What Feeling Is the "Feeling of Knowing"?

Mangan, Dr Bruce B. (2000) What Feeling Is the "Feeling of Knowing"? [Journal (Paginated)]

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Having a word on the tip of our tongue is a mundane and slightly annoying experi- ence. And yet, as Brown’s article helps us see, the theoretical implications of a TOT experience range very widely. The study of TOTs may also turn out to be useful for larger methodological reasons. Here, too, Brown recognizes that the investigation of TOTs offers an especially good example of convergent cognitive analysis, a way to combine phenomenology (e.g., James’s treatment of the fringe) with more objective methods of scientific investigation such as experimental psychology and computer modeling. For what it is worth, I am in complete agreement with Brown’s general approach to the TOT experience. And we also agree on various specific points, though in some cases Brown does not see this. Unfortunately, Brown at times attributes to me views that I simply do not hold; for example, that I take the feeling of knowing to be necessarily veridical or that the feeling of knowing demands a search of all relevant nonconscious information. I want to keep my comments directed toward issues that are of larger importance for the study of consciousness and the fringe and not fuss about our misunderstandings unless they have wider cognitive implications. For this reason I focus on Brown’s discussion in his ‘‘Current Research’’ section and the phenomenology most relevant to it. I believe the chief difficulty with Brown’s article is that it does not address James’s treatment of the feeling of knowing as it operates in a TOT state. This oversight undercuts a good deal of Brown’s specific analysis and helps contribute to his misun- derstanding of my own proposals regarding the role of the fringe in retrieval, monitor- ing, and control and why, as a matter of phenomenology, the feeling of knowing rightly understood is simply another term for the experience of rightness (Mangan, 1991, 1993a, 1993b).

Item Type:Journal (Paginated)
Keywords:Aesthetics, Feeling of Knowing, Fringe, Rightness, Structure of Consciousness, William James
Subjects:Psychology > Cognitive Psychology
ID Code:7586
Deposited By: Mangan, Dr. Bruce B.
Deposited On:30 Aug 2011 04:22
Last Modified:30 Aug 2011 04:22


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