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One world, but a big one

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‘Explanations’ are of various kinds. They vary with the needs that call for them. The current need to ‘explain consciousness’ expresses not only curiosity about its causes but a wider uncertainty about its place in the general scheme of things. For much of this century, naive dogmatic materialism suggested that consciousness is a trivial matter with effectively no place in the world. Yet the behaviourists’ attempt to ignore our experience altogether has not proved workable. Scientists are therefore now trying to give it reputable standing by squeezing it in at the margins either of neurobiology or of some branch of physics, in the hope that this will make it ‘scientific’.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1a, Collingwood Terrace, Newcastle-upon-Tyne NE2 2JP, UK.

Publication date: May 1, 1996


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