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Consciousness, 'the last great mystery for science', remains a hot topic. How can a physical brain create our experience of the world? What creates our identity? Do we really have free will? Could consciousness itself be an illusion?
Exciting new developments in brain science are continuing the debates on these issues, and the field has now expanded to include biologists, neuroscientists, psychologists, and philosophers. This controversial book clarifies the potentially confusing arguments, and the major theories, whilst also outlining the amazing pace of discoveries in neuroscience. Covering areas such as the construction of self in the brain, mechanisms of attention, the neural correlates of consciousness, and the physiology of altered states of consciousness, Susan Blackmore highlights our latest findings.
1: Why the mystery?
2: The human brain
3: Time and space
4: A grand illusion
5: The self
6: Conscious will
7: Altered states of consciousness
8: The evolution of consciousness
Susan Blackmore is a psychologist, writer, and Visiting Professor at the University of Plymouth. Her research ranges through out-of-body experiences and claims of the paranormal to minds, memes, and the mysteries of consciousness and free will. She is a TED lecturer, blogs for the Guardian and Psychology Today, and frequently appears on radio and TV. Her books include The Meme Machine (OUP, 1999), Conversations on Consciousness (OUP, 2005), Zen and the Art of Consciousness (Oneworld Publications, 2011) and Seeing Myself: The New Science of Out-of-body Experiences (Little Brown, 2017).