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PSY425H1 S Self Consciousness Lecture Notes .doc

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Romin Tafarodi

PSY425H1 S Self-Consciousness 10/01/2013 17:13:00 ← Note: TA’s office hour changed to SS4004 on the syllabus ← ← Introduction ← Example of a cheetah: • watching a cheetah instinctively chasing its prey – it has the capability to modulate its own actions with whatever it is chasing with some sense of anticipation or at least some concurrence of movements to catch its prey • but there is no evidence that a cheetah can modify its future through capitalizing its actions – they cannot conceptualize its actions and planning ← Example of a job interview: • Anticipate a sequence of events, which is not from a hallucination of it, but a projection of the future – we know how to make a distinction between the prediction and current reality • The main reason that we can is because we are making a reduplication of ourselves – we are able to construct conceptually a construct of ourselves within a conceptualized future • Not actually time travel o A scrub jay is not actually present in both time parallel ←  connection to self-consciousness • cheetah is refined, but does not connect to the world from itself from self duplication • [exp] interruption experiment of asking how people think of themselves o came up with only 8-10% of the time that we are thinking about ourselves o but it may be highly misleading because there may be time that one is focusing exclusively on oneself – it’s misleading because it is not the only time that self is taken into consideration in one’s thoughts o it is not the case that 90% of the time that oneself is not present in awareness o in reality, almost all of the time that there is a background awareness of the self – the fact that we are not focusing on ourselves as the centre of thoughts does not mean that it is not in the background • [ex] drinking might be a use to take away the appropriating the self between our identities • [ex] addicts having conflicting desires: want for the drugs, and the want to not do them o identify with some of those desires and away from the others o everyday actions exhibit the constant struggling at different levels, not discrete presence • We cannot know if the conscience is identical from one to another person o same way applying to language: we use languages in different ways, but it does not stop us from connecting with each other • Other dissociate states: including aging and pathologies – more related to ourselves, to our desires and needs – cannot be appropriated and take on a life of its own • See ourselves in the entity of the future defines our investments in it o But oneself is a continuum as a story and what had brought one here, where one is going, as a constant defined, experienced through time. A static representation cannot be used to define as self o Fully identify with a future self does not mean that one believe in the unity of self, one can change • Pro-presence and pre-presence o Reflection is always about the past, even if it is just a milleseconds ago o All you can become self-conscious about is what has already transcend. • The historicity of action: what is action and how is it different from behavior – o Action has more a sense of urgency o Actions are behaviors with a reason – we are not concern with the causality of behaviors – first person subjectivity is taken into consideration for actions o How do we prescribe that action: people’s reason of doing so is tied with the action that they just did o Social meaning has a multiplicity to it even though it is just from one single physical act – but we understand the winking differently because we belong to certain cultural bounds that determine the meaning the reason behind the doer the receiver and the onlooker o You cannot understand the action without understanding the past of the person (missing the whole dimension of doing the action and its reason) o We need to understand the past to know where we are right now because we occupy a moral space that determines where we are right now – self with a personhood is ALWAYS about understanding ourselves with time o Recursive sense of self by re-constructing the past and re- wondering  in a cycle ← [example] reading a novel with a character changes over time – you talk about the character in a singular sense, but the word used is in a hedged way because there has been changes • real pathos in identity crisis, brokenness – fear that we will end up like that ← 1. Plurality of self-consciousness: • Duality of identity: “I can see that the person is me.” o [example] seeing oneself in a picture o using the personal pronoun in 2 different way o this implies about how we experience ourselves using subject of consciousness and object of attention of selves  reflecting and observing ourselves  binary aspects of this: we oscillate between senses of “I” by being someone and observing someone  we can occupy a social position because we can only do this by using the same social position that we judge others  children who did not grow up with proper social stimulations cannot fit into normal life and full capacity of self-consciousness  most from social to internal – the ability we understand from facilitating with others o aware of both at the same time ← 2. Terminology • Self: when we use it in relation to consciousness, it is defined primarily by the ability to take up itself as the focus of attention. It can train its own capacity to do so • subjectivity: o a first person experience – a experience is always an experience of something else o in a political sense: draws into itself a consideration – the issue of social powers o a personal thing, a freedom; but the other side, the duality of it means that we are at the mercy of the world, which includes other people – to be the subject of experience o [analogy] by Jackson: the Mary’s room example: condemned to live in a B&W room and never been exposed to color, but she is a scientist who studies colors. She knows all the facts about color, but she has never experienced colors. One day, she was let out of the room, and was able to experience color for the first time.  