Ralph D. Ellis, Ph.D.
Clark Atlanta University
Natika Newton, Ph.D.
New York Institute of Technology
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Adams, F. and Mele, A. 1989. "The role of intention in intentional action." Canadian Journal of Philosophy 19, 511-31.
Control-model analysis of goal-directed behavior in which the subject aims at producing proprioceptive sensations which signal that the goal a match with the perceived gesture has been achieved. The model postulates an information-processing state which includes a system which causes behavior, a representation of the goal-state, and mechanisms for comparing feedback with the representation. These mechanisms detect errors and determine whether or not the goal has been reached. Adams and Mele list the requirements for goal-directedness in a system S as follows (513):
- S has an internal state R capable of fixing G as S's goal-state and S is capable of detecting G's presence or absence;
- Information about S's ongoing behavior B is fed back into the system as information input and compared with R;
- S's modifications of output behavior B in response to comparison between S's present state and goal state causally depend upon the correction process of (ii).
Information that S is in a certain state, for example, will be recognized as indicating that G has been reached only if the conditions that constitute G are represented in R as G as what the behavior aims at and not just as a state of S. Likewise, information about states reached prior to G will avoid signalling an error only if these states are represented in R as means to G. In R, the content is what it is entirely by virtue of the work that it does for the S using it. In order for R to guide behavior, R must represent G in such a way that the representation will match the informational input if the goal is actually reached by S. That means, in cases where S a conscious agent, that G will be represented in terms of how it will feel to S to reach G. The resulting image, which binds together the means and the end into a single whole, is nonetheless rich enough to guide in performing the action, given the appropriate motivation.
Ahern, G.L. and G.E. Schwartz. 1985. "Differential lateralization for positive and negative emotion in the human brain: EEG spectral analysis". Neuropsychologia 23: 745-755.
Confirms Gainotti (1973) and Damasio and Van Hoesen (1983) in the correlation between brain wave patterns and feelings of elation and depression.
Ahn, Woo-Kyoung and Doublas Medin. 1992. "A two-stage model of category construction". Cognitive Science 16: 81-121.
In sorting tasks designed to test what kinds of categories people use, they "impose more structure than the examples support in the first stage and that the second stage adjusts for this difference between preferred and perceived structure (81)." Ahn and Medin in essence are observing the effects of neural inhibition on concept formation.
Alexander, G.E., Delong, M.R. and Critcher, M.D. 1992. "Do cortical and basal ganglionic motor areas use "motor programs" to control movement?" Behavioral and Brain Sciences 15, 656-665.
Supports the hypothesis that movement and higher-order thinking use similar neurophysiological substrates.
Anderson, John. 1983. The Architecture of Cognition. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
Attempt to develop a traditional digital-computer style computational model of mind in terms of `production systems.' The production systems have the advantage that they explain mental contents as occurrences which are produced on each occasion rather than stored in the brain.
Annis, David and Linda Annis. 1979. "Does philosophy improve critical thinking?" Teaching Philosophy 3: 2.
The most common strategy used to move students to a more sophisticated level of reasoning ability and also the most effective one is to get them to consciously reflect on the inference rules they rely on in their everyday deductive reasoning; to abstract the patterns they normally follow so as to formulate abstract rules such as modus tollens and transitivity; to make sure that invalid rules are not followed (by allowing students to see that these cannot be trusted to guarantee true conclusions from true premises); and then to consciously apply the rules to various kinds of examples in order to increase the students' skill at making reliably valid inferences. Annis and Annis document that a logic course structured in this way increased students' IQ scores by an average of 10 points (after compensating for the normal test-retest increase, which is about 2 points).
Anscombe, G.E.M. 1981. "The first person." In Metaphysics and Philosophy of Mind: Collected Philosophical Papers Volume II , 21-36. Oxford: Blackwell.
Objects to the claim that bodily information is the source of the sense of self; holds that we can imagine ourselves completely disembodied while retaining self-consciousness:
And now imagine that I get into a state of "sensory deprivation." Sight is cut off, and I am locally anaesthetized everywhere, perhaps floated in a tank of tepid water; I am unable to speak, or touch any part of my body with any other. Now I tell myself, "I won't let this happen again!" If the object meant by "I" is this body, this human being, then in these circumstances it won't be present to my senses; and how else can it be "present to" me? But have I lost what I mean by "I"? Is that not present to me? Am I reduced to, as it were, "referring in absence?" I have not lost my "self-consciousness;" nor can what I mean by "I" be an object no longer present to me. This both seems right in itself, and will be required by the "guaranteed reference" we are considering. (Anscombe 1981: 31)
Anscombe is arguing against the view, later defended by Evans (see 1982), that self-reference is dependent upon information from one's body.
Armstrong, D.M. 1981. Belief, Truth and Knowledge. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Distinguishes three states: minimal consciousness, in which there is some mental activity; perceptual consciousness, consisting of awareness of events in one's environment; and introspective consciousness, or "perception-like awareness of current states and activities in our own mind" (Armstrong 1981: 61). The latter two states are illustrated:
My proposal is that [introspective] consciousness . . . is nothing but perception or awareness of the state of our own mind. The driver in a state of automatism perceives, or is aware of, the road. If he did not, the car would be in a ditch. But he is not currently aware of his awareness of the road. He perceives the road, but he does not perceive his perceiving . . .He is not, as we normally are, conscious of what is going on in his mind. (1981: 61)
The driver in a state of automatism has only first order perception. Visual input arrives at the cortex but the attentional mechanism is not activated, or is activated only weakly. On coming-to, the driver has second-order perception; significant objects are strongly represented and he is aware of perceiving them.
