From Cognitive Science to A Science of Consciousness

In this essay I intend to demonstrate how cognitive science, which stands at the crossroads of the natural sciences and the human sciences, has adopted an “objectivist” perspective on cognition that unnecessarily limits our understanding of the human mind; and I shall conclude with a prolegomenon to understanding the nature of consciousness and its causal efficacy.

In this essay I intend to demonstrate how cognitive science, which stands at the crossroads of the natural sciences and the human sciences, has adopted an “objectivist” perspective on cognition that unnecessarily limits our understanding of the human mind; and I shall conclude with a prolegomenon to understanding the nature of consciousness and its causal efficacy. The essay consists of four parts: (1) comments on the historical origins of the objectivist perspective, (2) an analysis of cognitivism, (3) an analysis of connectionism, based largely on the book The Embodied Mind: Cognitive science and human experience by neuroscientist Francisco Varela, philosopher Evan Thompson, and cognitive psychologist Eleanor Rosch (MIT Press, 1991), and (4) suggestions for freshly examining the nature and causal efficacy of consciousness.

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