Question: is there any increment that she has learned from the first-person apprehension about color   the heart of subjectivity because subjectivity is defined by what it is like to experience subjects in a personal, direct way o the way we understand subjectivity is by first-person experience o [ex] going to a film, we don’t just talk about the film itself, but how it seems to us, how we feel about it o [note] this course is about how subjectivity is changed and formed – investigating, questioning our own idea about subjectivity does change our subjectivity – we try to understand human action and there will be a counteract effect that might change the students themselves by the inquiries. o Need to also consider the biological substrate of self- consciousness and understand our limits  Cultures and cultural movements changes faster, the friction created by these changes create tension to our existing forms of subjectivity –  We are studying ourselves o  Not fixed concepts  we cannot pin a person to study and expect it not to change o [example] the Milgram experiment was read by a lot of people – people are acutely aware of this research, it made people self-conscious about how we act to illegitimate authorities. It changed social structures through the increased awareness of self-consciousness  doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t study this just because it is a changing item • Identity: o Identity applied to people will never be too strict and static o 1. The importance of this continuity relates to the regular function of society  [analogy] if you wake up everyday with new set of feelings and consciousness, then society cannot be structured as the way it is. [ex] convicted of the crime you committed at a point in the past o defines the sole of our society and community because people want to be able to count on those familiarity of the person from continuity o personal identity: what does it consist of? How do we know that someone is the same person. What criteria do we turn to justify this o the continuity isn’t just about the similarity, but also about logical connections across time and our memory about ourselves in time o [Q] At what point do we say to ourselves that we are falling apart, that we cannot hold all of this together anymore? o 2. The other side of identity: that it has to be in a social context: colored by social identities  The way we learn about ourselves is related to the meaning of how it is related to someone else  [ex] asking 100 people to tell their stories and found that there are a lot of overlaps between these stories in content and context  because the way we make sense of our own sense follow social scripts – nested within whatever cultural resources that are available to us.  People’s ability to tell these stories are built out of hearing, telling, and retelling these stories over their lives o 3. Identity as sanity as recognizability – that other people can recognize it as well  A set of expectations accompanying the occupation  Aspects that pertains characteristics that is common  Also provides to oneself what to expect from one’s own future o 4. Identity as person and personhood  ties our identity as ourselves to others  through which we include ourselves in ways informally, intuitively to attribute to person identity ← Self-Consciousness Lecture 2 10/01/2013 17:13:00 ← How do we do these readings? • The criterion by which you should assess is the ability to speak to another person about what it is about • Information gained • We spent a lot of our psychic energy to make sense out of what it means to us o ← ← Foundations ← - essential phenomenology of self ← ← Truism - The world moves all of us – Taylor • It makes lives worth living • It moves in all directions, moves us through the mediation of ourselves o Central mediation of the subject o Interpretation is not a annex to life, it is something that we always do to encounter humans and environment around us • [ex] thermoregulation – one way it’s reflected in conversing with people is slowing down without our awareness – objective determinant entering into the environment. As time goes on, we become more aware of it. We might attribute to situational or dispositional and make sense out of it. o First, we try to assess the content o Idea that we can reflect upon ourselves to fracture our consciousness o Making sense to pre-existing notions of what it means for my speech to slow down – can only understand by the situation that I am in, which radiates to what they would like to do in relationships that is meaningful to us at the moment that makes up the trajectories. o  The pure moment is not something we can access – all the things that we are living through across moments, across time • things that go backwards by themselves, and also consist of all the moments that we want the things to move forward to. • Fully enriched experience •  There is a great difficulty that we experience if we try to define independent of the meaning of the situation for the subject himself or herself – import and significance of why we care, why we find life significant, we care about one thing happening to another, we care about the order of things happening – an objective description can be conveyed o subject and it requires a standpoint, he or she needs to be someone that cares about things, the type of caring that might produce shame o any sort of reductive account of consciousness not using this kind of phenomenology, can’t model after animals that don’t feel shameful – they just don’t feel shame, they don’t have a sense of subjectivity and transition of the objective world o Developmental psychology: the emergence of social emotions happen in toddler years (~36 months )  Physiological: blushing, averting