The structure of the self
a theory of personal identity
In "Does Consciousness exist?", a brief article initially published independently in 1904, and then later reprinted as the first of the Essays in Radical Empiricism, James comes to the startling conclusion that consciousness does not exist. Many of his critics have interpreted this statement as a proof of the fact that James's psychology may best be described as a form of behaviorism which ultimately reduces all conscious activity to cerebral disturbances. Indeed, this view seems to be reinforced by James's contention in The Principles of Psychology that "… our entire feeling of spiritual activity, or what commonly passes by that name, is really a feeling of bodily activities whose exact nature is by most men overlooked." 1
Cobb-Stevens, R. (1974). The structure of the self: a theory of personal identity, in James and Husserl, Dordrecht, Springer, pp. 67-89.
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