Aristotle. 1993. De Anima. D.W. Hamlyn trans. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
Emphasizes that in living organisms the overall pattern of activity often determines the behavior of its substratum rather than the other way around, thus laying groudwork for the contemporary theory of `self-organizing systems.'
Aserinsky, Eugene, and Nathaniel Kleitman. 1953. "Regularly occurring periods of eye motility and concomitant phenomena during sleep". Science 118: 273.
Humans as well as cats show firing of motor neurons during dream images.
Asimov, Isaac. 1965. The Human Brain. New York: Mentor.
Good general discussion of the way hormonal activity regulates neurolophysiological processes. Points out that the cortex and hypothalamus function very similarly in most respects during sleep to the way they do during waking consciousness, except that the coordination or synchronization of the two parts of the brain is different (193ff). Given one global coordination, consciousness exists; given another global patterning of essentially the same elements and activities (or the absence of a coherent pattern but with the same elements and activities existing alongside each other), consciousness is absent (at least, waking consciousness is absent).
Aston-Jones, G. and F.E. Bloom. 1981. "Norepinephrine-containing locus coerulens neurons in behaving rats exhibit pronounced response to non-noxious environmental stimuli". Journal of Neuroscience 1: 887.
Study of the behavior of specific localized neurons as correlated with behavioral activities of rats.
Aurell, Carl G. 1983. "Perception: A model comprising two modes of consciousness. Addendum: Evidence based on event-related potentials and brain lesions". Perceptual and Motor Skills 56: 211-220.
Consciousness of an object does not occur at the point when only the primary and secondary projection areas of the relevant sensory modality are activated . (See also Aurell 1989.) Shows (in aggreement with Posner and Petersen 1990) that to consciously see an object requires not only that light impinge on the retina, and that a nerve impulse travel through the thalamus to stimulate the primary projection area of the occipital lobe None of this yet results in consciousness of the object, as we know from PET scans and other measures of electrical activity in localized brain areas; learning without awareness does occur, but extensive and sophisticated learning requires frontal and parietal activity, which accompany conscious attention. For similar findings, see Luria (1973), Posner and Rothbart (1992), Aurell (1989), and Posner (1980).
Aurell, Carl G. 1984. "Perception: A model comprising two modes of consciousness. Addendum II: Emotion incorporated". Perceptual and Motor Skills 59: 180-182.
If the kind of object being looked for does not present itself in the afferent activity of the occipital lobe, then the parietal lobe at first exhibits an electrical potential of N200, apparently corresponding to the negation of the original image being looked-for . Then the efferent system adjusts to the discrepancy and looks for something more closely resembling the object being presented. The end of this process (which occurs very quickly) is a P300 potential in the upper and posterior parietal lobe, corresponding to the consciousness of the object which is now perceived.
Aurell, Carl G. 1989. "Man's triune conscious mind". Perceptual and Motor Skills 68: 747-754.
The thalamus alerts the efferent anterior attentional mechanism to begin formulating questions or hypotheses about the more precise nature of the important stimulus, while simultaneously the thalamus also relays the sensory information to the primary sensory areas for further afferent processing . (See also Aurell 1984.)
Ausubel, David. 1963. The Psychology of Meaningful Verbal Learning. New York: Grune and Stratton.
Concurs with Bruner (1961) that a main difference between conscious and non-conscious processing is that in conscious processing the imaginative act precedes the perceptual one as part of the arousal and attentional mechanism.
Baars, Bernard. 1988. A Cognitive Theory of Consciousness. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Theory of cognitive architecture in which a `global workspace' is created by means of the organization of attention; items compete for attention based on the interests of the organism, and the central workspace is occupied by those which are considered most important. On Baars' account, specialized, cognitively isolated modules or processors have access to a common working memory, through which they can share information and cooperate in providing input for decision-making. The information broadcast in the global workspace is conscious, unlike that in the individual modules.
Baddeley, A. 1992 (a). "Working memory." Science 255, 556-559.
See 1992 (b).
Baddeley, A. 1992 (b). "Working memory: the interface between memory and cognition." Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience 4, 3, 281-288.
Emphasizes short-term or working memory systems that retain processed sensory input for extended on-line processing (see also Damasio 1994; Edelman 1987, 1992). The common view appears to be that phenomenal consciousness can be explained by sensory mechanisms in a way that involves a blending of memory images with novel sensory input.
Baddeley, A. 1986. Working Memory. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
Working memory, a form of STM, is a system for temporarily holding information involved in various tasks; it is post-categorical, as distinct from iconic memory, which is a pre-categorical form of STM.
Ballim, A., Wilks, Y. and Barnden, J. 1991. "Belief ascription, metaphor, and intensional identification." Cognitive Science 15, 133-171.
Like Fauconnier's studies, this study is concerned with nested belief clusters structured so as to facilitate propositional attitude reasoning; such belief clusters may be represented in propositional form. Argues that ascription, and cognition in general, are fundamentally dependent upon metaphor, such that "one's ascriptional activities use one's states of mind as metaphors for other people's states of mind."
Baron-Cohen, S. 1991. "Precursors to a theory of mind: Understanding attention in others." In Natural Theories of Mind, A Whiten (ed). Oxford: Blackwell.
