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Conversations on Consciousness: What the Best Minds Think about the Brain, Free Will, and What It Means to Be Human #2020

Conversations on Consciousness What the Best Minds Think about the Brain Free Will and What It Means to Be Human In Conversations on Consciousness Susan Black interviews some of the great minds of our time a who s who of eminent thinkers all of whom have devoted much of their lives to understanding the concep

  • Title: Conversations on Consciousness: What the Best Minds Think about the Brain, Free Will, and What It Means to Be Human
  • Author: Susan Blackmore
  • ISBN: 9780195179590
  • Page: 217
  • Format: Paperback
  • Conversations on Consciousness: What the Best Minds Think about the Brain, Free Will, and What It Means to Be Human By Susan Blackmore, In Conversations on Consciousness, Susan Black interviews some of the great minds of our time, a who s who of eminent thinkers, all of whom have devoted much of their lives to understanding the concept of consciousness The interviewees, ranging from major philosophers to renowned scientists, talk candidly with Black about some of the key philosophical issues confrIn Conversations on Consciousness, Susan Black interviews some of the great minds of our time, a who s who of eminent thinkers, all of whom have devoted much of their lives to understanding the concept of consciousness The interviewees, ranging from major philosophers to renowned scientists, talk candidly with Black about some of the key philosophical issues confronting us in a series of conversations that are revealing, insightful, and stimulating They ruminate on the nature of consciousness is it something apart from the brain and discuss if it is even possible to understand the human mind Some of these thinkers say no, but most believe that we will pierce the mystery surrounding consciousness, and that neuroscience will provide the key Black goes beyond the issue of consciousness to ask other intriguing questions Is there free will A question which yields many conflicted replies, with most saying yes and no If not, how does this effect the way you live your life and broadly, how has your work changed the way you live Paired with an introduction and extensive glossary that provide helpful background information, these provocative conversations illuminate how some of the greatest minds tackle some of the most difficult questions about human nature.

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      Published :2019-06-25T01:16:40+00:00

    1 thought on “Conversations on Consciousness: What the Best Minds Think about the Brain, Free Will, and What It Means to Be Human

    1. I finished reading Susan Black s Conversations on Consciousness today aah, the benefit of being under the weather over shabbat This book is definitely worth reading, because over the course of doing so, I became convinced that none of these thinkers are any closer to understand the central riddle of consciousness than the blind men grasping the elephant There is not widespread agreement on problem definitions, basic methodologies, or even what the known elements are I wouldn t say that we ve pro [...]

    2. This collection of interviews served as a great opportunity to compare various points of view and professional approaches to the study of consciousness Those interviewed fell into familiar categories neuroscientists, philosophers, cognitive scientists, those interested in Buddhist meditation, and so forth Some I was familiar with, such as Ramachandran, the Churchlands, Dennett and Searle Others had interesting ideas, that I might want to pursue, such as Chalmers and Wegner Still others I could d [...]

    3. Conversations on Consciousness consists of a number of transcribed conversations which Susan Black has had with scientists and philosophers on the question of consciousness Topics discussed include what consciousness is, where it resides, how it arises, whether it is separate from the brain, and the hard problem of the existance of subjective experience in an objective world The answers are interesting, although the bottom line is that the science of consciousness is in its very early stages, an [...]

    4. Do you have free will Is this a psychological, philosophical, or biological question This book contains interviews of psychologists, philosophers and scientists on consciousness and free will Some of the interviews are totally baffling worse than listening to politicians but most can be followed The author has pretty good grip on the science and pushes to get the same set of topics covered in each interview Her past dabblings in parapsychology and interests in meditation and memes only occassion [...]

    5. Wonderful read Scientist Susan Black addresses important questions about the nature of consciousness to eminent scientists in the field of neuroscience Can Zombies really exist, what happens when we die, what is the nature of consciousness what is it, is it an effect of the brain or something from outside us I love the little cartoons illustrating important points and the caricatures of the scientists I was relieved to see that most of the scientist were extremely dubious about the possibility o [...]

