 978-1-4051-2019-7
768 pages
January 2007, Wiley-Blackwell
The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness (1405120193) cover image


With fifty-five peer reviewed chapters written by the leading authors in the field, The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness is the most extensive and comprehensive survey of the study of consciousness available today.

  • Provides a variety of philosophical and scientific perspectives that create a breadth of understanding of the topic
  • Topics include the origins and extent of consciousness, different consciousness experiences, such as meditation and drug-induced states, and the neuroscience of consciousness
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Table of Contents

List of Figures and Tables.

Notes on Contributors.

Introduction. (Susan Schneider and Max Velmans).

Part I: Problems of Consciousness.

1. A Brief History of the Scientific Approach to the Study of Consciousness. (Chris Frith and Geraint Rees).

2. Philosophical Problems of Consciousness. (Michael Tye).

Part II: The Domain of Consciousness.

Origins and Extent of Consciousness.

3. Consciousness in Infants. (Colwyn Trevarthen and Vasuvedi Reddy).

4. Animal Consciousness. (Colin Allen and Mark Bekoff).

5. Rethinking the Evolution of Consciousness. (Thomas Polger).

6. Machine Consciousness. (Igor Aleksander).

Some Varieties of Conscious Experience.

7. Normal and Abnormal States of Consciousness. (J. Allan Hobson).

8. Affective Consciouness. (Jaak Panksepp).

9. Clinical Oathologies and Unusual Experiences. (Richard P. Bentall).

10. Altered States of Consciousness: Drug Induced States. (Edward F. Pace-Schott and J. Allan Hobson).

11. Meditation. (David Fontana).

12. Mystical Experience. (David Fontana).

Breakdowns and the Unity of Consciousness.

13. The Case of Blindsight. (Lawrence Weiskrantz).

14. Split-Brain Cases. (Mary K. Colvin and Michael S. Gazzaniga).

15. Philosophical Psychopathology and Self-Consciousness. (G. Lynn Stephens and George Graham).

16. Coming Together: the Unity of Conscious Experience. (Barry Dainton).

Part III: Some Contemporary Theories of Consciousness.

17. The Hard Problem of Consciousness. (David Chalmers).

18. The Global Workspace Theory of Consciousness. (Bernard J. Baars).

19. The Intermediate Level Theory of Consciousness. (Jesse Prinz).

20. Representationalism about Consciousness. (William Seager and David Bourget).

21. Higher-Order Theories of Consciousness. (Peter Carruthers).

22. The Information Integration Theory of Consciousness. (Giulio Tononi).

23. Quantum Mechanical Theories of Consciousness. (Henry Stapp).

24. Daniel Dennett on the Nature of Consciousness. (Susan Schneider).

25. Biological Naturalism. (John Searle).

26. Mysterianism. (Mark Rowlands).

27. Dualism, Reductionism, and Reflexive Monism. (Max Velmans).

28. Naturalistic Dualism. (David Chalmers).

Part IV: Some Major Topics in the Philosophy of Consciousness.

29. Anti-materialist Arguments and Influential Replies. (Joe Levine).

30. Functionalism and Qualia. (Robert Van Gulick).

31. The Knowledge Argument. (Torin Alter).

32. The Causal Efficacy of Consciousness. (Jaegwon Kim).

33. The Neurophilosophy of Consciousness. (Pete Mandik).

34. Type Materialism for Phenomenal Consciousness. (Brian McLaughlin).

35. Sensory and Perceptual Consciousness. (Austen Clark).

36. Self-Consciousness. (José Luis Bermúdez).

37. Consciousness and Intentionality. (George Graham, Terry Horgan, and John Tienson).

Part V: Major Topics in the Science of Consciousness. Topics in the Cognitive.

Psychology of Consciousness.

38. Attention and Consciousness. (Nilli Lavie).

39. Inattentional Blindness, Change Blindness and Consciousness. (Alva Noë).

40. Preconscious Processing. (Phil Merikle).

41. Implicit and Explicit Memory and Learning. (John Kihlstrom, Jennifer Dorfman, and Lillian Park).

42. Consciousness of Action. (Marc Jeannerod).

Topics in the Neuroscience of Consciousness.

