Self Comes to Mind Constructing the Conscious Brain

ISBN-10: 0307378756

ISBN-13: 9780307378750

Edition: 2010

Authors: Antonio Damasio

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One of the most important and original neuroscientists at work today tackles a question that has confounded neurologists, philosophers, cognitive scientists, and psychologists for centuries: how consciousness is created. Antonio Damasio has spent the past thirty years studying and writing about how the brain operates, and his work has garnered acclaim for its singular melding of the scientific and the humanistic. In this revelatory work, he debunks the long-standing idea that consciousness is somehow separate from the body, presenting astounding new scientific evidence that consciousness-what we think of as "self"-is in fact a biological process created by the brain. Besides the three traditional perspectives used to study the mind (the personal, the behavioral, and the neurological), Damasio introduces the evolutionary perspective, which entails a radical change in the way the history of conscious minds is viewed and told. Self Comes to Mindis a groundbreaking investigation of consciousness as a dynamic, unpredictable faculty that is instrumental in defining and explaining who we understand ourselves to be.
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Book details

List price: $33.00
Copyright year: 2010
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 11/9/2010
Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 384
Size: 7.00" wide x 10.25" long x 1.50" tall
Weight: 1.738
Language: English

Antonio Damasio was born in Lisbon, Portugal and studied medicine at the University of Lisbon Medical School, where he also did his neurological residency and completed his doctorate. Eventually, he moved to the United States as a research fellow at the Aphasia Research Center in Boston. From 1976 to 2005, he was M.W. Van Allen Professor and Head of Neurology at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. He is currently the David Dornsife Professor of Neuroscience, Psychology, and Neurology, and director of the Brain and Creativity Institute at the University of Southern California. He has written several books on his research including Descartes' Error: Emotion, Reason, and the Human Brain, which won the Science et Vie prize; The Feeling of What Happens: Body and Emotion in the Making of Consciousness; and Looking for Spinoza: Joy, Sorrow, and the Feeling Brain. He has also received the Prince of Asturias Award in Science and Technology, the Kappers Neuroscience Medal, the Beaumont Medal from the American Medical Association, the Nonino Prize, the Reenpaa Prize in Neuroscience, and the Honda Prize.

Starting Over
Goals and Reasons
Approaching the Problem
The Self as Witness
Overcoming a Misleading Intuition
An Integrated Perspective
The Framework
A Preview of Main Ideas
Life and the Conscious Mind
From Life Regulation to Biological Value
The Implausibility of Reality
Natural Will
Staying Alive
The Origins of Homeostasis
Cells, Multicellular Organisms, and Engineered Machines
Biological Value
Biological Value in Whole Organisms
The Success of Our Early Forerunners
Developing Incentives
Connecting Homeostasis, Value, and Consciousness
What's In A Brain That A Mind Can Be?
Making Maps and Making Images
Maps and Images
Cutting Below the Surface
Maps and Minds
The Neurology of Mind
The Beginnings of Mind
Closer to the Making of Mind?
The Body in Mind
The Topic of the Mind
Body Mapping
From Body to Brain
Representing Quantities and Constructing Qualities
Primordial Feelings
Mapping Body States and Simulating Body States
The Source of an Idea
The Body-Minded Brain
Emotions and Feelings
Situating Emotion and Feeling
Defining Emotion and Feeling
Triggering and Executing Emotions
The Strange Case of William James
Feelings of Emotion
How Do We Feel an Emotion?
The Timing of Emotions and Feelings
The Varieties of Emotion
Up and Down the Emotional Range
An Aside on Admiration and Compassion
An Architecture for Memory
Somehow, Somewhere
The Nature of Memory Records
Dispositions Came First, Maps Followed
Memory at Work
A Brief Aside on Kinds of Memory
A Possible Solution to the Problem
More on Convergence-Divergence Zones
The Model at Work - The How and Where of Perception and Recall
Being Conscious
Consciousness Observed
Defining Consciousness
Breaking Consciousness Apart
Removing the Self and Keeping a Mind
Completing a Working Definition
Kinds of Consciousness
Human and Nonhuman Consciousness
What Consciousness Is Not
The Freudian Unconscious
Building a Conscious Mind
A Working Hypothesis
Approaching the Conscious Brain
Previewing the Conscious Mind
The Ingredients of a Conscious Mind
The Protoself
Constructing the Core Self
The Core Self State
Touring the Brain as It Constructs a Conscious Mind
The Autobiographical Self
Memory Made Conscious
Constructing the Autobiographical Self
The Issue of Coordination
The Coordinators
A Possible Role for the Posteromedial Cortices
The PMCs at Work
Other Considerations on the Posteromedial Cortices
A Closing Note on the Pathologies of Consciousness
Putting It Together
By Way of Summary
The Neurology of Consciousness
The Anatomical Bottleneck Behind the Conscious Mind
From the Ensemble Work of Large Anatomical Divisions to the Work of Neurons
When We Feel Our Perceptions
Qualia I
Qualia II
Qualia and Self
Unfinished Business
Long After Consciousness
Living with Consciousness
Why Consciousness Prevailed
Self and the Issue of Control
An Aside on the Unconscious
A Note on the Genomic Unconscious
The Feeling of Conscious Will
Educating the Cognitive Unconscious
Brain and Justice
Nature and Culture
Self comes to Mind
The Consequences of a Reflective Self
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