Study of the role of joint-attention in the infant's development of a `theory theory' representation of others' attention, using normal and autistic children as subjects, and supporting the hypothesis that a capacity for joint-attention is a precursor for a theory of mind.
From observational studies, it appears that joint-attention behaviors occur far less frequently in autistic children than in non-autistic control groups. . . These behaviors include 'referential looking' (as occurs when I look at what you are looking at, and attempt to get you to look at something by using the direction of my eye gaze), and gestures such as giving, showing and pointing. In normal children, referential looking is present in the majority of eight-month-olds . . , and gestures such as giving, showing and pointing emerge between nine to 12 months old . . . Joint-attention deficits are likely to be the earliest social deficits in autism yet identified. (239; references omitted)
Baron-Cohen studies "proto-declarative pointing" pointing "in order to comment or remark on the world to another person" (240) as a paradigm example of joint-attention behavior. Proto-declarative pointing entails understanding attention in another person, and this in turn requires. "understanding that vision (or audition) can be directed selectively, and that its direction depends on the person finding the object or event of interest." (244) How does the infant represent interest ? Baron-Cohen believes that this ability may require metarepresentation. Unlike primary representations, which store literal information about the world, metarepresentations "refer to other representations" (234): thoughts, dreams, pretend objects, etc.
Barsalou, Lawrence. 1987. "The instability of graded structure: Implications for the nature of concepts". In Ulric Neisser (ed), Concepts and Conceptual Development: Ecological and Intellectual Factors in Categorization. New York: Cambridge University Press, 101-140.
Review and criticism of studies involving `typicality effects' in mental categorization, i.e., data concerning rapidity in making categorization judgments (subjects categorize more `typical' members of a category more readily than less typical ones); generall used to support prototype theory as against computational models.
Bartlett, Frederic C. 1932. Remembering: A Study in Experimental and Social Psychology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Traditional treatment of memory in which a theory of `memory traces' was attempted.
Bechtel, William. 1987. "Connectionism and the philosophy of mind: An overview". Southern Journal of Philosophy 26: 17-41.
Explains connectionism in this way: "The behavior of the system results more from the interaction of components than the behavior of the components themselves . . . [and] does not rely on internal representations as its processing units. It produces internal representations as responses to its inputs and it is possible to develop systems that adjust the weights of their connections in such a way as to develop their own system for categorizing inputs (19-21). . . When a pattern is not present in the system, it is not stored, as in traditional cognitive models. Such patterns are not retrieved from memory, but are reconstructed on appropriate occasions (Bechtel 1987: 22)."
Becker, Angela and Thomas Ward. 1991. "Children's use of shape in extending novel labels to animate objects: Identity versus postural change". Cognitive Development 6: 3-16.
Experiment in which it is found that preschoolers can ignore postural variation in identifying animate objects, while small but essential differences crucial to the classification of the animal are taken into account. "Preschoolers distinguish shape differences that are related to category membership from those that indicate temporary postural changes (3)." This shows that children identify types of objects despite postural variation by imagining that the object could be `bent' here and there without changing its identity. In identifying objects, then, we imagine what could and could not be done if we were to perform some manipulation of the object. This would imply that the human brain is organized in such a way that we look first for the more general features of objects and then, as we receive more and more feedback, we focus on more and more specific features.
Berlin, Brent and Paul Kay. 1969. Basic Color Terms: Their Univerality and Evolution. Berkeley: University of California Press.
Demonstrates that memory for colors is largely a function of color naming.
Bickle, John. 1992. "Multiple realizability and psychophysical reduction". Behavior and Philosophy 20: 47-58.
Develops solution to the problem of multiple realizability of mental states: Consider the reduction of thermodynamics to statistical mechanics, for example. "When you think in terms of the velocity and momentum of each individual molecule, you will see that there are an indefinite number of ways for a given aggregate of molecules to realize any given temperature. . . . Here, again with a vengeance, is multiple realizability of `the same individual across times' an indefinite number of distinct possible micro-realizations of a given macroscopic phenomenon in the same molecular aggregate (Bickle 1992: 53)." Yet, Bickle argues, no one would raise this as an objection against explaining thermodynamics in terms of statistical mechanics, or of saying that a given temperature is inseparable from certain conditions which could be stipulated with regard to the underlying mechanics that a certain mathematical relationship must obtain between the velocity and momentum and the density of particles within a given volume. Even if a given temperature is realizable by an indefinite number of mechanical patterns, we can still say that that temperature is both necessary and sufficient for one of a disjunctive set of alternative patterns.
Berndt, R. and Caramazza, A. 1980. "A redefinition of the syndrome of Broca's aphasia: Implications for a neuropsychological model of language." Applied Psycholonguistics 1:225-78
Patients with Broca's aphasia have difficulties in organizing sentences according to grammatical rules, and also in comprehension of sentences with complex relational structures as well as of isolated relational terms.
Berti, A. and Rizzolatti, G. 1992. "Visual processing without awareness: Evidence from unilateral neglect." Journal of Cognitive NeuroScience 4, 4, 345-351.
Neurophysiological account of the `blindsight' phenomenon.
Bickerton, Derek, 1995. Language and Human Behavior. Seattle: University
of Washington Press.