the eye, poor quality to the posture – to hide from the scrutiny of others  If shame “emerges”, why wasn’t it there before – they haven’t gotten to the point of realizing “self” and your “ideal self” – and the person that you think you are being is appearing less of your crtierial self – you are beneath of what you should be  Requires the emergence of self, a self that is not just physical recognition  The self-consciousness – shown through playing at different roles  Why do people enjoy role play: • Exploratory behavior • Exploring different personality •  through being others, you discover more about yourself – the friction between your habitual self and the role you are playing teaches what defines the regularities •  1. the friction defines one’s subjectivity • 2. another part: develop vocabulary and scripts of what to do through interactivity – not incidental – roles interlock, roles that consistute each other [ex] doctors and patients o the roles are obligations, arguments, and predictabilities o imposed upon by others • 3. Pleasurable because * o recognition that occupies a position that others can see and understand means that you now belong to a community, means that you are now part of something that is bigger that yourself o a sense of competency – knowing what those roles are o reinforced by parents – accomplices in helping their kids o learning what the world is like from particular stand point o the biological distinctiveness is not going to count for these articulation in situations – individuation o put together similar biological blocks in distinctive ways • The subjectivity of one that is constituting a self that is different from all the others – talking about the subjectivity of one wanting to be – can also be mediated from the physical entity o Plasticity of human o Elaboration of people do diverge dramatically  [ex] anger as a potential destructive view by the Bali – they would suppress the emotion, but they make sense out of it in different ways – correlates to the strong articulation mentioned by Taylor o We can take a stance on our own first order standards  Sometimes through language – with a whole web of terms  Necessary for the articulation of the language of shame  We need concepts that constitute the meaning of shame ← Hume: low level bedrock subjectivity that unifies experiences that we can call our minimal self • For logical purposes, we must all have that bedrock of subjectivity • The implication is that somehow there is a sequential to this which remains unpolluted and untouched through culture and environment that we have been through • Once we developed the capacity for that, how does it not transfer to the bedrock? o It can be affected by what comes after the development, but it can also not • To develop language, it is a monumental thing that happens in a momentary thing • Cartisian experience: refers to the phenomenon of not giving mind to the selfhood from the body, or mind to the body ← Precursory process of micro-attention before the concept of “mine” for infants that induce the “want” • [def] qualia – actual feel of things ← Chimps do show social emotions ← ← We don’t uphold the self on our own – no individual is carrying the personhood on their own – getting ripped out of the comfort zone that you don’t know anyone about it • Loss a sense of self • Weakening of something • Others who know us may reinforce and participate in our identity o They shape our identity by influencing our thoughts and beliefs o Feedback – approve and disapprove, naturalize through expectations o Create a social space o  To be a person with others is always making a claim  [ex] someone showing up at your door, they said that they are pest exterminator – thus establishing a claim of what is expected out of them  the identity is not only related to, but consist of  “this is who I am, and this is what I expect from you in the normal situation”  he or she has the right not to expect that you are not going to act out of your role and do their jobs for them  identity claim  [ex] meeting someone for the first time on the street is no different than other types of identity discover through normalize conversations by figuring out what you stand – how should I treat you by defining physical discourse – you are telling me this is how you should position me – don’t do it by holding a sign, but doing it by drawing certain cultural knowledge  we don’t do this methodically either, we learn how to do this through the art of conversing   where the friction comes from to – others making a claim that you don’t agree with • [ex] more than one person want to lead o parents don’t sit around idly and let their children find their own identity, all sorts of authoritative figures influence or try to influence children finding their identities – when children or teens no long accept those identities, frictions are created  the self that they are trying to be has to be a way that they feel/perceive to be authentic  contrast of those – use those to hold up our identity  once you have built an identity that is strong enough to feel/perceive to be standing on its own – you may backtrack to imitate other identities – once you are older, or have kids of your own ← From neuropsychiatric disorders, we understand self by – Sacks • “ If a man has lost a leg or an eye, he knows he has lost a leg or any ete; but if he has lost a self-himself-he cannot know it, because he is no longer there to know it” – Oliver Sacks • Homo interpretans • Amnesia from over alcohol consumption – [ex] Mr. Thomson o Constant in a state of frantic o He is frenzy in a way that he is fabricating – but they think that they are telling the truth in their own subjective mind o There is no difference between one story that he tells from another one o He cannot remember who he is – come up with a story that seems significant to him  This action is taxing, but he still does this because he’s trying to create a foundation of who he is, otherwise everything would fall apart – in order to have a sensible, normal ground that is not psychotic, we have to come in to a situation and assimilate to whatever identity we hold – when things becomes uncertain when we are ripped out of the situations we are used to, we lose a sense of self identity  The places that we choose to go is part of our identities – who you are is in large part why you are here o Poetically in a way that we have a sense of who we are • Sacks feels sorry for Mr. Thomson because he has a rough sense – when there is no one else around, it seems like it is the only time that he slows down o What’s implicit in the institutional setting?  