    6. Cognitive psychologist and author Susan Black interviews twenty one eminent thinkers both scientists Crick, Gregory, Ramachandran and philosophers Dennett, Searle, Chalmers about consciousness, free will, and related issues While the questions are somewhat repetitive, the answers are anything but I was stunned that many of them do not believe in free will There are new ideas on every page although the interview format precludes much depth This wonderful book could spark a hundred bull sessions I [...]

    7. A wonderfully interesting book All the Neuro science big hitters Chalmers, Dennet, Searle etc are here all concerned are cajoled by Black into giving a clear concise view of their opinions regarding one of the biggest mysteries in science Black does an excellent job of getting them to take a clear position on most of the thorny old chesnuts such as freewill, philospher s zombies etc,etc.

    8. This is one of my favorite books in philosophy of mind The author sits down and asks the tough questions to cognitive scientists, computer scientists, philosophers, mathematicians, physicists, etc It s a relatively short read, and a great way to find out what the top theorists are concluding in theory of mind.

    9. An interesting collection of diverse ideas regarding one of the great mysteries of neuroscience the nature of consciousness It can be a challenging read at times and it is driven i.e biased by the questions Dr Black asks each participant To be honest, at times the ramblings reminded me of the verse the wisdom of man is but foolishness to God However, I would still highly recommend it to anyone interested in this important existential topic.

    10. The quest for consciousness Author Susan Black interviews about 20 scientists working in the physics and biology of consciousness, and focuses mainly on the neurobiological aspects of mind, subjective experience, free will and consciousness.Consciousness is a set of physical processes that give rise to conscious experience But in order to understand the relationship between consciousness and the physical world, we need to know the nature of physical reality This leads us to quantum physics and t [...]

    11. I really liked this book At first glance it seemed rather daunting, since it is a collection of interviews on consciousness with scientists and philosophers who have spend a lifetime dealing with the problem of consciousness But the interviewer has a background in the same field and managed to cut thru some of esoteric stuff But that do you really mean.The questions all follow the same general theme What is consciousness, what it the problem with it, what got you interested, how have you studie [...]

    12. This is a great read if you are interested in being introduced to the philosphy and science of consciousness Susan Black converses with 20 of the most well known scientists and philosophers of our time She generally asks the same questions to each of them but also uses their answers to go off script and get a deeper understanding of certain subject matter It really gets to the heart of what makes us human why did nature give us this ability Topics include the hard problem, free will, qualia, phe [...]

    13. This brought me back to my college studies psychology and cognitive science It s a great read if you re interested in either of those topics, but specifically I d say this is a philosophy of mind book It brings up many of the philosophical arguments over the study of the mind and what it means to have consciousness.That might be intimidating, but this book isn t dense The couple dozen interviews with philosophers, neuroscientists, neurophenomenologists , etc are lively and bring up a lot of int [...]

    14. This book is quite fun to dip into Many bite size chapters of separate conversations with the prime movers in consciousness philosophising over the last few decades There are some interesting angles pursued and I particularly like the insistence on the freewill question and also the way such theorising has an impact on the thinkers everyday life.Unfortunately this will not serve as a great primer on the subject because the nature of conversation is that it rambles from the point and each of the [...]

    15. Excellent series of interviews with many of the leading famous figures in consciousness studies Dennett, the Chalmers zombie guy, Penrose, John Searle, Thomas Metzinger etc Black does an excellent job as an interviewer Although she has her own definite opinions on the subject she claims to actually experience Dennett s diffuse, bundle y self , she s open minded enough to really make sure she her subjects are telling us the truest, clearest explanation of their theories, while still giving them a [...]

    16. Take the most complex conundrums in a field and ask its leading thinkers about them in an informal setting I would love to read books in this format Susan keeps the interviewers on their toes without appearing too confrontational or biased even though she does seem to have a preference for robot geeks Ultimately, that small bias seems to be justified since the reader is left with the impression that most thinkers today are leaning towards the view that consciousness and free will are ride along [...]

    17. It s a very interesting book I confess I had to struggle a lot while reading it, because I just started to familiarize myself with this subject There were many things I couldn t understand at first The book has a useful glossary in the back but I would recommend that you read an introductory book on consciousness After reading many interviews, I started to understand better what these persons were trying to say Also, when I started to read Simon Blackburn s book Think , some things became a litt [...]

