The Life of the Mind

Michelle Montague

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter in a book

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What distinguishes a conscious occurrent thought from a non-conscious occurrent thought? I argue that the notion of ‘access-consciousness’ cannot provide a satisfactory answer and that we must appeal to phenomenological properties. If this is right, a further question arises about what kind of phenomenological features are required. Can we give a satisfactory account of what makes an occurrent thought a conscious thought solely by reference to sensory phenomenology—including both verbal and non-verbal imagery? I argue that we cannot, and that we must appeal to ‘cognitive phenomenology’ in order to be able to say what distinguishes conscious occurrent thought from non-conscious occurrent thought.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Nature of Phenomenal Qualities
EditorsPaul Coates Sam Coleman
PublisherOxford University Press
Publication statusIn preparation - 2014


  • consciousness
  • thought
  • cognitive phenomenology
  • sensory pheomenology


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