He has to fit himself into it in some rational way o An impulse to re-create a motive to be himself • Jimmy G – someone who is stuck in 1945 o Another amnesia that the patients remember a bit of the past from far away – a lot of the patients family preserve the home to the past that the patients are comfortable with  When you take them away from their comfortable spaces, and put them in hospitals for assessment – they would freak out – none of the marker they can hang onto their distant past – there is nothing there that can sustain them – hang on to those recognitions o Sacks feels worse about Jimmy G than Mr. Thomson because Mr. Thomson doesn’t have that sense of uncertain, he doesn’t know that he is stuck o it is more tragic for someone who is stuck and loses his/her sense of self than someone that is a demolition of identity  confabulation  over-fixate on the same thing that they can hang on to  re-telling the same stories over and over again – the reiteration of it can help what is losing bits by bits – embellishment • Asomatagnosia: misrecognition – defy our ability to identify what we are going through o Ultra Egos (book) dealing with a woman that disidentify with her own arm  Try to remove this object o They can move it, but they won’t be subjectiviely saying that they are moving it o A dissociation – they hate this alien object – the disidentification seems to have a o Sub-agency of asymmetry o Disconnecting part of self to the rest o A unity without the part - holding together the body and mind o Why the hatred to the body part:  Conflicting identity  The body part, because of the neural trauma or disease, it becomes a disowning statistics part of yourself  The parts of ourselves that we are trying to distant ourselves becomes an alien to our identities  Extreme identities  Trauma or disease becomes opportunity to disown ourselves o We are always trying to hold together and owning up to what is the idea that is ourselves o Biological trigger of the break down cases of the same thing that we always do o The everyday of defining aspects simply comes out – ← Consolidating for a image – a point of focus for them to hold themselves together • Enabling us to maintain an illusion of integrity ← ←  the theory, condition of self is ever evolving culturally. The molecular structure of self is not always the same. We work with our own thoughts and feeling, and thus it has infinite numbers of combinations. We are constantly working through our feelings in first, second, third order recipients. We are doing it in particularly bounded. To understand the historicity of self, we are not only trying to understand who we are, but also an act of constitution. Even if we can’t change the bedrock state of self, we are still changing the substrate of self. Self-Consciousness Lecture 3 10/01/2013 17:13:00 ← Self in non-human ← Why should we care about this subject? • We want to study our evolutionary predecessors to understand ourselves • Through the contrast, we can learn more about ourselves • In a moralized world, we have responsibilities (self-prescribed) to work with these other species and to develop some sort of foundation for moral standards to deal with these animals ← Discontinuity or not between human and primates • Aristotle’s Engima: refers to the essence of any important beings. Human beings are put on a pedestal. Human beings’ soul is defined by reasoning. o This commitment of discontinuity between human beings and animals. Human beings carry among themselves free will • The big changes came with Darwin of evolution – that humans are part of this natural order, but then how do we come about? Are we exempt from this chain of nature selection? – Darwin: no we are not, and he tried to close the gaps of discontinuity in his books. o Things appear to be more discontinuous than they really are because many of the intermediate animas are distinct. o No surprise that there are a lot of human cry and debate • Gallup: trying really hard to maintain that discontinuity between human beings and other primates – but really, it’s not that clean, there are a lot of ambiguities. o We don’t have clear lines here o The debates lye upon if these rise from metrological or anthological ← Individual development and its impression on our evolution past • See the morphological changes in embryos  to the notion that we can somehow learn about our evolutionary past by looking at our individual changes and development • Difficult to confirm any sort of debates on • The constraint phase of people, they seek out the most economic account – the baroque explanation always fail short to the simplest explanations – because the scientific world prefers to fit this simplest theory with other simple theories for practical reasons o If you can explain what these non-human primates are doing with fewer attributes, then you go for that explanation ← Gallup: the adaptation of the person in the form of task in controls • The red dot test: you want to understand if chimps understand themselves as themselves in the mirror o Phase 1: put a mirror in front of the chimp and observe them  Fear or flight, aggressively, or stressfully – think it’s another chimp  This however changes and start to develop self- exploratory behaviors – to locate objects that they cannot otherwise see without the mirror – figures out the mirror can facilitate other spatial conditions  Most chimps do this o Phase 2: the chimps are knocked out and placed red dot on them on places that they would not see without the mirror  Try to see if the chimps notice the marks without the mirror o Phase 3: bring back the mirrors – they want to see what happens when the mirror is re-introduced,  If the chimps reached up to the marks on their faces and not the marks on the mirror or not   what does this actually show?  