The Engine of Reason, the Seat of the Soul: Philosophical Journey into the Brain
Churchland (Paul)
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BOOK ABSTRACT:

Cover Blurb

  1. A new picture of the mind is emerging, and explanations now exist for what has so long seemed mysterious. Philosopher Paul Churchland, who is widely known as a gifted teacher and expository writer, explains these scientific developments in a simple, authoritative, and entertaining fashion. He not only opens the door into the on-going research of the neurobiological and connectionist communities but goes further, probing the social and moral dimensions of recent experimental results that assign consciousness to all but the very simplest forms of animals.
  2. This is the book for anyone interested in a truly synthetic picture of what up-to-date knowledge of the brain can teach us about the nature of persons. Consciousness, psychopathology1, moral knowledge, art, and the self are all treated by Paul Churchland with amazing grace. No one interested in the mind can pass up this wonderful book.
    Owen Flanagan, Professor of Philosophy, Psychology, and Neurobiology; Adjunct Professor of Literature, Duke University
  3. Churchland has a knack for vivid exposition. He makes his case with clarity, wit, and certainly no shortage of verve.
    Robert Wright, New York Times Book Review
  4. Paul Churchland's The Engine of Reason, the Seat of the Soul is an outstanding philosophical achievement, integrating artificial intelligence, brain neurology, cognitive psychology, ethnology, epistemology, scientific method, and even ethics and aesthetics, into an interlocking whole.
    W. V. Quine, Professor of Philosophy, Harvard University
  5. Churchland, a distinguished philosopher at the University of California, San Diego, believes wholeheartedly and resolutely that all mental phenomena can be reduced to neural phenomena.... This is a book to be reckoned with.... Churchland is no New Age mystic. He writes with wit and grace, and his points are grounded in substantive research and careful thought. He repeatedly acknowledges that he may be wrong about all of this. But on the other hand, he may be right.
    Lee Dembart, Los Angeles Times
  6. Paul M. Churchland is Professor of Philosophy at the University of California, San Diego and a member of its several research programs in Cognitive Science, Science Studies, and the Institute for Neural Computation. He is author of "Churchland (Paul) - Scientific Realism and the Plasticity of Mind", "Churchland (Paul) - Matter & Consciousness", and A Neurocomputational Perspective: The Nature of Mind and the Structure of Science.
Contents
    Preface – xi
    Part I – The Little Computer that Could: The Biological Brain – 1
  1. Introduction – 3
    … The Newly Transparent Brain – 3
    … How the Brain Represents the World: General Features – 5
    … How the Brain Represents the World: Fleeting Features – 6
    … Brains versus TV Screens – 7
    … Computation in the Brain: Pattern Transformation – 8
    … The Cunning of Reason: Parallel Distributed Processing – 11
    … Speed and Power – 11
    … Functional Persistence – 13
    … Toward More Lifelike Cognitive Capacities – 15
    … Theory and Experiment: Historical Parallels – 16
    … Reworking the Mirror of Our Self Conception – 18
    … The Aim of This Book – 19
  2. Sensory Representation: The Incredible Power of Vector Coding – 21
    … Taste Coding – 21
    … Color Coding – 24
    … Smell Coding – 26
    … Face Coding – 27
  3. Vector Processing: How It Works and Why It Is Essential – 35
    … Where and How Are Faces Coded? – 35
    … Simple Pattern Recognition – 36
    … Face Recognition – 38
    … Network Learning: Repeated Synaptic Adjustment – 42
    … Performance in the Trained Network – 45
    … Internal Coding and Distributed Representations – 46
    … The Emergence of Categories – 49
    … Inductive Inference, Network Style – 53
  4. Artificial Neural Networks: Imitating Parts of the Brain – 57