Primarily about the evolution of language
abilities, and thus touching on consciousness and brain organization. "Try
to imagine a tiger practicing its killing technique in the absence of any
prey, or a gazelle practicing its latest escape maneuver in the absence of
any predator. . . . Doing a special, individualized thing simply to be able
to do it better on some future occasion is uniquely human behavior."
Bickle, John. 1993. "Philosophy neuralized: A critical notice of P.M. Churchland's Neurocomputational Perspective". Behavior and Philosophy 20: 75-88.
Discussion of the way connectionism needs to be developed in relation to its neurophysiological realizability in order to be a viable aproach.
Bisiach, E. 1988. "Language without thought." InThought Without Language, L. Weiskrantz (ed.), 464-484. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Based on studies of left-sided spatial neglect, argues against an autonomous representational role for language. He suggests that there exists "a passive, sporadic entailment of linguistic structures by fundamentally non-verbal thought processes, a sort of epiphenomenal resonance of the latter in the instrument they have at their disposal for overt communication . . . Linguistic icons have been laid down alongside the nonlinguistic icons of objects, situations and events to which they are related. As such, linguistic icons might act as keystones supporting the assemblage of independent representations, and specifying the nature of their relations, in a compound act of thought. . . By 'linguistic icons,' I literally mean sensorimotor representations of natural language items." (479)
On this view, images of words or phrases might be components of mental models; but reasoning with them would entail nonverbal structures.
Bisiach, Edoardo. 1992. "Understanding consciousness: Clues from unilateral neglect and related disorders". In A.D. Milner and M.D. Rugg (eds). The Neuropsychology of Consciousness. London: Academic Press, 113-138.
Argues against Posner and Rothbart (1992) as to whether the substrate of consciousness is completely globally distributed throughout the brain (Bisiach), or is narrowly a function of the anterior-cingulate-frontal-limbic area (Posner and Rothbart).
Blakemore, Colin and G.F. Cooper. 1970. "Development of the brain depends on the visual environment". Nature 228: 477.
Shows that brain development continues well after infancy, and that both before and after birth brain development is determined by the functional demands on the brain, rather than purely by preprogrammed genetic factors.
Block, Ned. 1997. "Anti-Reductionism Slaps Back." Philosophical Perspectives
11. Mind, Causation, and World: 107-131.
For nearly 30 years, there has been a consensus (at least in
English-speaking countries) that reductionism is a mistake and that there
are autonomous special sciences. This consensus has been based on an
argument from multiple realizability. But Jeagwon Kim has argued
persuasively that the multiple realizability argument is flawed. This paper
sketches the recent history of the debate, arguing that much -- but not all
-- of the anti-reductionist consensus survives Kim's critique.
Block, Ned. 1996. "How Can We Find the Neural Correlate of Consciousness?"
Trends in Neuroscience, Oct.: 456-59 (reprinted in proceedings of the 1996
Tucson "Toward a Science of Consciousness" conference; German translation:
"Das neurale Korrelat des Bewusstseins" in Bewusstsein und Repraesentation,
ed. Frank Esken and Heinz-Dieter Heckmann (Paderborn: Verdinand Schoeningh,
Argues that there are two concepts of consciousness, access consciousness
and phenomenal consciousness. But just as the concepts of water and H2O are
different concepts of the same thing, so the two concepts of consciousness
might come to the same thing in the brain. Some recent papers by Crick and
Koch raise issues that suggest that these two concepts of consciousness
might have different (though overlapping) neural correlates, despite Crick
and Koch's implicit rejection of this idea.
Block, Ned. 1995. "On a Confusion about a Function of Consciousness".
Behavioral and Brain Sciences 18: 227-287.
Argues that consciousness is a mongrel concept: there are a number of very
different "consciousnesses." Phenomenal consciousness is experience; the
phenomenally conscious aspect of a state is waht it is like to be in that
state. The mark of access-consciousness, by contrast, is availability for
use in reasoning and rationally guiding speech and action. These concepts
are often partly or totally conflated, with bad results. This article uses
as an example a form of reasoning about a function of "consciousness" based
on the phenomenon of blindsight. Some information about stimuli in the blind
field is represented in the brains of blindsight patients, as shown by their
correct "guesses." They cannot harness this information in the service of
actionk however, and this is said to show that a function of phenomenal
consciousness is somehow to enable information represented in the brain to
guide action. But stimuli in the blind field are both access-unconscious and
phenomenally unconscious. The fallacy is: an obvious function of the
machinery of access-consciousness is illicitly transferred to phenomenal
Includes commentaries by D.M. Armstrong, Anthony Atkinson adn Martin
Davies, Bernard Baars, Talis Bachmann, Jennifer Church, Daniel Dennett, N.F.
Dison,Martha Farah, George Graham, Gilbert Harman, Nicholas Humphrey,
Leonard Katz, Patricia Kitcher, Bernard Kobes, Joseph Levine, Dan Lloyd,
William Lycan, Adam Morton, Thomas Natsoulas, David Navon, Antti Revonsuo,
G. Rey, Roger Shepard, Michael Tye, J. van Brakel, Richard Warren, Andrew W.
Young, and Tiziana Zalla and Adriano Palma, with response by Block.
See also further commentaries by Joseph Bogen, Selmer Bringsjord,
Derek Browne, David Chalmers, Denise Gamble, Daniel Gilman, Guven Guzeldere
and Murat Aydede, Bruce Mangan,Alva Noe, Ernst Poppel, David Rosenthal, and
A.H.C. vander Heijden, P.T.W. Hudson and A.G. Kurvink, with further response
by Block, in Behavioral and Brain Sciences 20 (1997): 144-66.
