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by Julian Jaynes

eBook The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind download ISBN: 0395207290
Author: Julian Jaynes
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin (1976)
Language: English
Pages: 468
ePub: 1446 kb
Fb2: 1393 kb
Rating: 4.7
Other formats: lrf doc mbr mobi
Category: Political
Subcategory: Philosophy

The term was coined by Julian Jaynes, who presented the idea in his 1976 book The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind, wherein he made the case that a bicameral mentality was th. .

1 The Origin of Consciousness.

The primary goals of the Julian Jaynes Society are to foster discussion and a better understanding of the life, work, and theories of Julian Jaynes, the implications of his bicameral mind theory of consciousness.

The primary goals of the Julian Jaynes Society are to foster discussion and a better understanding of the life, work, and theories of Julian Jaynes, the implications of his bicameral mind theory of consciousness, and the topic of consciousness in general. The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind. by Princeton University psychologist Julian Jaynes Houghton Mifflin/Mariner Books (1976, 2000). If you are new to Julian Jaynes's theory, start by reading his book, along with Gods, Voices, and the Bicameral Mind, The Julian Jaynes Collection and Reflections on the Dawn of Consciousness.

The Bicameral Mind" is the tenth episode and season-one finale .

The Bicameral Mind" is the tenth episode and season-one finale of the HBO science-fiction thriller television series Westworld. The episode aired on December 4, 2016. Its a easy and fun read. Indeed, it is almost a test - if your vocabulary of consciousness has terms that are not al - then yours is not a Jaynesian usage. A double 'indeed' is that the word "consciousness" can itself be problematic for the Jaynesian, since it is a 'state-of' word that can easily be mistaken to be representing an entity, product, or other non-processional 'thing'.

I am giving Julian Jaynes’ The Origin of Consciousness in the .

3. This condition Jaynes calls the Bicameral Mind (BM) (vs. the Conscious Mind (CM)).

The consciousness of consciousness ; Consciousness ; The mind of Iliad ; The bicameral mind ; The double brain ; The origin of civilization - The witness of history. Gods, graves, and idols ; Literate bicameral theocracies ; The causes of consciousness ; A change of mind in Mesopotamia ; The intellectual consciousness of Greece ; The moral consciousness of the Khabiru - Vestiges of the bicameral mind in the modern world.

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If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.

Precediing this development is a period where humans experienced a 'bicameral' (two chambered) mind which constisted of an aurually discerned commanding chamber (gods, spirits, voices of leaders) and a passive obeying part. The theory gains depth from his analyis which on occasions is extra-ordinariliy insightful.

Jaynes explains thoroughly in the book that both social inventions are actually the result of evolutionary advances in our .

Jaynes explains thoroughly in the book that both social inventions are actually the result of evolutionary advances in our brain structure - he claims that the two brain hemispheres were initially independent, before the corpus callosum has been developed, and that they had similar processing areas, one of which - in the right hemisphere - caused us to believe we are hearing internal voices as external. The book goes further to explain how this concept manifests itself in today’s world, when people will sometime regress back to two separate hemispheres, which explains, according to him, schizophrenia and other contemporary phenomena.

Near Fine; Dust Jacket - Very Good; Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1976. First Edition and First Printing. Octavo, white dust jacket lettered in black on spine and front cover, author's portrait photograph uncaptioned on rear cover, 467 pp. A Near Fine book, showing a few specks of foxing on top and for page edges, in a Near Fine jacket with small scale roughening at spine ends and a few points of micro-wear. See scans. Princeton psychology professor Julian Jayne's controversial but respected treatise in which he lays out his contention that the human mind was not "conscious" until about 3,000 years ago, when circumstances forced it to arise. One landmark theory in a direction of scientific inquiry which is still in its infancy. An extraordinarily scarce first printing of the first edition. l-51n
Comments: (7)
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I first bought this book shortly after it was first published -- and couldn't understand a bit of it, so it went into my pile to resell to get money for more books. But it stuck in my mind for a number of years, a feeling that something being said here was really important, so I bought it again at some point after the second printing (1990 or so). It's taken me until now to finally read it (April 2015), and I could not put it down. I agree with the reviewer quoted on the back cover that this probably is indeed one of (if not the) the most important books of the second half of the 20th century.

