Cover image for Consciousness
Hobson, J. Allan, 1933-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Scientific American Library : Distributed by W.H. Freeman, [1999]

Physical Description:
xi, 258 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 25 cm.
Subject Term:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Central Library BF311 .H57 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



This volume presents a critical overview of current conceptions of conciousness, relating it to specific areas of the brain and their chemical and physical states. It charts the various states of waking, dreaming and non-conciousness using theories of neuroscience, psychiatry and neurophysiology.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Hobson (Harvard Medical School) bases this interesting, wide-ranging, and accessible book in part on his own physiological and psychological experiments on sleep and dreaming. A recognized expert on these subjects, the author puts forth several different strands of thought on this ancient and still-unresolved philosophical problem. His thesis is that although consciousness is an emergent property of organic brain functions, physiology alone does not lead to a satisfactory explanation of mental phenomena; that understanding occurs only with an objective understanding of the subjective aspects of consciousness. The book is written in a free-flowing style, replete with personal anecdotes, recounted dreams, and discussions of laboratory research from a wide variety of sources. Beginning students will be particularly interested in Hobson's discussions of such topics as "the comparative psychology of waking and dreaming," "disordered conscious states" (e.g., schizophrenia), and the "uses of consciousness" in creativity and problem solving. Professional psychologists and philosophers will not learn much from this book, but undergraduates in both fields and general readers are sure to find ideas that stimulate their thinking. D. P. Kimble; emeritus, University of Oregon

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