Block, N. 1980. "What is functionalism?" In Readings in Philosophy of Psychology v. 1. Block, N. (ed), 171-184. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
One main strand of the linguistic view of intentionality is computationalism, or computation-representation functionalism as supported here by Block: The world is represented in a "language of thought," which functions like a computer language. Thinking is performing computations on the symbol strings of this language, which are purely formal but interpretable as referring to entities and states of the external world and which are translatable into natural language. The mechanisms performing these computations do not "know" what the symbols represent; they "understand" only syntax.
Boden, M. 1990. "Escaping from the chinese room." In The Philosophy of Artificial Intelligence, Boden, M. (ed), 89-104. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Points out that while Searle, in the Chinese room thought experiment, lacks an understanding of Chinese, he does understand how to manipulate the symbols. This type of understanding might even be attributable to a nonhuman computer, whose "procedures do embody some minimal understanding . . . of what it is to compare two formal structures, for example" (99). We may assume that Searle is satisfied with his understanding of how to perform the required operations on the symbols; he expresses no puzzlement about these actions or about the meaning of the English symbols that instruct him to perform them. Thus the Chinese Room scenario itself provides an example of the kind of understanding that Searle is missing in the case of the Chinese symbols -- the understanding of a basic action.
Boden, M. 1982. "Implications of language studies for human nature." In Language, Mind and Brain, Simon, T.W. and Scholes, R.J. (eds), 129-143. Hillsdale, N.J.: Lawrence Erlbaum.
Abstract relations are isomorphic with physical relations and are naturally expressed in physical terms.
Boden, Margaret. 1982. "Implications of language studies for human nature". In T.W. Simon and R.J. Scholes (eds), Language, Mind and Brain. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum, 129-143.
Imagistic interpretation of the way language functions, with neuropysiological substrates of the proposed mechanisms discussed.
Bonatti, Luca. 1994. "Why should we abandon the mental logic hypothesis?" Cognition 50: 17-39.
Emphasizes that we usually execute formal inference rules without taking the time to call up images or to consciously explicate the meanings of terms.
Broadbent, Donald E. 1958. Perception and Communication. London: Pergamon Press.
Develops the early selection theory of selective attention, arguing that only onformation attended to can be fully processed, thus selection for attention must occur early in the processing cycle.
Bonjour, L. 1985. The Structure of Empirical Knowledge. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
Brand, M. 1986. "Intentional actions and plans." In Midwest Studies in Philosophy, French, P., Uehling, T. Jr., and Wettstein, H. (eds), 213-230. Minneapolis: University of Minesota Press.
Argues that "intentional action is action performed in following a plan" (213; see also Goldman, 1970, and Harman, 1986: 84.). According to Brand, a plan is an abstract series of action-types. Plans can exist independently of persons, and they can also exist as mental representations, in which case a person has that plan, which can then be followed or not. Following a plan is more than just acting according to or in conformity with it: "A subject follows a plan, I submit, just in case he has this plan, acts in accordance with it, and is moved to achieve the goal of the plan. Active attention or reflection is not necessary for plan following. We need only represent the plan to ourselves when following it; a plan is, as it were, a cognitive map through the maze of possible future action." (223) Brand's account of intentional action thus differs from that of Harman (see 1986). Brand's account is compatible with recent work pointing to the existence of action schemata or programs in the motor cortex. According to this work, what is voluntary in an action is the selection of a goal; this event, unless followed by an inhibition, initiates a series of automatic actions or motor reflexes. These reflexes are not the same as ones operating at the level of the spinal chord, like the knee jerk in response to a blow to the patellar tendon mentioned by Brand (213): over such reflexes there is no possibility of gaining control. The higher-level reflexes drive actions like that in another example Brand uses: taking the soap from the tray in the shower, an action which advances his goal of going to the university and which could be articulated as part of his plan to do that, but which is included in a subroutine which need not be made explicit.
Bransford, J. and McCarrell, N. 1977. "A cognitive approach to comprehension." In Thinking, Johnson-Laird, P.N. and Wason, P.C., (eds), 377-399. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Bransford and McCarrell address the issue of what happens when we comprehend, or "what we know when an entity is meaningful for us." They argue that "objects become meaningful as a function of perceived interrelations with other objects (including ourselves)" (1975: 383).We do not understand objects considered in isolation from any context; rather, understanding them is knowing how they are (or could be) related to other things that we know. If we can relate them to these other things, then they take on a meaning for us.
Brentano, F. 1960. "The distinction between mental and physical phenomena." In Realism and the Background of Phenomenology, Chisholm, R.M. (ed). Glencoe, IL: Free Press.
Aspects of the traditional concept of intentionality are important for the present theory. The one most commonly acknowledged stems from Brentano' s characterization of mental states such as desires or beliefs. A desire is a desire for an object; a belief is a belief about some state of affairs. But while mental states are related in this way to objects, the relations are different from any physical relations. They are distinguished, said Brentano, "by what the scholastics of the Middle Ages referred to as the intentional (alsothe mental) inexistence of the object, and what we, although with not quite unambiguous expressions, would call relation to a content, direction upon an object (which is not here to be understood as a reality), or immanent objectivity." (168-9) Points out that the intentionality of a mental state is a peculiar sort of relation to a content: neither a sentence asserting the relation e.g. "Diogenes looked for an honest man" nor its contradictory implies that the object exists. Statements asserting nonintentional physical relations, on the other hand e.g. "Diogenes sat in his tub" do imply the existence of both relata.