It does display a rather profound of intelligence that recognize the function of the mirror  Concept of yourself as distinct object • Gallup already believed that chimps have the knowledge of self • Children usually pass the red dot test after 24 months – graded acquisition of more and more complex – there is something there in the mirror-self-recognition in this experiment, but we can’t be certain about to which extent the self-recognition to the self of these chimps • Chimp goes back to self-exploratory when tested a year later – the sense of spontaneity • Big jump between behavioral consumptions and reasoning about beliefs o As far as we know, only humans have beliefs, but researches have sought to understand those behaviors that requires some level of thinking behind them. Ie. Memories and sense of time in scrub jays – the concept of recollection o When you try to describe this mental capacity in non-humans and see if they recognize themselves or themselves as objects, you undeniably require the use of I and me for these primates o No one is denying that non-human primates have concepts, but those concepts are not symbols, not the ways we use linguistic concepts  Can we use the acquisition of concepts in chimps to see if they have TOM, and not just use the mental concepts in self-recognition? ← TOM in non-humans • Theory of Mind: used to understand the minds of others by presupposing they we all have minds of our own • Since the moment that we were born, people were talking to us, a lot is happening for infants and children’s development • The product of subjectivity is not left to find for ourselves, we were told by our caregivers o What is the adaptive function of speaking to infants in ways that they won’t understand yet? – ushering them into the capacity of language and conscientiousness o Parents are always treating their offspring more than they are at the moment, thus the offspring and parents mature each other • Empathy study and emotions in non-human animals – without attachment o Grieving process in animals, a part of a whole repertoire that is hard to look pass o Criticism: we are studying a deformed version of these creatures o Empathy is related to self-awareness from the stimulation theory – stimulating their experience using your own stimulation as a guide • We share with chimps a great deal in terms of our biological endowment o Even though it may relate to a small subset of genes, it makes all the difference. We do what they do, and we do so much more in terms of self-awareness • Is it the only way to justify other species is by the affinity to us? o [Tafarodi] you don’t need to use this to argue for the protection and sustainability of those species, there are a lot other things you can do • what type of emotionality and complexity can be seen in non- human animals? o Kenyan monkeys have ways to communicate to each other to avoid their predators. They use different type of signals to communicate about different types of predators. They have a great deal of distinction to see who has made the call. They would look at the young monkey’s mother if the youngster made the call – some sort of social cognition – but do they need to understand the mental state of each other, just a fixed action pattern – what each monkey can do about the predators in terms of their physical distance to the threat does not play a role in their communication – there is not evidence of the use of mental concepts present in this state • Empathy o Feels safe, but move quickly from this empathetic subjective world and morph into a state of how do I care for that person o It’s not just simply re-creation of that situation, but a ally form and substrates of virtual connection with the person who is feeling this emotion • Narcissistic personality – too occupied with own concerns that there is no rooms left to care for others ← Language acquisition in non-humans and infants • Humans are able to evolve forward culturally because of language through mentalistic concepts and materialistic concepts ← Full selfhood – by Zahavi • Gallup uses the red dot test to show the selfhood of chimps, but nobody is concerning that they have some sense of concepts, but is it really a category of self? There is a familiarity from one to one’s own body, but is it a necessary category of self? • Developmentally, the physical recognition may be required for a sense of self • His minimal self is precategorical – a stream of consiousness that is not categorical • But his use of “self” even in the “precursory self” may imply a sense of self • The worst way to experience the presence of the world – sensation – you negotiate your feelings around the world with that body o “I move and my leg comes with me.” o Through the physical body that our agency emerges o We start with a body and we start with moving that body through space – we come to understand the mind is the body – our will to things o Must be some kind of growing sense of mediation of the body – the coherence of the body, it must be the body that carries through this direction o Struck a whole cascade of self-awareness and language use – into a more mentalistic category –  Language and behavior move hand in hand • How was it that we move in this direction and other primates did not? o What was the event? The transition? That transpire to this direction o Body size got bigger before we remain in the tree  Greater danger of injury through falling  As the body size got bigger, having to move through the branches of trees, you have a very