Psychoanalysis Representation and Neuroscience: the Freudian unconscious and the Bayesian brain

In A. Fotopoulu, D. Pfaff & M. Conway (eds.), From the Couch to the Lab: Psychoanalysis, Neuroscience and Cognitive Psychology in Dialoge. Oxford University Press (2012)
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This paper argues that recent work in the 'free energy' program in neuroscience enables us better to understand both consciousness and the Freudian unconscious, including the role of the superego and the id. This work also accords with research in developmental psychology (particularly attachment theory) and with evolutionary considerations bearing on emotional conflict. This argument is carried forward in various ways in the work that follows, including 'Understanding and Healing', 'The Significance of Consilience', 'Psychoanalysis, Philosophical Issues', and 'Kantian Neuroscience and Radical Interpretation', and the discussion of conscious extends that of both 'The Problem of Consciousness and the Innerness of the Mind' and 'Psychoanalysis, Metaphor, and the Concept of Mind'.

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Jim Hopkins
University College London


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