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The New Unconscious$
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Ran R. Hassin, James S. Uleman, and John A. Bargh

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195307696

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195307696.001.0001

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Introduction: Becoming Aware of the New Unconscious

Introduction: Becoming Aware of the New Unconscious

(p.1) (p.2) (p.3) Introduction: Becoming Aware of the New Unconscious
The New Unconscious

James S. Uleman

Oxford University Press

Over the past decade or two, a new picture of unconscious processes has emerged from a variety of disciplines that are broadly part of cognitive science. Unconscious processes seem to be capable of doing many things that were, not so long ago, thought of as requiring mental resources and conscious processes. These range from complex information processing through behavior to goal pursuit and self-regulation. Much has changed since John F. Kihlstrom's (1987) description of the “cognitive unconscious.” In his influential essay, Kihlstrom describes the ways in which the computer as metaphor formed the basis for increasingly complex conceptions of human mental processes. To prove his point, Kihlstrom reviewed research on automatic processes, subliminal perception, implicit memory, and hypnosis. He concluded that “conscious awareness ‖is not necessary for complex psychological functioning.” That is, the cognitive revolution in psychology and the development of cognitive science across disciplines (including anthropology, computer science, linguistics, and philosophy) had discovered a great deal about complex unconscious mental phenomena and provided rigorous methods for studying them.

Keywords:   John F. Kihlstrom, cognitive unconscious, cognitive science, unconscious processes, information processing, self-regulation, computer, implicit memory, subliminal perception, hypnosis

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