Cover image for Brain, symbol & experience : toward a neurophenomenology of human consciousness
Title:
Brain, symbol & experience : toward a neurophenomenology of human consciousness
Author:
Laughlin, Charles D., 1938-
Personal Author:
Edition:
First edition.
Publication Information:
Boston, Mass. : New Science Library, 1990.
Physical Description:
xvi, 403 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780877735229
Format :
Book

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BF311 .L28 1990 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks
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Summary

Summary

Reprint, in paper covers, of the Columbia U. Press edition of 1990. Annotation copyright by Book News, Inc., Portland, OR


Reviews 1

Choice Review

The goal of Laughlin, McManus, and d'Aquili is worthy: they want to explain the nature of consciousness from a biogenetic structuralist viewpoint. Their thesis is that consciousness can be understood best by simultaneously accounting for structural (neural), behavioral (psychological, ethnographic), and experiential (phenomenological) aspects of consciousness. Although the book presents useful information about the nature of consciousness and the relationship of symbols and rituals to consciousness, the ideas are frequently explained in a vague, amorphous fashion. In their attempt to explain consciousness, the authors at times seem to be explaining one mystery by substituting another. The gene, mind, and culture issues addressed are complicated and not easy to understand. Accordingly, though this book may be of value to readers who have a sophisticated understanding of consciousness, this is not a work for a beginner. A more readable, although quite different book that covers some of the same topics is J. H. Barkow's Darwin, Sex, and Status: Biological Approaches to Mind and Culture (CH, Apr'90). Graduate level. -D. A. Smith, Oberlin College