The Life of the Mind: Selected Papers

By Jason W. Brown | Go to book overview

7 Essay on Perception*

What is the world? How are we to conceive it? The problem is posed in our everyday experience. Presently, there is before me a wide river, trees and a great bridge that tapers into the distance. The scene has depth, movement, light and color. The clean smell of the water, the warmth of the sun, are part of my perception; there are sounds and voices around me. I am aware of a multitude of other things in the background, my discomfort on the bench where I am sitting, the pen in my hand, the image I am calling up. I am aware also that the perception is given to me all at once in its entirety. I have no sense that it is constructed out of elements. I seems whole and invulnerable. I shift my attention and the world remains fixed. It will be there again when I look away. It presents itself before me and I ingest it with my organs of sense. My body is an object that exists for the perception of others. And on the rim of this perception is an awareness of self. This self-awareness is bound up with an inner commentary. My concept of self as experienced is replete with this commentary, which seems to be the equivalent of mind in the context of this perception. But unlike mind, the perception is not experienced as in the mind or even through the mind but as something outside mind in a space which could be vacant if deprived of the objects with which it is so abundantly filled.

This seems a fair account of an everyday experience of such force and immediacy as to encumber any theory of mind that runs counter to its appeal. Yet every day we are reminded of the fragility of the world. We are dizzy and the world spins around us. We struggle to maintain our balance even as the world disintegrates. Object constancies and perceptual illusions remind us that we are thinking objects, not just seeing them. In the evening the object gives way to a dream imagery that may be more vivid than waking perception. We question the reality of dream only on waking as we regain the world of objects. Now the perception is stable and outside us. But how fixed and stable is this object? Even as we gaze at it we are aware that it is never perceived in the same way. It is noticed differently, it changes with our feelings and interest; the object itself changes in our perception. We ignore this instability to the degree to which the reconstruction is successful. Yet the fragility of the object helps us to recognize its basis in the mind, it helps us to recognize the continuum which exists from the image of the dream to the object in perception in the enlarging representation of a cognized world.

____________________
*
From Neuropsychology of Visual Perception, by J. Brown (Ed.). Copyright 1988 by Lawrence Erlbaum, Associates.

-252-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The Life of the Mind: Selected Papers
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page i
  • Contents iii
  • Preface v
  • Introduction: Microgenetic Theory 1
  • I - Language 27
  • 1 - Language Representation in the Brain 29
  • Notes 99
  • 3 - Thalamic Mechanisms in Language 100
  • 4 - Selections on Aphasia and Lateralization 121
  • II - Perception 171
  • 5 - Microstructure of Objects 173
  • 6 - Microstructure of Images 206
  • 7 - Essay on Perception 252
  • III - Action 275
  • 8 - Frontal Lobes and the Organization of Action 277
  • 9 - The Microstructure of Action 302
  • 10 - The Problem of Perseveration 322
  • IV - 2 333
  • 11 - Toward a Microgenetic Theory of Memory 335
  • 12 - Emergence and Time 357
  • References 372
  • Author Index 419
  • Subject Index 431
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 437

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.