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December 1957

Les Mécanismes cérébraux de la prise de conscience

AMA Arch NeurPsych. 1957;78(6):666. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1957.02330420126025

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In examining the problem of human consciousness and insight, the author aims to integrate the neurophysiological orientation with the views of Pavlov and the psychoanalytic schools and to inflict a coup mortel à l'idéalisme dualiste. Special emphasis is placed on the chronaximetric studies of Lapicque and the metabolic origin of electrical properties of neurons. The concept is advanced that the characteristic excitatory properties of each neuron and the variations in these states of excitation modify the impulses acting upon the neurons so as to enhance and inhibit the incoming impulses. Furthermore, individual neurons, acting in concert with one another, have fluctuations in their chronaximetric status. On this basis there is elaborated Pavlov's concepts of the conditioning process through which the reactive patterns of the organism are developed. There is discussed the relative influence of genetic and experiential factors in patterning of behavior. The formulation is presented that in those animals,

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