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Actual Consciousness$
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Ted Honderich

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198714385

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198714385.001.0001

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Cognitive and Affective Consciousness—Theories, and What Is and What Isn’t Actual

Cognitive and Affective Consciousness—Theories, and What Is and What Isn’t Actual

(p.249) 9 Cognitive and Affective Consciousness—Theories, and What Is and What Isn’t Actual
Actual Consciousness

Ted Honderich

Oxford University Press

Does cognitive and affective consciousness consist only in conscious representations? In only a two-term relation? Our holds on our own conscious representations give us their likeness to linguistic representions—spoken or written representations. So are thinking and wanting to be understood as only or purely representations? Understood by way of the doctrines of a language of thought, or evolutionary causalism as an understanding of representation, or relationism related to functionalism, or the persuasive lingualism of Searle and others? No. The last theory takes conscious representations to be causal intermediaries but also, more importantly, to be semantic and syntactic signs, of which it gives a good account. Conscious representations in actual consciousness are such things, but with the additional essential characteristic that they are indeed actual—as other things talked of with thinking and wanting definitely are not, say self, direction, vehicle, medium, and neural properties.

Keywords:   cognitive consciousness, affective consciousness, conscious representations, linguistic representations, pure representations, language of thought, evolutionary causalism, relationism, lingualism, actual representations

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