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(2013) Origins of mind, Dordrecht, Springer.

Evolving consciousness

the very idea!

James H. Fetzer

pp. 225-242

Abstract Discovering an adequate explanation for the evolution of consciousness has been described as "the hard problem" about consciousness that we would like to understand. The difficulty becomes compounded by the introduction of such notions as the unconscious or the preconscious as its counterparts, at least for species of the complexity of human beings. An evaluation of the prospects for unconscious factors as exerting causal influence upon human behavior, however, depends upon understanding both the nature of evolution and the nature of consciousness. This paper sketches a theoretical framework for understanding both phenomena in general with regard to their various forms and suggests the evolutionary function of consciousness in genetic and in cultural contexts. It becomes increasingly apparent that, given a suitable conceptual framework of minds as semiotic systems, the evolution of consciousness may not be such a "hard problem", after all.

Publication details

DOI: 10.1007/978-94-007-5419-5_11

Full citation:

Fetzer, J. H. (2013)., Evolving consciousness: the very idea!, in L. Swan (ed.), Origins of mind, Dordrecht, Springer, pp. 225-242.

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