Higher‐Order Theories of Consciousness

David M. Rosenthal

in The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Mind

Published in print January 2009 | ISBN: 9780199262618
Published online September 2009 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Philosophy

 Higher‐Order Theories of Consciousness

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There are several phenomena that constitute what we call consciousness, each of which gives rise to special problems and puzzles. One is the condition people and other creatures are in when they are conscious, as against when they are, for example, asleep, knocked out, or anaesthetized. And there is the related question about what distinguishes people and other creatures that can be conscious in that way from things that can not, such as stones and trees. We may call these questions the problem of creature consciousness. There is also a question about what it is for a person or other creature to be conscious of something. We may call this phenomenon transitive consciousness.

Keywords: theories of consciousness; creature consciousness; creatures; transitive consciousness; inner sense; higher-order thoughts

Article.  6774 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy ; Philosophy of Mind

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