A number of the more recent reviews here include comments I would make. The latest review I think mistakenly states that the theory is that the two halves of our brain did not communicate like they do now -- I think the point is that unlike now, when the right hemisphere has become subordinated to the left "conscious" hemisphere, in ancient times both hemispheres worked actively, were engaged actively, and were each given equal attention. I will also say that I took both a bachelor's and master's degree in communicative disorders in the early to mid 1990s and continued until just recently keeping up to date on neuroanatomy as a practicing medical speech-language pathologist, and everything posited by Jaynes agrees completely with the more current "brain science." As it turns out, I have been a lifelong (45 years of study at this point) student of history, literature, archeology and religion, and again everything posited by Jaynes rings true.

Having just finished reading the book, I doubt that I've yet worked out all of the implications that Jaynes' theory holds for these various disciplines, but my sense is that it is immense. This is certainly a book that should be on a "must read" list. While the writing is dense and there is a huge amount of information to be absorbed here, he was also a much more literate and literary writer than most these days. You need to pay attention to his every word and often go back over statements, so it's not at all an easy read, but it certainly is a worthwhile one.
I first heard of this book while in graduate school the year it was written. As superficially described by various reviewers at the time it seemed like a crazy idea, but Kindle deals being what they are I ended up buying it about a year ago and have finally gotten around to reading it all.

Dr. Jaynes is up-front about his theory right from the beginning. Consciousness as we understand it today is a relatively new (past few thousand years) and learned phenomenon. That which contributes the most to its learning, that is how and in what ways we think of our selves as conscious beings, is the evolution of spoken and written language along with evolving social context. He begins his book by demonstrating how tenuous and vague a thing consciousness is by suggesting examples and simple experiments illustrating how much of our lives goes on apart from some experience that we take to be the core of consciousness, the relation of our sense of self, our "I" to the rest of the world.

In Jaynes' view the first humans had a consciousness much like the higher animals. There was a perceptual arena to be sure, but not any sort of recursive evaluation of it. As humans began to communicate with more sophisticated languages, languages with some grammer and structure, consciousness evolved with those changes not into today's version of it, but rather into a situation where decisions faced in novel situations were made based on the linguistic expressions of hallucinated voices. Such voices told people how to act, not in common everyday circumstances but when faced with novel situations. As human beings came together into larger groups teaching themselves to farm and domesticate animals (presumably with the help of their voices), this mechanism evolved along quite sophisticated lines into "the gods" of old speaking to everyone, but with higher gods represented in the voices of leaders, kings, priests, etc. All the idols of antiquity were not merely superstitious projections, the people, all people, actually heard them talking!

As language evolved this mechanism became sophisticated enough to support major civilizations like Sumer, Babalyon, and early Egypt, likely also similar developments in India and China. Eventually however, advancing language and more sophisticated social requirements became too much for the mechanism and it began to break down. Even so it did not disappear over-night and evolved into various oracular sorts of phenomena that we find in Greece, Egypt, and elsewhere as history progresses though the last millenium BC. Jaynes traces all of this later evolution through the nature of literature as it appears from the earliest books of the Illiad, the Old Testament, and many other sorts of documents. He points out that the notion of a self-reliant or recursive self is simply not mentioned in the earliest literature and speculates that this is not because people had no words for it, but rather that they had no words for it because they didn't experience it!

If all of this seems rather odd, it seems less odd as Jaynes applies his ideas to modern phenomena like hypnotism, schizophrenea, and the imaginary companions of some children. Jaynes here is not suggesting that schizophrenics (to take one example) are simple reversions to a human consciousness of 4000 or more years ago, because in those contexts, what was heard and how it was treated were not pathological conditions but the normal stuff of everyday life! But he does claim that the same physiological mechanisms are at work and that his theory puts such modern phenomena in a more meaningful context than other theories. As crazy as it sounds, I found myself agreeing with him as I got further along in the history and especially into the psychology. Starting out an extreme skeptic I came away at least convinced of the theory's reasonableness. If it should turn out to be true, we are not yet at the end of the story. Consciousness as we presently find it is in great part a product of language as we presently have it along with social context. Looking back from another thousand or two thousand years in the future, it is quite possible we will not recognize ourselves.