43. Methodologies for Identifying the Neural Correlates of Consciousness. (Geraint Rees and Chris Frith).

44. A Neurobiological Framework for Consciousness. (Francis Crick and Christof Koch).

45. A Theory of Micro-consciousness. (Semir Zeki).

46. Global Disorders of Consciousness. (Nicholas D. Schiff).

47. Large-Scale Temporal Coordination of Cortical Activity as a Prerequisite for Conscious Experience. (Wolf Singer).

48. Duplex Vision: Separate Cortical Pathways for Conscious Perception and the Control of Action. (Melvyn A. Goodale).

49. Consciousness and Anesthesia. (John F. Kihlstrom and Randall C. Cork).

50. Neural Dominance, Neural Deference, and Sensorimotor Dynamics. (Susan Hurley).

51. Benjamin Libet's Work on the Neuroscience of Free Will. (William P. Banks and Susan Pockett).

First-Person Contributions to the Science of Consciousness.

52. Cognition, Fringe Consciousness, and the Legacy of William James. (Bruce Mangan).

53. Phenomenological Approaches to Consciousness. (Shaun Gallagher).

54. Eastern Methods for Investigating Mind and Consciousness. (Jonathan Shear).

55. An Epistemology for the Study of Consciousness. (Max Velmans) Appendix: List of Useful Web Resources in Consciousness Studies.

Name Index.

Subject Index

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Author Information

Max Velmans has a Personal Chair in Psychology at the University of London and is currently Emeritus Professor at Goldsmiths College. He has around 80 publications on consciousness including Understanding Consciousness (2000), which was shortlisted for the British Psychological Society book of the year award in 2001 and 2002. Other publications include The Science of Consciousness: Psychological, Neuropsychological and Clinical Reviews (1996), Investigating Phenomenal Consciousness: New Methodologies and Maps (2000), and How Could Conscious Experiences Affect Brains? (2003). He was a co-founder and, from 2004 to 2006, Chair of the Consciousness and Experiential Psychology Section of the British Psychological Society.

Susan Schneider is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the University of Pennsylvania. She focuses on issues involving the philosophy of cognitive science and, in particular, the plausibility of computational theories of mind and theoretical issues in artificial intelligence. She also has authored numerous articles in metaphysics.

Editorial Board:
Science of Consciousness: Jeffrey Gray, John Kihlstrom, Phil Merikle, Stevan Harnad
Philosophy of Consciousness: Ned Block, David Chalmers, José Bermúdez, Brian McLaughlin, George Graham

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The Wiley Advantage

  • The most extensive and comprehensive survey of the study of consciousness available
  • 55 chapters written by leading experts introduce the latest cutting edge research on consciousness
  • Provides a variety of philosophical and scientific perspectives that create a breadth of understanding of the topic
  • Topics include the origins and extent of consciousness, different consciousness experiences, such as meditation and drug-induced states, and the neuroscience of consciousness
See More


“This outstanding collection of new essays, many by major figures, covers virtually every important topic in current research on consciousness, often in illuminating depth. Nobody interested in current thinking about consciousness will want to be without this volume.”
David M. Rosenthal, City University of New York, Graduate Center

“The list of contributors reads like a roll-call of the best modern studies of consciousness: they have contributed some of the best philosophy, psychology, and neuroscience of consciousness. The chapters of this companion show that consciousness has moved on from being a set of interesting problems towards being a topic of systematic, interdisciplinary scientific investigation.”
Patrick Haggard, University College London

“An absolutely indispensable resource for anyone interested in the study of consciousness. The major philosophical positions and controversies and all the latest scientific research are surveyed in 55 accessible, yet in-depth, essays.”
Robert Kane, University of Texas at Austin

"This is an outstanding book that anyone interested in consciousness really needs to read and absorb."
The Psychologist<!--end-->

"A valuable record of some of the best contempory thinking on consciousness."
The Journal of Consciousness Studies

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