Chapter

An Attitude Towards the Possible: The Contributions of Pretend Play to Later Adult Consciousness

Dorothy G. Singer and Jerome L. Singer

in The Aesthetic Mind

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9780199691517
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191731815 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199691517.003.0015
An Attitude Towards the Possible: The Contributions of Pretend Play to Later Adult Consciousness

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Make-believe play in children starts from about two years of age with attachment to transitional objects, play with soft toys, or imaginary playmates. The roles of pretending and story-telling play contribute to enjoyment and to cognitive, social, and emotional skills. Adults are often the nurturers and enhancers of such play. The features of childhood play may well foreshadow an array of functions of ongoing adult conscious thought. Aspects of adult consciousness are wakeful perception, identification, labeling, and encoding, guided imagery, mental trial actions, and playfulness. Childhood pretending may relate especially to the narrative components of adult consciousness. This leads to a discussion of Baars’ theory of the role of consciousness as a “theater” for prioritizing, decision-making, aesthetic appreciation, and creativity in its everyday expression, as well in the emergence of scientific or artistic products.

Keywords: make-believe play; adult consciousness; Baars; narrative

Chapter.  6647 words. 

Subjects: Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art

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