The Meta-Problem of Consciousness

Event time: 
Tuesday, March 29, 2022 - 3:30pm to 4:30pm
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Event description: 

The hard problem of consciousness is the problem of explaining how physical systems give rise to subjective experience. The hard problem typically contrasts with the easy problems of explaining behavior. However, there is one behavior with an especially close tie to the hard problem: people sometimes make verbal reports such as “consciousness is puzzling” and “there is a hard problem of consciousness.” The meta-problem of consciousness is the problem of explaining these reports. The meta-problem is strictly speaking an easy problem, and solving it is a tractable empirical project for cognitive scientists. At the same time, a solution will almost certainly have consequences for the hard problem of consciousness. In this talk I will lay out the meta-problem research program, I will examine some recent experimental evidence, and I will evaluate some potential solutions.
David Chalmers is University Professor of Philosophy and Neural Science and codirector of the Center for Mind, Brain, and Consciousness at New York University. He is the author of The
Conscious Mind (1996), Constructing the World (2012), and Reality+: Virtual Worlds and the Problems of Philosophy (2022).
This is a hybrid event—in person in the Humanities Quadrangle; also live streamed via Zoom. To join the Zoom webinar please register.
3:30pm, 320 York Street, Room 136
Following Yale COVID policies, the event is open to Yale ID holders only. Masks are required.

David Chalmers, New York University