refined sense of self-awareness of your body – produce the new pressure to become more aware with the body – clambering: hypothesis testing by trying different possibility of body and space before committing the next step of action  Needs to be tentative through enhanced awareness and sensitivity of the body  One explanation – a popular one, and a controversial one • The sense of your body becomes alien to you, you just don’t feel like your body is part of you anymore o Complications – feels dis-equilibrium – self conscious becomes fracture through the disassociation with the mind o A special relationship with the body The pain comes from the disconjunction of the brain (mind) and the body Self-Consciousness Lecture 4 10/01/2013 17:13:00 ← Facebook group: contact ← [email protected] ← ← Development • [ex] Hollywood – addresses cultural anxiety o Our cultural anxiety: seeming breach between ourselves as infants and toddlers and ourselves as adulthood  failed memory recall before the age of 3  we live in this underlying discontinuity, but we still know that we were infants and toddlers once. We accept these facts o Hollywood creates talking babies – binds that breach, help us feel that babies are just like us o Disney also does this by bringing us talking animals with human-like emotions ← How do we go from infants to adults? What needs to happen to make this possible? • We can’t access this because they (infants) can’t talk to us • We understand younger kids mainly because of context • We want to understand these entities nonetheless o “I want to know what it is like for a bat to be a bat. Yet if I try to imagine this. I am restricted to the resources of my own mind, and those resources are inadequate to the task. I cannot perform it either by imagining additions to my present experience, or by imagining segments gradually subtracted from it, or by imagining some combination of additions, subtractions, and modifications.” – Nagel (1974) • Recognition that our identity depends on our bodies o Some spiritual identity – the horror is that if you take away my body, which is the vehicle of the thoughts and feelings, then I will no longer feel like myself ‘ o  why these art, literature, and Hollywood help, to help us understand o None of these creatures are supposed to talk to us ← Development of self-awareness • 28 weeks of developing in terms of neural circuits – a lot going on in terms accelerated maturation, but in terms of self-awareness: • there is a lot going on in terms of the wider locus in the environment • needs to take into account of relationships – not only developing with others, but also through others • infants can mimic tongue protrusion, but they can also imitate the direction of the tongue o not yet crawling (which happens between 7-11 months) o physical learning is accompanied by language acquisition ← Challenge for the researchers: • 2,3 year-old: use language as mirror of self-awareness, before that, can only use behavior as signals of self-awareness development • Parents will look at the child, and decide on what they perceive as what the child’s needs and wants are, and then make assumptive response – and the child learn to imitate back, but it’s not simply the case that learning to fitted emotions production because the child has what the parents do not – the child actually feels something o internal/external kind of congruence o the child would try to make sense of his/her internal state and the parent’s feedback o seeing emotions as reflective • Can rapture this interaction through [ex] space/time paradigm and not allow the child to read the parents’ response – an asynchronous response of the parents o Can sooth the child by videos o [method] Rapture this by having the parents image (dressing in the same clothes) from a day before  The child then becomes upset and cry   child has the need to achieve an emotional regulation. The infant can’t do this on his/her own. Thus, when the emotional balance assistance is not completely synchronized, the child becomes upset • Another example: depression in mothers o The parents not providing the emotional support because they can’t o Therefore the infant feels uncomfortable – and this is also why the infants of depressed mothers cry so much • Distinction between primary subjectivity and the allegedly one (secondary) o the big change, shift of dyad becoming triad with the introduction of objects  heuristic value of the mother holding for their infants – what sense is my mother making out of this, how do I respond to this   social referencing – the outside world is meaningful insofar as other people, especially the mother, in terms of the experiential aspects of new objects interaction o Joint attention – the child direct the parent’s attention to something that he/she is focusing on, or the other way around. This is why the parent would draw the child’s attention from towards them (the parent) to the object by using sounds and other stimuli ← Why is this significant for self-consciousness? • Some sort of communality to shape out reality – philosophically, this may be the closest we can get to reality • Big part of the reality between the child and their reality is other people. • Once they hit the crawling stage, the child is no longer held hostage through people’s arms and laps. o [ex] double touching sensation – touching own arm: the feeling of the arm and the reception from the fingers o in addition to experiencing his or her own body, the body is being understood as an object of the space than other people can experience, including the parents o  the social objectification of the self, and then it becomes of value after 2, 3 year-old with the help of language acquisition o the child is not understanding of his/herself as the moral bureaucracy as an entity (Charles Taylor)  [ex] if you are asked to tell a story, you would refer many forms of positioning against the good/bad, the locations, and temporal sense   legitimately to say that we are constantly positioned in a moral space all the time – the moral typography(?)   