Behavioral and Brain Sciences



Open Peer Commentary
O'Brien & Opie: Connectionism and phenomenal experience

Consciousness should not mean, but be


Dan Lloyd a1
a1 Department of Philosophy, Trinity College, Hartford, CT 06106 dan.lloyd@trincoll.edu

Abstract

O'Brien & Opie's vehicle hypothesis is an attractive framework for the study of consciousness. To fully embrace the hypothesis, however, two of the authors' claims should be extended: first, since phenomenal content is entirely dependent on occurrent brain events and only contingently correlated with external events, it is no longer necessary to regard states of consciousness as representations. Second, the authors' insistence that only stable states of a neural network are conscious seems ad hoc.