Feeling Yourself
Philip Gerrans (University of Adelaide)

October 16, 2014, 11:15am - 12:15pm
Swiss Centre in the Affective Sciences, University of Geneva


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Thumos - the genevan research group on emotions, values and norms

Swiss National Center for Affective Sciences, University of Geneva

This Thursday at 4.15 p.m., Philip Gerrans (University of Adelaide) will present his paper "Feeling Yourself" (abstract below).

We will meet at the Swiss Centre for Affective Sciences, at the Campus Biotech (9, Chemin des Mines, 1202 Geneva; see directions and map below), in the small conference room. 

Please come at 4 p.m. at the main entrance, so that we can provide you with a badge to access the building. In case you have trouble finding us, please call me at 076/561.71.35.

Attendance is free. All welcome!

Best wishes,

Santiago, on behalf of Thumos



"Who is the I that knows the bodily me, who has an image of myself and a sense of identity over time, who knows that I have propriate strivings?” I know all these things, and what is more, I know that I know them. But who is it who has this perspectival grasp? It is much easier to feel the self than to define the self (Allport 1961, p. 128).

I think Allport has it the wrong way round. It is easy to define the self, as he in fact does, as the entity that thinks, feels, perceives and has a sense of identity over time. It is hard, however, to a find an entity that fits the definition. This is so even though, according to Allport, experiencing being a self is unproblematic (“it is easier to feel the self”). In fact, the experience of being someone is actually very elusive, phenomenologically and conceptually. I will argue that the precise nature of experiences reported as self-awareness is best inferred from those cases when it goes awry, in particular disorders involving the experience of depersonalisation (DPD). Predictive coding theory and the appraisal theory of emotion help us interpret the experience of DPD and explain the elusive nature of self awareness.

How to reach the Swiss Centre for Affective Sciences?

Access from the Cornavin train station

The closest tram/bus stops are called “France” (tram stop) and “Mines” (bus stop). There are two ways to come to the Center from the Cornavin train station.

1) Take bus 25  or 1 until the stop “Mines” (6th stop). The bus stops right in front of the main entrance.

2) Take tram 15  until the stop “France” (3rd stop), walk downhill for about 100 meters (2 minutes), towards the lake, then turn left on "Avenue Blanc". At the end of the street (about 300 meters), you will reach the main entrance of the building at 9 chemin des Mines.

See map on http://www.affective-sciences.org/contact

You can find more information about our weekly seminar and about Thumos on 

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