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The Unity of Consciousness – Binding, Integration, and Dissociation - Oxford Scholarship Online
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The Unity of Consciousness: Binding, Integration, and Dissociation

Axel Cleeremans and Chris Frith


Consciousness has many elements, from sensory experiences such as vision, audition, and bodily sensation, to non-sensory aspects such as volition, emotion, memory, and thought. The apparent unity of these elements is striking; all are presented to us as experiences of a single subject, and all seem to be contained within a unified field of experience. But this apparent unity raises many questions. How do diverse systems in the brain co-operate to produce a unified experience? Are there conditions under which this unity breaks down? Is conscious experience really unified at all? In recent years ... More

Keywords: consciousness, sensory experiences, non-sensory experiences, unified experience, vision, emotion, audition, bodily sensation

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2003 Print ISBN-13: 9780198508571
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198508571.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Axel Cleeremans, editor
Department of Psychology, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium

Chris Frith, author

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Axel Cleeremans

Part 1 What is unity?

Chapter 1.1 What is the unity of consciousness?

Tim Bayne, and David J. Chalmers

Part 2 Binding (the mechanisms of unity)

Part 3 Dissociations (when unity breaks down)

Part 4 Integration (the emergence of unity)

End Matter