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Rationality and Consciousness from a Genetic Perspective

Michel Weber
Balkan Journal of Philosophy, 2015, Vol. 7, Issue 1.


Rationality and consciousness are strictly correlated. If one evolves, the other necessarily changes accordingly. Of all the possible modes of inquiry, this paper adopts a process genetic perspective informed by the historical speculations of Julian Jaynes. First, we co-define consciousness and rationality. Second, we take up again Jaynes's insight: (proto-)consciousness has a history, or consciousness has a pre-history. Third, we underline that the sharpening of operational rationality has involved a palpable impoverishment of consciousness over the ages and nefarious consequences for our future.