Daniel Dennett, Tufts University

Friday, February 23, 2018 - 12:00pm
A32 Princeton Neuroscience Institute

“Answering the Hard Question of Consciousness: “And Then What Happens?”

Cole Porter wrote what could be seen as a love song to consciousness:  “You do something to me, something that simply mystifies me.”  Progress on theories of consciousness depends on asking, and answering, the Hard Question: what exactly does conscious experience do to me, and what does that allow/cause/permit/provoke me to do, and who or what is this me that conscious experience does something to?  Most theories of consciousness are strikingly incurious about these questions, but there is a deep reason why they are hard to answer scientifically. Still, we can answer them. They are puzzles, not mysteries.

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