© 2012

Natural Fabrications

Science, Emergence and Consciousness


Part of the The Frontiers Collection book series (FRONTCOLL)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-viii
  2. William Seager
    Pages 1-5
  3. The Scientific Picture of the World

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 7-7
    2. William Seager
      Pages 9-24
    3. William Seager
      Pages 25-36
    4. William Seager
      Pages 37-61
  4. Emergence and Consciousness

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 63-63
    2. William Seager
      Pages 65-83
    3. William Seager
      Pages 85-119
    4. William Seager
      Pages 121-154
    5. William Seager
      Pages 155-174
    6. William Seager
      Pages 175-188
    7. William Seager
      Pages 189-210
  5. Back Matter
    Pages 211-262

About this book


The spectacular success of the scientific enterprise over the last four hundred years has led to the promise of an all encompassing vision of the natural world. In this elegant picture, everything we observe is based upon just a few fundamental processes and entities. The almost infinite variety and complexity of the world is thus the product of emergence. But the concept of emergence is fraught with controversy and confusion. This book ponders the question of how emergence should be understood within the scientific picture, and whether a complete vision of the world can be attained that includes consciousness.


Cellular Automata Consciousness Scenarios Emergence of a Classical World Mental Causation Ontological Emergence Reductionism and Antireductionism Top-Down Causality Weak vs. Strong Emergence “The Hard Pproblem” of Consciousness

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1., Department of PhilosophyUniversity of Toronto ScarboroughScarboroughCanada

About the authors

William Seager is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Toronto Scarborough. He has written extensively on the problem of consciousness and its relation to the physical world. His publications include the books “Metaphysics of Consciousness” and “Theories of Consciousness”, many journal articles, book chapters and reviews.

Bibliographic information

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