    18. Kind of an interesting book, compiling a load of interviews with scientists, philosophers the like, asking them about their thoughts on what consciousness is.It s not a perfect book Susan Black definitely has a bias you can sense it in her incongruous questions about meditation, for instance And I felt myself making mental objections to many of the arguments brought up by the interviewees.But in that it sets out to basically find out what these imperfect, but experienced and thoughtful guys thin [...]

    19. I was most impressed with Professor Thomas Metzinger s Idea of consciousness culture the impact of neurobiology , bioethics, on everyday life in the near future What will be the impact of transcranial magnetic stimulation, new molecules that can switch on off certain locus of our consciousness, info smog, Non addictive drugs that will make you happy for decades In closing he states that no great minds predicted that the Berlin Wall was going to come down anything is possible.

    20. The conversations in this book serve as short insights into different philosophical viewpoints on consciousness what it is, where it comes from, and its implications for the self and free will Susan Black is a researcher and thinker in this field herself, and she easily trades jargon with her interlocutors A newcomer to the topic might need to repeatedly reference the glossary, but I suspect that anyone with an interest in consciousness will be able to take something away something of value.

    21. I really ewnjoyed this book It s a very good and creative way of presenting the viewpoints of various different writers philosophers neuroscientists, etc in an informal, conversational way THey re all asked the same basic questions, so it makes it easy to see where each person stands on the core issues of current consciousness studies I would recommend this book both to those who are familiar with the debates and arguments behind current cognitive science, and also to those who might want just a [...]

    22. I haven t read enough of it to feel I m properly able to comment, but I had a hard time getting into it I d probably need to either know about consciousness in all it s scientific, philosophical and theoretical forms before really being able to get into it The structure of the discussions sounds interesting, in that she asked a number of different leading figures the same questions It s apparently based or taken from the idea of a Radio 4 show about it, so I m considering having a look for that [...]

    23. Ever consider the question why am I being myself Is it your instinctive drives Is it your ability to think Maybe its your ability to use a particular language Does this make you conscious But what if you considered a rat or a tiger to have consciousness Then how would you define it now So the question to ask is how can I look into your head and confirm this This book reveals the current debate and struggles scientists and philosophers face in defining what consciousness really is A very reader f [...]

    24. Lucid and informative conversations on the nature of consciousness, the problem of understanding explaining it, the possibility of free will, and other topics Sue Black speaks with Francis Crick, Daniel Dennett, R.L Gregory, John Searle, Roger Penrose, Stuart Hameroff, and than a dozen other philosophers, psychologists, and neuroscientists about the least understandable, perhaps, of all human biological capacities.

    25. I love books like this listening to experts in various fields give their opinions on what consciousness means It s back to philosophy class with questions on whether free will can exist in the material world or if we re really all clockwork, predetermined sets of actions Also, I found it interesting to hear the answers to the question of how their various researches have changed their own view of the world and their lives.

    26. Fascinating opinions on the nature of consciousness and the limitations of our ability to rationalize it Some are dogmatic than others, but this is a great read for anyone interested in how we think, or why we think, or whether indeed, we are even here A good mix of psychology and philosophy from the leading scientific minds in the field.

    27. This book can be confusing for a beginner on the topic as it contains many opposing theories and views by experts from various fields Categorising the book by alphabetical order of their names may not be ideal due to their sometimes antagonistic views The dissonance can be rather unnerving for a beginner.

    28. This is one of the best books on the topic Ms Black basically writes this as a pseudo dissertation of sorts, but her interview style is anything but stodgy These are interviews, by the way, but the the author does a fantastic job of bringing out their personality by tailoring her questioning to each This was one of the surprising books for me in 2006.

    29. While this book is worthwhile, it could have been greatly improved for me by providing a accessible introduction to this intriguing but sometimes very technical field of philosophy and neuroscience I plan to revisit this book after I obtain a stronger philosophy background in this area in the course of my MA program and see what I think about it then.

    30. Wondeful conversations with 21 philosophers, scientists and psychologists about the problem s of human understanding of our own consciousness It was fascinating to see the range of opinions A few questions were asked consistently and along the way she roped in the people and really directed questions AT them Worthy of multiple readings

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