Broadbent, Donald E. 1977. "The hidden pre-attentive process". American Psychologist 32: 109-118.
Presents further evidence and argument to support the `early selection' theory of attention (see Broadbent 1958).
Brown, Charles. 1965. "Fallacies in Taylor's `Fatalism'". The Journal of Philosophy 62: 349-353.
Objections against Taylor's (1962) theory of the directionality of causation.
Brown, R. 1958. Words and Things . New York: Free Press.
The feeling of satisfaction often called the "Aha!" feeling is not to be taken as itself the content of understanding. This feeling (called the "click of comprehension" by Brown (1958)) is a qualitative state which frequently accompanies the sudden achievement of understanding, and which can serve as a sign to us that we have understood a thing.
Bruner, Jerome S. 1961. Contemporary Approaches to Cognition. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
Argues that a main difference between conscious and non-conscious processing is that in conscious processing the imaginative act precedes the perceptual one as part of the arousal and attentional mechanism In
Buchwald, Jennifer, Donald Guthrie, Judith Schwafel, R. Erwin and Diana Van Laniker. 1994. "Influence of language structure on brain-behavior development". Brain and Language 46: 607-619.
In agreement with Lenneberg (1967), shows that the specific sounds we are able to discriminate as adults are determined by the opportunity to refine our auditory categories at the appropriate developmental stage. (This is why children who grow up speaking only Japanese, for example, have trouble hearing the difference between the sounds `l' and `r'.) each animal is born with a small collection of images to which it is pre-programmed to respond in certain ways. By modifying these responses through cortical inhibition, we refine and elaborate the categories (See also Elman 1993; Blakemore and Cooper 1970; Hirsch and Spinelli 1970; Mitchell et al 1973;
Buck, Ross. 1988. Human Motivation and Emotion. New York: Wiley.
The frontal lobe shows elaborate neuronal connections to the limbic region and to all parts of the cerebrum. See also Petersen 1989.
Bullemer, P. and Nissen, M.J. 1990. "Attentional orienting in the expression of procedural knowledge". Paper presented at meeting of the Psychonomic Society, New Orleans, April 1990.
Empirical study in which subjects non-consciously learn to execute tasks requiring attention, in the sense that an item must be distinguished from surrounding items and thus becomes an intense focus point for sensory and cognitive processing, while the surrounding items are not focused on in this way . All of this occurs without any conscious awareness of the item on which `attention' has been focused in this way. (See also Bullemer and Nissen 1987; Cohen et al 1990.)
Burgess, Curt and Simpson, Greg. 1988. "Cerebral hemispheric mechanisms in the retrieval of ambiguous word meanings". Brain and Language 33: 86-103.
Empirical study of the roles played by the two hemispheres in memory retrieval in linguistic contexts.
Butler, Keith. 1993. "Connectionism, classical cognitivism and the relation between cognitive and implementational levels of analysis". Philosophical Psychology 6: 321-330.
Like Tienson (1987), criticizes connectionist models (see Bechtel 1987) as neurophysiologically unrealizable.
Calvin, William H., 1996. The
Cerebral Code: Thinking a Thought in the Mosaics of the Mind.
Cambridge: MIT Press. Chapter titles are: The Representation Problem and
the Copying Solution, Cloning in Cerebral Cortex, A Compressed Code
Emerges, Managing the Cerebral Commons, Resonating with your Chaotic
Memories, Partitioning the Playfield, Intermission Notes, The Brownian
Notion, Convergence Zones with a Hint of Sex, Chimes on the Quarter Hour,
The Making of Metaphor, Thinking a Thought in the Mosaics of the Mind.
Calvin, William H., 1996.
How Brains Think. NewYork: Basic Books (Science Masters series, many translations). It expands
on the author's October 1994 Scientific American article to
address the evolution of consciousness, intelligence, and language. The
chapter titles are: What to Do Next, Evolving a Good Guess, The Janitor's
Dream, Evolving Intelligent Animals, Syntax as a Foundation of Intelligence,
Evolution On-The-Fly, Shaping Up an Intelligent Act from Humble Origins, and
Prospects for a Superhuman Intelligence. It is suitable for biology and
cognitive neuroscience supplementary reading lists.
Calvin, William H., and George A. Ojemann, 1994. Conversations with Neil's
Brain: The Neural Nature of Thought and Language. Reading MA:
It's a tour of the human cerebral cortex, conducted from
the operating room, with many discussions of brain mechanisms for cognition
and consciousness. Chapter titles are: A Window to the Brain, Losing
Consciousness, Seeing the Brain Speak, If Language Is Left, What's Right?, The Problems
with Paying Attention, The Personality of the Lowly Neuron, The What and
Where of Memory, How Are Memories Made? What's Up Front? When Things Go
Wrong with Thought and Mood, Tuning Up the Brain by Pruning, Acquiring and
Reacquiring Language, Taking Apart the Visual Image, How the Brain
Subdivides Language, Why Can We Read So Well? Stringing Things Together in
Novel Ways, Deep in the Temporal Lobe, Just Across from the Brain Stem, In
Search of the Narrator. It is suitable for biology and cognitive
neuroscience supplementary reading lists.
