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The Foreground and Background of Consciousness

Author(s): Mara van der Lugt

Journal: Erasmus Student Journal of Philosophy
ISSN 2212-9677

Issue: 1;
Start page: 6;
Date: 2011;
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This paper questions the tendency of philosophers, especially in the free will debate, to posit a certain experience of the self as introspectively obvious. It will attempt to demonstrate that introspection can create an experience of the self that is different from self-experience prior to introspection: hence, that introspection can distort self-experience. It will be argued that although there is room for the use of introspection in phenomenology and philosophy, this use should be continually questioned and open to re-examination. The concepts of a foreground and background will be introduced as a more productive way of understanding and visualising consciousness.
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