Chapter

Emotional feelings and consciousness: a theory of consciousness

Edmund T. Rolls

in Emotion and Decision-making Explained

Published in print October 2013 | ISBN: 9780199659890
Published online January 2014 | e-ISBN: 9780191772078 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199659890.003.0010
Emotional feelings and consciousness: a theory of consciousness

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Emotional feelings are part of the much larger problem of consciousness. Different approaches to consciousness, including a higher-order thought syntactic theory are described. In the context of emotion, it is argued that there are two main routes to action. One is the emotional route, where the values that are the goals for action are specified by genes in their selfish interests. The second main route is the rational, reasoning, multistep planning route which enables gene-defined reward value signals to be over-ridden in the interests of the individual, the phenotype. These two routes, and the decision-making balance between them, have important implications for society, including for aesthetics, ethics, and culture.

Keywords: consciousness; free will; determinism; rational planning; reasoning; language

Chapter.  22046 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Neuroscience

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