The New Science of Consciousness

The New Science of Consciousness

Exploring the Complexity of Brain, Mind, and Self

Book - 2016
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Random House, Inc.
This book explains in layperson's terms a new approach to studying consciousness based on a partnership between neuroscientists and complexity scientists. The author, a physicist turned neuroscientist, outlines essential features of this partnership. The new science goes well beyond traditional cognitive science and simple neural networks, which are often the focus in artificial intelligence research. It involves many fields including neuroscience, artificial intelligence, physics, cognitive science, and psychiatry.

What causes autism, schizophrenia, and Alzheimer's disease? How does our unconscious influence our actions? As the author shows, these important questions can be viewed in a new light when neuroscientists and complexity scientists work together. This cross-disciplinary approach also offers fresh insights into the major unsolved challenge of our age: the origin of self-awareness. Do minds emerge from brains? Or is something more involved?

Using human social networks as a metaphor, the author explains how brain behavior can be compared with the collective behavior of large-scale global systems. Emergent global systems that interact and form relationships with lower levels of organization and the surrounding environment provide useful models for complex brain functions.

By blending lucid explanations with illuminating analogies, this book offers the general reader a window into the latest exciting developments in brain research.

Baker & Taylor
A physicist turned neuroscientist explains, in laypersonÆs terms, a new cross-disciplinary approach to studying consciousness based on a partnership between neuroscientists and complexity scientists that goes well beyond traditional cognitive science and simple neural networks.

Book News
In this book for general readers and students, brain research consultant Paul Nunez (biomedical engineering, Tulane University) uses a conversational style, a sense of humor, and b&w illustrations to explain the latest findings and speculations at the intersection of neuroscience and complexity science. The author draws on ideas from cognitive science and psychiatry, as well as perspectives from physics and neuroscience, in order to shed light on perennial questions related to the connection between the brain and the mind. While Nunez piques readers’ curiosity with discussion of zombie worlds and other thought experiments, he also provides scientific background on the structure and function of the brain, states of consciousness, and causes of diseases that impact the mind, such as Alzheimer’s disease and schizophrenia. Throughout the book, the author applies models and theories of networks to the workings of the brain. The book contains an extensive glossary, along with b&w photos, illustrations, and diagrams. Nunez has written four other general interest books on the brain, including the most recent title: Brain, Mind, and the Structure of Reality. Annotation ©2017 Ringgold, Inc., Portland, OR (

Publisher: Amherst, N.Y. : Prometheus Books, 2016
ISBN: 9781633882195
Branch Call Number: 612.8 NUN
Characteristics: 374 p. :,ill. ;,24 cm


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