Caplain G. 1995 "Is Consciousness a Computational Property?"
Informatica 19 (1995) 615-619.
Outline of a proof that consciousness cannot be adequately
described as a computational structure and/or process. This
derivation makes use of a well-known, but paradoxical, ability
of consciousness to reach ascertained knowledge (as opposed to
mere belief) in some cases. Although such a result rules out
"naive reductionism", it does not fully settle the reductionism
vs. dualism debate in favor of the latter, but merely leads to
some kind of weak dualism.
Canseco-Gonzalez, E., Shapiro, L., Zurif, E. and Baker, E. 1990. "Predicate-argument structure as a link between linguistic and nonlinguistic representations." Brain and Language 39, 391-404.
Trained a patient with severe aphasia to learn abstract symbols representing verbs of two types: pure transitive verbs taking only one argument structure, such as "fix" and "locate;" and dative verbs taking two different argument structures, such as "sell" and "send." Their hypothesis was that linguistic argument structure, which expresses action features such as agent and goal, is rooted in nonlinguistic visual experience, and they reasoned that symbols representing pictures of people performing actions would be easier to learn when the actions were commonly translated by pure transitive verbs, and harder to learn when common translations were the more complex dative verbs
Carruthers, P. 1989. "Brute experience." The Journal of Philosophy, LXXXVI, 5, 258-269.
Cassirer, Ernst. 1923-1953. Substance and Function. New York: Dover.
At the level of what explains what, there is an important sense in which, as Cassirer puts it, function is often prior to the particular substance which serves as its substratum. Conscious cognitive events, by contrast, are higher-order relationships of patterns of such changes in terms of the temporal configuration of these changes. `Two singers singing in rhythm with each other' cannot be adequately described by first describing the one singer's melody, and then describing the other's melody. Nor can their synchronization be explained merely by means of what would suffice to explain why each singer sings. The pattern of the mental event would have been the same or very similar even if those particles of brain matter had never been there, provided that some other usable lumps of matter had been available;
Chalmers, D. 1995. "Facing up to the problem of consciousness." Journal of Consciousness Studies 2, 200-219.
Argues that "We know that a theory of consciousness requires the addition of something fundamental to our ontology, as everything in physical theory is compatible with the absence of consciousness" (214).
Changeux, J. 1985. Neuronal Man . New York: Pantheon Books.
Cheney, D.L., and Seyfarth, R.M. 1990. How Monkeys See the World. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Animals use systems of communication that are much more like sophisticated languages than is often supposed (see also Griffin 1992).
Cheney and Seyfarth describe in detail the apparent ability of vervet monkeys to predict the behavior of their conspecifics, an ability upon which their survival depends.
Chomsky N. 1980. "Rules and representations." Behavioral and Brain Sciences 3, 1-61.
Argues for the Modularity Hypothesis which holds that different cognitive tasks are accomplished by brain "modules," each determined by set of task-specific rules and cognitively isolated from other modules. Chomsky's theory of language competence is an example of such a theory,
Churchland, P. 1984. Matter and Consciousness. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press.
Argues for an eliminativist theory of cognition considering the difficulty as to how humans know about others' mental states. The "beliefs" and "desires" to which we advert in our predictions are not, it is held, the actual causes of human behavior, but rather elements in a common-sense theory of psychology which will ultimately be replaced by a more accurate scientific picture. The need for eliminativism arises from the problem that, although commonsense psychology is scientifically inaccurate, it seems to work in predicting human behavior. The second problem is that even if commonsense psychology is not inaccurate, the knowledge structures required to apply it appear unable to be modeled in formal systems such as AI programs. For such modeling a theory of psychology must be expressible by a set of formally describable causal regularities, such as "If x desires p and believes q, then x will do r." It is well known, however, that commonsense psychology is not formalizable in this way: there are too many exceptions to the rules.
Churchland, Patricia S. 1986. Neurophilosophy. Cambridge: The MIT Press.
Extensive theoretical discussion of the neurobiological basis of mental functioning from a functionalist perspective.
Churchland, Paul M. 1985. "Reduction, qualia, and the direct introspection of brain states." Journal of Philosophy 82, 2, 2-28.
Churchland, Paul M. 1979. Scientific Realism and the Plasticity of Mind. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Classic functionalist model in which the attempt is made to distinguish between `hardward' and `software' in mental functioning.
Churchland, Paul M. 1989. A Neurocomputational Perspective: The Nature of Mind and the Structure of Science. Cambridge: MIT Press.
Classic formulation of connectionist model of information processing.
Cohen, Asher, Richard Ivry, and Steven Keele. 1990. "Attention and structure in sequence learning". Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory and Cognition 16: 17-30.
As in the Bullemer and Nissen studies (1987, 1990), subjects non-consciously learn to execute tasks requiring attention in that the item must be distinguished and separated out from its surroundings. As in blindsight studies, this attention occurs without consciousness of the attended item.
Cohen, R.M., W.E. Semple, M. Gross, H.J. Holcomb, S.M. Dowling, and T.E. Nordahl. 1988. "Functional localization of sustained attention". Neuropsychiatry, Neuropsychology and Behavioral Neurology 1: 3-20.
Study of the attention process as dissociable from phenomenal consciousness of the attended object. See also Cohen, Ivry and Keele (1990).
