Consciousness, a unique and perplexing mental state, has been the subject of debate for philosophers and scientists for millennia. And while it is widely agreed within contemporary philosophy that consciousness is a problem whose solutions are likely to determine the fate of any number of other problems, there is no settled position on the ultimate nature of consciousness. This series of 12 penetrating and thought-provoking lectures by an acclaimed teacher and scholar approaches its subject directly and unflinchingly. Rather than trying to explain away consciousness, or hide behind convenient slogans like "it's all in your brain," Professor Robinson reviews some of the problems that philosophers, psychologists, scientists, and doctors face when taking on this vexing topic, addressing questions that include. What is the most promising way to study this subject? What are the implications that arise from the fact that we have consciousness? What are the ethical and moral issues raised by its presence - or absence?
Professor Robinson draws on the wisdom of the world's greatest thinkers to shed light on the ethical debates involved in any examination of consciousness, including John Locke, Ludwig Wittgenstein, and Aristotle. And he also explores the impact of modern physics and medicine on our understanding of the self. Pondering questions from the most fundamental to contemporary quandaries about artificial intelligence, you'll gain new insights into the complexity of how great minds define consciousness.
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.
©2007 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2007 The Great Courses
A very weak "not so great" course. The lecturer does not go into enough detail and fails to use clear and concrete examples for rather complex issues. Take Searle's famous Chinese Room scenario or Turing's Imitation Game. Both of these merit a detailed explanation to make sense in the context of the speaker's conceptual system. However, I understood these two concepts only because I had listened to a much better philosophy of mind course (Philosophy of Mind by P. Grimm — a truly "great course"). Much of what professor Robinson says in this course may be quite worthwhile, but he does not make himself clear enough. The only worthwhile chapters are 1, 10 and 11.
Did you ever want to know what it is to be alive and concious? Have you ever wanted to prove the consciousness of others? These things and so much more are explored thoroughly in this amzing audio book.
I was under the impression that this would deal more with the spiritual side of consciousness. It was hard to listen to at times.
"A little disappointing"
Change of title: "Philosophical Views of Consciousness (and Its Implications)"
My expectations were probably all wrong, but I had hoped to learn more about self-consciousness and what I got was an interesting but ultimately somewhat disappointing series of lectures largely devoted to the various philosophical musings about consciousness. The implications of the title are only touched upon in the last lectures.
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