    … Entering the Third Dimension: Stereoscopic Vision – 57
    … The Neuroanatomy of Stereoscopic Vision – 58
    … How Stereoscopic Vision Works – 62
    … Expanding One's Visual Grip on the World – 67
    … Fusion.net: A Network with Stereo Vision – 71
    … Submarine Intrigue: A Network for Sonar Perception – 79
    … NETtalk: A Network that Reads Aloud – 84
    … Vector Coding at the Output End: Sensor/motor Coordination – 91
  5. Recurrent Networks: The Conquest of Time – 97
    … The Temporal Dimension of Behavior – 97
    … Recognizing Causal Processes – 104
    … Ambiguous Figures and Recurrent Modulation – 107
    … Recognition, Theoretical Understanding, and Scientific Progress – 114
  6. The Neural Representation of the Social World – 123
    … Social Space – 123
    … EMPATH: A Network for Recognizing Human Emotions – 125
    … Social Features and Prototypical Sequences – 127
    … Are There “Social Areas" in the Brain? – 128
    … The Human Capacity for Language – 132
    … Recurrent Networks for Grammatical Discrimination – 137
    … Moral Perception and Moral Understanding – 143
  7. The Brain in Trouble: Cognitive Dysfunction and Mental Illness – 151
    … Diagnostic Techniques: The Literally Transparent Brain – 151
    … CAT Scans – 152
    … PET Scans – 152
    … MRI Scans – 154
    … Apraxia and Motor Dysfunction – 158
    … Perceptual and Cognitive Dysfunction – 163
    … Mood Disorders and Emotional Dysfunction – 174
    … Social Dysfunction – 177
    … Therapies: Talk versus Chemical and Surgical Intervention – 181
    Part II - Exploring the Consequences: Philosophical, Scientific, Social, and Personal 185
  8. The Puzzle of Consciousness – 187
    … Some Cautionary Parallels – 187
    … Is Consciousness a Brain Process? Leibniz's View – 191
    … The Elusive Contents of the first-Person Perspective: Nagel's Bat – 195
    … Sensory Qualities Once More: Jackson's Neuroscientist – 200
    … Mentality Without Reduction: Searle 's Hybrid Position – 203
    … The Contents and Character of Consciousness: Some First Steps – 208
    … Reconstructing Consciousness in Neurocomputational Terms – 215
  9. Could an Electronic Machine Be Conscious? – 227
    … The Turing Test and a Bit of Fun – 227
    … The Defects of the Turing Test and the Need for Real Theory – 234
    … Building an Artificial Brain – 236
    … Some Principled Objections to Machine Intelligence – 244
  10. Language, Science, Politics, and Art – 253
    … Intelligence Differences: Between Individuals, and Between Species – 253
    … Is Language Unique to Humans? – 257
    … Dennett's Language-Centered Theory of Consciousness: A Critique – 264
    … The Role of Language in Thought and Consciousness – 269
    … Theoretical Science, Creativity, and Reaching Behind the Appearances – 271
    … Cognitive Progress in the Moral and Political Domain – 286
    … Neural Representation and the Many Forms of Art – 294
  11. Neurotechnology and Human Life – 299
    … Medical Issues: Psychiatric and Neurological Medicine – 299
    … Medical Issues: Neural Networks for Diagnosis and Treatment – 302
    … Legal Issues: The Birth and Death of the Self – 305
    … Legal Issues: Sociopathology and Corrective Policy – 309
    … Turbocharged Science: Using Neural Networks for Research – 314
    … The Impact on Our Self Conception – 319
  12. Selected Bibliography – 325
    Index – 327

BOOK COMMENT:

Hails from 1995. How does it compare with:-
"Churchland (Patricia) - Neurophilosophy - Towards a Unified Science of the Mind/Brain",
"Churchland (Patricia) & Sejnowski (Terrence) - The Computational Brain" and
"Churchland (Patricia) - Brain-wise: Studies in Neurophilosophy"?



"Fodor (Jerry) - Review of Paul Churchland's The Engine of Reason, The Seat of the Soul"

Source: Fodor - In Critical Condition - Polemical Essays on Cognitive Science and Philosophy of Mind

COMMENT: Review of "Churchland (Paul) - The Engine of Reason, the Seat of the Soul: Philosophical Journey into the Brain"



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