Impoverished or rich consciousness outside attentional focus: Recent data tip the balance for Overflow

Zohar Z. Bronfman*, Hilla Jacobson, Marius Usher

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

The question of whether conscious experience is restricted by cognitive access and exhausted by report, or whether it overflows it—comprising more information than can be reported—is hotly debated. Recently, we provided evidence in favor of Overflow, showing that observers discriminated the color-diversity (CD) of letters in an array, while their working-memory and attention were dedicated to encoding and reporting a set of cued letters. An alternative interpretation is that CD-discriminations do not entail conscious experience of the underlying colors. Here we argue, based on conceptual considerations and consistency with neuroscience and phenomenology, in favor of the Overflow interpretation.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)423-444
Number of pages22
JournalMind and Language
Volume34
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd

Keywords

  • attention
  • neural correlates of consciousness
  • phenomenal/access consciousness
  • summary statistics
  • working-memory

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