We are because of others. We are born into this world with minds as naked as our bodies and we have to rely on others to feed, clothe us, and to teach us to think of ourselves as selves. The key is language -- grammatical speech and human culture build upon the brain's biological capacities to create a mind that is something different again than that with which we are born. We are conscious because we can speak to others and ourselves, because we can speak of ourselves to others and ourselves. Language gives us as individuals, memory, and as groups, culture, the social memory. Or so thoughtLev SemyonovichVygotsky, among others. Welcome to the the neuronaut's guide to the science of consciousness.
posted by y2karl
on Jul 11, 2003 -
1337 h4X0r or idiot savant? USA Today quotes noted animal behaviorist Temple Grandin observing that uber-hacker Kevin Mitnick exhibits many of the symptoms of Asperger's syndrome, a mild form of autisim from which Grandin herself suffers. Mitnick doesn't seem to disagree, in fact he noticed it himself. Grandin, Mitnick and others speculate as to whether many "hackers" are, in fact, autistic.
posted by briank
on Mar 29, 2001 -