a narrative identity – not just a form of identity, but it is identity in adulthood  when people talk about loss of self, it’s not just about memory loss, but also the loss of moral space • With infants before 24 months use the word “me,” or “I,” it may not be taken in its full form because they don’t yet understand the concept of I and the fact that everyone can be an “I” o When the child knows how to use “I” and “me” its full meaning, then they have arrived the moral developmental stage non-existing before o The use of “I” and “me” is a platform of learning about self o Children use words before fully understanding their meanings, but the children grow into these words ← The use of “I” • [ex] episodic memory: why does it require an “I”? o if it doesn’t, then how would it be temporal or spatial at all? o Couldn’t happen otherwise – can’t make memory without “I” when normal memory, “I” is already in it • A conceptual achievement that we grow into • If “I” is required for encoding memory, it may be why that we don’t have any memory prior to the age of 3 • What would a memory without “I” set in time be – hallucination o To have a memory without the reflectivity of self – may be the same experience as non-human primate thinking o We’d call it “episodic-like memory” • Would cultures that put more emphasis on “we” have different models for encoding memory? o Different formality of the use of “I” o Possible the way we experience ourselves depends on the format of languages o But on the other hand, that there may be a language of mind that is independent of the speaking language ← Social mediation of self-consciousness ← Parental interaction • Pro-conversational play and reciprocal feedbacks, we can see what is being mirrored and what is not – the emotions are the things being mirrored • There are others out there that have an investment in the identity – now the children are starting to put that knowledge in use, culturally – they have to figure what the constituent of socialization • To imitate some kind of socialization by identifying those particular actions with particular social position • Requires some cognitive sophistication – part of how we develop into our full reflective self – role and play is crucial because it provides the children with different perspectives – o To understand the game of baseball is first to understand what each position is for, how it works, and how the positions fit together to form a con-jointed game o Role and play allows children to switch back and forth o Chimps can create a situation cooperative task, one chimp needs the other one to pull a lever to get the food  Chimps can, and monkeys can’t, switch roles. For monkeys, the initial acquisition of the roles may interfere with the later learning of the other role (whereas chimps don’t need to learn the other role, and can switch from observation).  Chimps are learning in complementary fashion what their partners are doing  It’s the way thing fit together that determines how humans and chimps learn “the game” o  A distillation of all sorts of different position – a generalized capacity – the logic of how different roles fit together • a generalized judgment that we all do all the time, switching out of ourselves and create a social space that is internalized and later come out by condemning yourself as a second person o the generalized reality will be different for everyone because of our separate experiences and our different values • Generalized others – we distinguish between the case of what we think is reality – a truth game from a partisan position in the past – a perceived reality o When we are judging ourselves, we may project other people in our lives acting as the judger o May have the danger of over-objectifying ourselves Self-Consciousness Lecture 5 10/01/2013 17:13:00 Test next week • Taking positions on the core issues of the course • No right or wrong position, only better or worse argument • To prepare: dialogically with someone else – to cooperate with you to develop positions on those questions - until you feel comfortable that you can answer those questions on your own confidently ← Self and the brain ← Mind-body problem • Descarte: dualism that mind is a super, non-physical substance that might distract the body • Problem: that we live in a physical world, we are part of it, the intuition goes, we should be constrained by this physical laws, including our mind. Therefore, we should be able to talk about our minds like any other physical things in the world. The problem is when we talk about psycho-physical relations, what are they? Those mental states will have contents, we can even specify the types of mental states that we are having at the moment. But in order for us to function socially, we have to lean on the attribution beyond the physical states, we need to have some common ground of instance to be able to communicate with others. ← [video] Neuroscientist on self and the brain • looking at the systems would make you understand consciousness, we need to understand the logic of consciousness • 1. Internal subjective experience – cannot be observed, cannot communicate this to others • 2. Problem of self: “I” know that “I” experience this. • Cannot get to the consciousness problem without getting the  problem of self. Qualia without self/subjective experience is meaningless. o There has to be meanings o [ex] apple might not mean anything for one person, but it might evoke the feeling and attempt of eating for another person • There is a limited level of reduction of neural system to self • This link of qualia and self is unique to human •  Even if we are talking about things that are non-self, it is from a perspective of selfhood. We cannot disassociate one thing from another because we are conscious from the coin of subjectivity, which is defined by self •  localization as a particular promising avenue to explore self and the body – about believing