New Directions in Consciousness Studies describes a range of fresh ideas which promise to significantly advance scientific understanding of human nature. Written in non-specialized language, the book draws upon concepts and research from history, philosophy, neuroscience and physics to delineate new approaches to the study of consciousness.
Early chapters deal with a range of ideas about our nature, and suggest that mind can usefully be viewed as a type of dynamic landscape. The account shows how our minds relate to their societies, brains and bodies and how they differ from computers. Later chapters develop a theory of the basis of consciousness (SoS theory). Using the physical concept of ‘broken symmetry’ the author shows how conscious mind may be rooted in temporality; a view that is supported by the occurrence of a wide range of anomalous phenomena. Potentially valuable future lines of research are identified.
This is a unique and engaging book that will appeal to students and academics in the field of consciousness studies and other readers with an interest in consciousness.
Table of Contents
1. Swings and Roundabouts 2. Picturing ‘Mind’ 3. Wetware 4. On Time 5. New Frontiers 6. Broken Symmetry 7. Qualia 8. Rocks from the Sky (part 1) 9. Rocks from the Sky (part 2) 10. Life at the Edge 11. New Directions 12. Speculations and Implications 13. Loose Ends and New Beginnings
Chris Nunn is a retired Consultant Psychiatrist, who used to work in association with the Medical School at Southampton University, UK. He has been Associate Editor of the Journal of Consciousness Studies for the past fifteen years.
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‘For scientifically inclined readers who are not satisfied with current mechanistic approaches to the mind, this is the most interesting book on the Hard Problem of Consciousness to appear in recent years. In search of foundations of conscious activity in nature, Chris Nunn discusses promising research programs in Physics, Neuroscience and Psychology, and synthesises several decades of research on consciousness studies. The ideas are intuitive, and presented from an astute and very well informed perspective. The book presents an encompassing conjecture that deserves attention of everyone in the field’. - Alfredo Pereira Jr., University of Sao Paulo, Brazil
'The strength of this book is found in frequent creative examples, distillation of the author's position presented in the index, and clear identfication of his arguments at the end of each chapter segueing into his next lines of evidence. Also helpful are short chapters that end with a line of questioning that begins the net chapter.' - Susan Gordon, National University, La Jolla, California, PsycCritiques