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Previous Contributors to the Great Debate

Susan Blackmore Susan Blackmore

Dr Susan Blackmore is a freelance writer, lecturer and broadcaster, and a Visiting Lecturer at the University of the West of England, Bristol. She has a degree in psychology and physiology from Oxford University (1973) and a PhD in parapsychology from the University of Surrey (1980). Her research interests include memes and the theory of memetics, evolutionary theory, consciousness, and meditation. She practices Zen. Sue Blackmore no longer works on the paranormal.

She writes for several magazines and newspapers, and is a frequent contributor and presenter on radio and television. She is author of over sixty academic articles, about forty book contributions and many book reviews. Her books include The Meme Machine (1999), Test Your Psychic Powers (with Adam Hart-Davis, 1997), In Search of the Light (autobiography, 1996), Dying to Live (on near-death experiences, 1993) and Beyond the Body (1982).

Her textbook Consciousness: An Introduction was published in June 2003.

Susan Blackmore was on the panel at The Great Debate: Genes, Memes, Minds in November 2004.

Susan Blackmore says:



Consciousness: An Introduction Consciousness: An Introduction by Susan Blackmore

Is there a theory that explains the essence of consciousness? Or is consciousness itself just an illusion? The "last great mystery of science", consciousness is a topic that was banned from serious research for most of the 20th century. It is now a rapidly expanding area of study for students of psychology, philosophy and neuroscience, capturing growing popular interest. This text brings together all the major theories of consciousness studies, from those based on neuroscience to those based on quantum theory or eastern philosophy, in a format specifically designed to support structured learning. The book examines topics that include: how subjective experiences arise from objective brain processes; the basic neuroscience and neuropathology of consciousness; altered states of consciousness; mystical experiences; and the effects of drugs, dreams and meditation. Also discussed are: the nature of self; the possibility of artificial consciousness in robots; and the question of whether animals are conscious. All topics are supported not only by self-assessment questions and extensive further reading suggestions at the end of each chapter, but by practical exercises that help bring the subject to life and that could radically transform each reader's understanding of his own consciousness.

Meme MachineThe Meme Machine by Susan Blackmore

Humans are extraordinary creatures, with the unique ability among animals to imitate and so copy from one another ideas, habits, skills, behaviours, inventions, songs, and stories. These are all memes, a term first coined by Richard Dawkins in 1976 in his book The Selfish Gene. Memes, like genes, are replicators, and this book is an investigation of whether this link between genes and memes can lead to important discoveries about the nature of the inner self. Confronting the deepest questions about our inner selves, with all our emotions, memories, beliefs, and decisions, Susan Blackmore makes a case for the theory that the inner self is merely an illusion created by the memes for the sake of replication.

Test Your Psychic PowersTest Your Psychic Powers by Susan Blackmore and Adam Hart-Davis

In Search of the LightIn Search of the Light by Susan Blackmore

Dying to LiveDying to Live by Susan Blackmore

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Useful Links books by Susan Blackmore

Susan Blackmore

Susan Blackmore's homepage on Memes Central

Meme Lab

Waking from the Meme Dream

The Meme and I

Evolution Library: Susan Blackmore: Memetic Evolution

Susan Blackmore's favourite books

The Meme Machine review by Liane Gabora

The Meme Machine review by Susan Stepney

The Meme Machine review by Matthew Elton (University of Stirling)

The Meme Machine review by Anthony Campbell

I Meme Mine Dr. Susan Blackmore in Conversation with R.U. Sirius

What is it to be human? Kenan Malik's debate with Susan Blackmore

Abduction by Aliens or Sleep Paralysis?

Who Is Susan Blackmore? by Robert E. McGrath

Dr. Susan Blackmore's research of near-death experiences

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