Skip Navigation

1993 - Volume 14, Number 3, Summer

The Ability of the Sweeping Model to Explain Human Attention: A Commentary on Christ’s Approach
Kevin P. Weinfurt, Georgetown University
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Summer 1993, Volume 14, Number 3, Pages 207-214, ISSN 0271-0137
The feasibility of Christ’s (1991a, 1991b) Sweeping Model as a valid explanation of human attention is explored. As a model of artificial intelligence systems, the Sweeping Model may hold merit, but it certainly cannot explain the phenomenon of human attention. The model’s failure in this regard is due to (1) an incomplete conception of the experience of human attention, (2) reliance on an associative neural network that cannot explain human cognition, and (3) the prominence of homunculi that reveal themselves upon closer inspection of the model.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Kevin Weinfurt, Department of Psychology, Georgetown University, 37th and 0 Streets NW, Washington, DC 20007.

Reply to “The Ability of the Sweeping Model to Explain Human Attention”
Gregory J. Christ, University of Ottawa
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Summer 1993, Volume 14, Number 3, Pages 215-222, ISSN 0271-0137
This is a reply to Weinfurt’s article (1993, this issue) examining the Sweeping Model. Overall, our positions are not as incompatible as they may seem, although I feel that his conclusion, that the Sweeping Model cannot explain human attention, does not follow from his comments. I will proceed through his article and clarify issues as they arise. Our difference of opinion may result from differing goals, with Weinfurt being concerned with more abstract aspects of cognition, and myself with basic perception and how it may be achieved before proceeding to the more abstract.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Gregory J. Christ, School of Psychology, 125 University, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K1N 6N5.

Self-talk and Self-awareness: On the Nature of the Relation
Alain Morin, Memorial University of Newfoundland
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Summer 1993, Volume 14, Number 3, Pages 223-234, ISSN 0271-0137
This article raises the question of how we acquire self-information through self-talk, i.e., of how self-talk mediates self-awareness. It is first suggested that two social mechanisms leading to self-awareness could be reproduced by self-talk: engaging in dialogues with ourselves, in which we talk to fictive persons, would permit an internalization of others’ perspectives; and addressing comments to ourselves about ourselves, as others do toward us, would allow an acquisition of self-information. Secondly, it is proposed that self-observation (self-awareness) is possible only if there exists a distance between the individual and any potentially observable self-aspect; self-talk, because it conveys self-information under a different form (i.e., words), would create a redundancy — and with it, a wedge — within the self.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Alain Morin, 823 Nouvelle-Orleans, Ste-Foy, Quebec, Canada G1X 3J4.

An Introduction to Reflective Seeing: Part I
Thomas Natsoulas, University of California, Davis
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Summer 1993, Volume 14, Number 3, Pages 235-256, ISSN 0271-0137
The human visual system allows a number of molar activities, among them straightforward seeing and reflective seeing. Both of these activities include, as product and part of them, a stream of first-order, visual perceptual consciousness (experience, awareness) of the ecological environment and of the perceiver himself or herself as inhabiting the environment and acting or moving within it. The two respective component streams of first-order consciousness both proceed at certain brain centers and, in Gibson’s sense, they are resonatings to the stimulus energy flux at the photoreceptors. But the two streams differ in that only the one that proceeds during reflective seeing involves inner (second-order) consciousness of the component first-order, visual perceptual consciousness (experience, awareness). In this sense, perceptual consciousness proceeds entirely nonconsciously during straightforward seeing. This is because inner (second-order) consciousness is not a kind of response to first-order consciousness, but is an intrinsic dimension of the latter when it is proceeding consciously as opposed to nonconsciously. The content of first-order, visual perceptual consciousness during reflective seeing is importantly different from the content during straightforward seeing, notwithstanding their both being kinds of seeing in the literal, nonmetaphorical sense as characterized by Gibson’s ecological approach to visual perception.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Thomas Natsoulas, Ph.D., Department of Psychology, University of California, 179 Young Hall, Davis, California 95616-8686.

Realpolitik in the Addictions Field: Treatment-professional, Popular-culture Ideology, and Scientific Research
Robert E. Haskell, University of New England
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Summer 1993, Volume 14, Number 3, Pages 257-276, ISSN 0271-0137
The article examines recurrent instances of personal and professional negative sanctions resulting from individual researchers publishing findings considered contrary to the historical and prevailing alcoholism and drug-addiction treatment Zeitgeist. Instances from the published literature along with personal accounts from professionals in the field are presented. It is suggested that these instances indicate a pattern of political and ideological conflicts generated from a treatment-professional and a popular-culture, nonscientifically based belief system on the one hand, versus a research-based system on the other. Implications are discussed in terms of open scientific discourse, and the consequences on addiction research, treatment, policy, funding, and ethics.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Robert E. Haskell, Ph.D., Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, University of New England, Biddeford, Maine 04005.

Neurological Positivism’s Evolution of Mathematics
Larry R. Vandervert, Spokane, Washington
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Summer 1993, Volume 14, Number 3, Pages 277-288, ISSN 0271-0137
This article describes how Pribram’s holonomic brain theory fits into Neurological Positivism’s (NP) overall perspective of the evolution of the algorithmic organization of space and time in the brain. It is proposed that the principles of holonomic theory themselves represent a dynamical “diagram of forces” that have resulted from evolutionary processes – thus the holonomic space and time in the brain. The maximum-power evolution guided self-organizing, exteriorizing derivation of mathematics from the algorithmic patterns of the preadapted human brain is described. It is proposed further that the workability of mathematics in the “real world,” far from being a mystery, is a necessary result of the origin of mathematics in neural circuitry patterns that are, in turn, encapsulations of real world dynamics. It is concluded that the organization of symbol systems is naturally approaching in power the algorithmic organization of the brain itself.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Larry R. Vandervert, Ph.D., 711 West Waverly Place, Spokane, Washington 99205-3271.

Book Reviews

Meaning & Medicine: A Doctor’s Tales of Breakthrough and Healing
Book Author: Larry Dossey, M.D. New York: Bantam Books, 1991
Reviewed by Bernie Siegel, M.D.
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Summer 1993, Volume 14, Number 3, Pages 289-290, ISSN 0271-0137
[Note: First paragraph, no abstract available.] Larry Dossey has always been brilliant at expressing the “new” medicine of the mind. In the past I wished his style had been less intellectual and more personal or anecdotal.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Bernie Siegel, M.D., c/o Institute of Mind and Behavior, P.O. Box 522, Village Station, New York, New York 10014.

The Museum of Clear Ideas
Book Author: Donald Hall. New York: Ticknor & Fields, 1993
Reviewed by Steven Connelly, Indiana State University
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Summer 1993, Volume 14, Number 3, Pages 291-296, ISSN 0271-0137
[Note: First paragraph, no abstract available.] Donald Hall is zealously and enthusiastically committed to poetry. It is his calling, his profession, his joy. He preaches poetry, he proselytizes, and he makes converts. Donald Hall’s poems and his public readings are celebrations of poetry’s essence: he persuades the audience to believe in its power and its efficacy. Hall frees poetry’s spirit and its vitality from the pretensions of academe, so that it is no longer an inert display sequestered in the exhibition halls of academic classrooms, to be illuminated at the whim of scholar-curators. This is not to imply that Hall panders to the demotic. His poems are admired and highly valued by the best writers and critics of the generation. Rather, as The Museum of Clear Ideas demonstrates, Hall’s poetry is inclusive and accessible: it rewards academics and non-academics alike, the average reader as well as the trained reader.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Steven Connelly, English Department, Indiana State University, Terre Haute, Indiana 47807.


Back to 1993