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Preview of A Philosophy for the Science of Animal Consciousness

Veit, Walter (2023) Preview of A Philosophy for the Science of Animal Consciousness. A Philosophy for the Science of Animal Consciousness. viii-12.

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Abstract

The goal of this chapter is to make the case that any biological approach to consciousness must address the teleonomic question of what consciousness in all of its gradations and varieties does for healthy agents within their normal ecological lifestyles and the natural environments in which they have evolved. An evolutionary bottom-up approach to consciousness, this chapter argues, is both possible and necessary to advance a true Darwinian science of consciousness. But to advance such an approach, the chapter will also present a new thesis on the function of consciousness: the pathological complexity thesis. The pathological complexity thesis elaborates the idea that the origin and function of consciousness lie in enabling organisms to efficiently deal with their species-specific trade-offs of their life histories. To understand health as a natural phenomenon is simply to measure how well an organism succeeds at dealing with their pathological complexity trade-offs, with fitness providing the common currency for biological design. And the origins of consciousness can be understood as the evolution of hedonic valence as a proximate common currency to enable organisms to efficiently calculate these trade-offs in their own actions.


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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Veit, Walterwrwveit@gmail.com0000-0001-7701-8995
Keywords: animal consciousness; philosophy of mind; philosophy of biology; science of consciousness
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Cognitive Science > Action
Specific Sciences > Biology
Specific Sciences > Psychology > Evolutionary Psychology
Specific Sciences > Biology > Evolutionary Theory
Specific Sciences > Cognitive Science
Specific Sciences > Psychology > Comparative Psychology and Ethology
Specific Sciences > Cognitive Science > Consciousness
General Issues > Ethical Issues
General Issues > Natural Kinds
Specific Sciences > Neuroscience
Specific Sciences > Cognitive Science > Perception
Depositing User: Dr. Walter Veit
Date Deposited: 15 Oct 2023 12:09
Last Modified: 15 Oct 2023 12:09
Item ID: 22653
Journal or Publication Title: A Philosophy for the Science of Animal Consciousness
Publisher: Routledge
Official URL: https://www.taylorfrancis.com/books/mono/10.4324/9...
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Cognitive Science > Action
Specific Sciences > Biology
Specific Sciences > Psychology > Evolutionary Psychology
Specific Sciences > Biology > Evolutionary Theory
Specific Sciences > Cognitive Science
Specific Sciences > Psychology > Comparative Psychology and Ethology
Specific Sciences > Cognitive Science > Consciousness
General Issues > Ethical Issues
General Issues > Natural Kinds
Specific Sciences > Neuroscience
Specific Sciences > Cognitive Science > Perception
Date: 2023
Page Range: viii-12
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/22653

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