Cooper, N. 1994. "Understanding." Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society, 1-26.
Corballis, Michael. 1991. The Lopsided Ape: Evolution of the Benerative Mind. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Proposes that a feature of human cognition common to many different domains is generativity: "the ability to construct an unlimited number of different forms from a finite number of elementary parts" (65). Generativity could be one of the important features that ties the various highly evolved cognitive modules to their primitive origins in motor systems .
Corbetta, M., F.M. Meizen, S. Dobmeyer, G.L. Schulman, and S.E. Petersen. 1990. "Selective attention modulates neural processing of shape, color and velocity in humans". Science 248: 1556-1559.
Empirical study of the differences in perceptual processing between situations in which an object is presented as a novel stimulus and when the object is already being `tracked' by the subject.
Cormac, Earl Mac, and Maxim Stamenov (eds). 1996. Fractals of Brain, Fractals of Mind. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Papers in this volume discuss possibilites for modelling different aspects of brain and mind functioning with the formal means of fractal geometry and deterministic chaos. The contributions discuss edge-of-chaos dynamics in recursively organized neural systems and in intersensory interaction; the fractal timing of the neural functioning on different scales of brain networking; aspects of fractal neurodynamics and quantum chose in novel biophysics; the fractal maximum-power evolution of brain and mind; the chaotic dynamics in the development of consciousness.
Cornaldi, Cesare and Mark McDaniel (eds). 1991. Imagery and Cognition. New York: Springer-Verlag.
Good collection of studies on the neurophysiological basis of mental imagery.
Coulter, Jeff. 1983. Rethinking Cognitive Theory. London: Macmillan.
There are many more memories stored in the brain than there are neurons or even neuronal connections.
Crick. F. 1984. "Function of the thalamic reticular complex: The searchlight hypothesis." PNAS 81, 4586-4590.
Visual attention is thought to be accomplished in the brain by means of cortico-thalamic connections, which subject certain visual features to enhanced processing activity (see also Crick and Koch 1990). This heightened activity increases the salience of particular aspects of the visual field, and the accompanying experience of attending to those aspects is a familiar one.
Crick, Francis and Christof Koch. 1990. "Towards a neurobiological theory of consciousness." Seminars in the Neurosciences 2, 263-275.
Proposes a mechanism for unifying the different features of visual objects. They suggest that neurons responding to the separate features of an object are bound into temporary cell assemblies by semi-synchronous oscillations (in the 40-70 Hz range). The binding is brought about by means of attentional mechanisms such as the cortico-thalamic feedback loops described above. A hypothetical model of the process is as follows. External input is transmitted from the retina via the thalamus to the cortex, where distinct features of objects are processed in separate areas. When features processed in these areas are conspicuous, feedback to the LGN enhances the output of corresponding locations there.
Cussins, A. 1993. "Nonconceptual content and the elimination of misconceived composites!" Mind and Language 8, 2, 234-252.
Further discussion of the theory of embodiment and objectiviety through `cognitive trails' developed in Cussins (1992).
Cussins, A. 1992. "Content, embodiment and objectivity: The theory of cognitive trails." Mind 101, 404, 651-688.
Introduces the notion of nonconceptual content in terms of Evans' account of embodied content:
The Evansian begins like this: the subject sees the mug as graspable, as locatable, as being such as to resist manual-pressure, as being drinkable-from, as being push-and-then-fallable . . . These descriptions that the theorist uses are not likely to be elegant or simple, for they are not available to the subject as descriptive conditions of the world. They are, rather, available to the subject in the kind of way in which I know, on the basis of my kinesthetic experience, how to raise my left hand to a point several inches above my right ear. I know very well how to do this. Moreover, I know that I know how to do it (I can, for example, make myself aware in imagination of each of the stages of the action-sequence). (Cussins 1992: 658)
Cussins contrasts nonconceptual content, which on the present theory corresponds to what is understood in a basic action, with objective content:
A start on the objectivity of content is this: that the content's referent is given as public, as something which is, in principle at least, equally available to any subjective point of view. A sign of this objectivity is that the content can be incorrect: if the referent is given as a public object, then it is always possible that the subject is wrong about the object, even where the referent is the subject oneself. What we are after is a metaphysical distinction between subject and object, a distance which makes intelligible the subject's being wrong (and therefore also being right) about the object; which provides for the possibility of truth. (Cussins 1992: 660; italics added)
In order to explain the emergence of objective content, which allows the possibility of being wrong, from nonconceptual content, Cussins develops a theory about how a subject establishes 'cognitive trails,' or 'way-finding abilities' through 'feature domains' (Cussins 1992: 673f).
Cussins, A. 1990. "The connectionist construction of concepts." In The Philosophy of Artificial Intelligence, Boden , M. (ed), 368-440. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
The mental states in which objects are represented are states with conceptual content; that of those representing actions is nonconceptual. 'Conceptual content presents the world to a subject as divided up into objects, properties, and situations: the components of truth conditions' (1990: 382). Notes the special difficulty of the problem of indexicals: for any description it would be possible for me to understand it and yet not know that I am the one described. Thus it appears that a crucial aspect of any nonartificial domain of discourse fails to be captured in a formal conceptual system.
Cutler, Anne. 1994. "The perception of rhythm in language". Cognition 50: 79-81.
Shows evidence that the perception of rhythm in language is a basic pattern recognition phenomenon which functions similarly to the recognition of spatial patterns.)
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