Skip Navigation

2006 - Volume 27, Number 1, Winter

Intrinsic Awareness in Sartre 

The Journal of Mind and Behavior, Winter 2006, Volume 27, Number 1, Pages 1–16, ISSN 0271–0137 

This essay argues that Sartre offers a version of the intrinsic theory of inner awareness that is based on a feature of the internal negation that determines the relation between the for-itself (consciousness) and the in-itself (the world and objects in the world): non-positional awareness. Non-positional awareness is the implicit consciousness of being conscious of an object that is a component of every conscious mental state. For example, the perceptual experience of this table is directed towards the table, but at the same time it is an awareness of itself, though not as an object. Sartre’s ontology, and his account of the structure of intentionality, provide the theoretical foundation for a coherent account of how non-positional awareness lights up consciousness of an object without itself being either a subject or object of experience. 

Requests for reprints should be sent to Frederick B. Mills, Ph.D., Department of History and Government, Bowie State University, 14000 Jericho Park Road, Bowie, Maryland 20715.

Human Consciousness: A Revised View of Awareness and Attention 

The Journal of Mind and Behavior, Winter 2006, Volume 27, Number 1, Pages 17–42, ISSN 0271–0137 

As noted in earlier work (Lonky, 2003), the continuity of consciousness is a reality, provided by the blending of the combination of both conscious aware states with conscious, but unaware ones, and where the frequencies governing the interleaving of the two states prevent us from ever directly deciphering the nature of their discrete properties. As a consequence, we cannot experience any discontinuity within the global phases of consciousness itself. The impact of this continuous cycling has major implications towards the purpose and mechanics of the aware cycle within the conscious process, as well as the role of attention. A model is presented wherein these cycles are mirrored in ocular motion, and both are related to autonomic mechanisms. Concepts are presented that argue for the aware state function to be largely centered on the management of attention, while providing feedback to the unaware cycle. The empirical concept developed is then tested against both current experimental data and several longstanding consciousness processing conundrums, with favorable results. 

Requests for reprints should be sent to Martin L. Lonky, Ph.D., CMTC, 690 Knox St., Suite 200, Torrance, California 90502. Email: martinlo@aol.com.

The Only Objective Evidence for Consciousness 

The Journal of Mind and Behavior, Winter 2006, Volume 27, Number 1, Pages 43–56, ISSN 0271–0137 

We describe what seems to be the only objective evidence for the existence of consciousness as an entity beyond its neural correlates. We display this evidence, the nature of observation in quantum mechanics, with a theory-neutral version of the archetypal demonstration of quantum phenomena, the two-slit experiment. This undisputed empirical result provides objective evidence for consciousness, the straightforward alternative being the assumption of not only a completely deterministic world, but a conspiratorial one as well. The objection to this evidence for consciousness, that a not-conscious robot could be the observer, is examined. 

Requests for reprints should be sent to Fred Kuttner, Ph.D., Department of Physics, University of California, Santa Cruz, California 95064.

Content Individuation in Marr’s Theory of Vision 

The Journal of Mind and Behavior, Winter 2006, Volume 27, Number 1, Pages 57–72, ISSN 0271–0137 

The debate concerning the individuating role of the external environment in propositional content has turned to Marr’s (1982) computational theory of vision for either verification or disproof. Although not all the relevant arguments concerning the determining role of environmental constraints that Marr invokes in his visual account may succeed, the paper argues that Marr divides his computational explanation into two parts, the information processing “what” and the constraint introducing “why” aspect. It is the second part where separate claims concerning the necessity and sufficiency of constraints are advocated, and initiate a specific computational process. The above explanation becomes subordinate to a conception of inference that closely resembles deduction. 

Requests for reprints should be sent to Basileios Kroustallis, Ph.D., 10, Agiou Dimitriou St., Corfu 49100, Greece. Email: basilisphil@yahoo.com

Genetic Relatedness and the Lifetime Risk for Being Diagnosed with Schizophrenia: Gottesman’s 1991 Figure 10 Reconsidered

The Journal of Mind and Behavior, Winter 2006, Volume 27, Number 1, Pages 73–90, ISSN 0271–0137 

This paper performs a critical analysis of Irving Gottesman’s 1991 “Figure 10,” which lists the lifetime risks of developing schizophrenia among the relatives of people diagnosed with schizophrenia. Figure 10, which has been cited in numerous psychiatry and abnormal psychology textbooks, is almost always discussed in support of important genetic influences on schizophrenia. However, the pooled results in Figure 10 can also be explained by environmental factors. Moreover, the risk percentages Gottesman reported are derived from biased research designs, some of which are based on implausible theoretical assumptions, while some results are not included. It is concluded that a closer look at the studies used to compile Figure 10 might lead psychiatrists, psychologists, and genetic researchers to decide that, in addition to problems in schizophrenia adoption research and the ongoing failure to find postulated “schizophrenia genes,” the evidence supporting a genetic basis for schizophrenia is far weaker than is currently believed. 

Requests for reprints should be sent to Jay Joseph, Psy.D., P.O. Box 5653, Berkeley, California 94705–5653. Email: jayjoseph2@aol.com. Jonathan Leo, Ph.D. can be reached at jonathan.leo@lmunet.edu


Back to 2006