if we look at the physical (at what’s happening in the brain) we can get a glimpse of what is happening in the self. How information comes into the process of subjective experience – structures, and where things happen o different systems combine and work together to come to a creation of the subjective experience o how is the self and self-conscious come together? ← Gillihan and Farah (2005) and Feinberg and Keenan (2005) • There are a lot of different systems (physical, psychological, neural) – they find themselves forced to make distinctions of self- consciousness •  but the problem is that when you have the subjective self, there is not difference in what type of self it is that is experiencing the event o these distinctions may seem nice theoretically, but they do fall apart • Pre-frontal cortex and right hemisphere is a conclusion in Feinberg (2005), but even then it depends on the situation ← [ex] Robot needs to retrieve a battery in a room where the battery is attached to a wagon with a bomb, it goes in to get the battery and saw the bomb and brought out both the bomb and the battery, all three things are destroyed – • the robot has one objective, to get the battery, - limit of implication •  in real life, there is no limit to the implication that might happen. How do we know what parts of our knowledge system is relevant, qualified to a particular action • the robot designer then redesign the robot with solutions to wagon with a bomb – need a filter system to know which implication is relevant – took a while and found infinite combincation of possible implications •  there are infinite combinations of implications in our daily lives that are not being processed or used •   The implicit localization is broadly researched and preferred because this modularity thesis is easy to know for that it might be comforting to know there is a single locus of self that is our central input and processing. • [ex] Darwinian Evolutionary meaning of cheating – a higher level of social exchange: require some kind of constrains o There is no limit to the methods of how a person can cheat – we have to make an inference that social exchange is narrow o Need to draw from a lot of structures to achieve a higher cognitive processing • The reality that any kind of complex is going to involve a lot of different information, but the particular module is going to determine what is relevant and which one should be chosen to use ← Reflection to Gilihan and Farah (2005) • The question that where is the brain is self is a false question because the whole brain and body is self • Nested and non-nested higher cognition o There is no sort of fixed placement, and therefore no fixed functional o If any part of circuit can be part of a variety of system, then the search of localization of self is lost in meaninig ← [video] Peter Fenwick on plasticity and localization • Painting after a stroke, the painter cannot see a whole side of his body – eventually slowly return to normal • These structures show and we are able to produce changes in how the brain functions • Plasticity of the brain: a complex answer for where consciousness is for this plastic of a unit • When one wakes up, a whole lot areas of the brain excites for the awaken of self-consciousness – cannot point to a certain specific area • However much we know about the brain, we can never know the subjective conscious experience •  [ex] vacuum cleaner dissection – kind of figure out which parts are doing what, but if you forget some small unit when putting back together, the machine might not work as you think it did for each part – plasticity o we do know a lot about localization, but we are still a long way from solving the mind-body problem for the inability of capturing the first person subjective experience ← Mind-body problem in terms of intuition • Faith that what happens in the world has physical properties and there are laws that determine the behaviors of the physical matters, changes within itself and when interacting with others o When you go more complex, higher and higher, it becomes less predictable because of the lack of sophistication with simple laws, but there are still rules • [ex] But there is no law that determines the sequence of seeing it rains and grabbing an umbrella •  in my mind, what binds different mental states together logics and reasons, not laws o here is the challenge for psycho-physical relationships: physics are bound by laws, but psychological states are bound by emotions and reasons. How does the self conscious fit into the physical world • The brain is complicated and has lot of room for synchronization and combinations – actual mid-level neural assemblies – we don’t know a whole lot about it, but it is what holds everything together • [ex] mental state – the belief that the world is going to end tomorrow – how do we talk about the intuition of that belief o It’s hard to do because we think through language, but the brain is not composed of languages o Even the scripture of a single mental state, the ability that we are able to do that depends on both what’s beneath the skin, but also in part in reference to the external environment limits to this biological approach to explanation of self ← Supervenience – dependency: the mental states depends on the physical state. It also fits in our experience in a causation manner • [ex] one gets hit with a hammer, he gets upset : It leaves us to believing that the mental depends on physical • but if we change a part of the brain, then we will change a part of the mental state. • Also, if two people have the same exact physical state, then they will have the exact same mental states • Asymmetry because one depend on the other more •  we can break it down to different streams of mental experience and physical terms, there will be a lot of parts that come together • Every mental state can be defined by a physical state, many physical can lead to the same ment
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