DATE: Monday, October 28, 2013
TIME: 10:00 a.m
PLACE: Studio, Lambert Road campus
CANDIDATE: John Brendan Loghry
DISSERTATION TITLE: "The Recreation of Consciousness: Artificial Intelligence and Human Individuation"
PROGRAM-TRACK/YEAR: PhD-K; 2005
COORDINATOR: Dr. Matthew Green
ADVISOR: Dr. Susan Rowland
EXTERNAL READER: Dr. Luke Hockley
Loghry, J. (2013). The Recreation of Consciousness: Artificial Intelligence and Human Individuation (Doctoral dissertation, Pacifica Graduate Institute, 2013)
Starting from Edward Edinger’s portrayal of Jung’s process of individuation as the creation of consciousness, this dissertation asks in what ways the creation of artificial intelligence (AI) can be seen as the re-creation of consciousness, and specifically whether the AI’s maturation from non-consciousness to something equivalent to consciousness will have an analogous effect on humanity’s development out of unconsciousness toward a greater state of cognitive freedom. Taking a functional perspective, this dissertation asks whether B.F. Skinner’s metaphor of the human psyche as a black box, normally seen as expressing the belief that humans are mechanistic and determined, is in fact an attempt to insulate the most intimate of human experiences (the soul) from the intrusive gaze of the scientific mindset. Juxtaposing this black box metaphor with two other metaphors—that of Schrodinger’s cat and that of Pandora’s box—this dissertation asks whether the presence of an entirely constructed entity that displays all the signs of soul will cause the artificially intelligent entity to act as a mirror, reflecting humanity’s gaze past our inner defenses, to an inner absence where a metaphysical soul was once surmised to be. While such a change in self-image would initially entail a loss of meaning, this dissertation notes that such a lacuna of meaning is already growing in society and concludes that the loss of this concept would eventually result in a new concept of self that would represent an important milestone for the collective individuation of the species.Please note: All oral defense attendees must shuttle from the Best Western Hotel in Carpinteria.