Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, Ph.D.

I study people, technology, and the worlds they make

Julian Jaynes Society

Via idiolect, I found The Julian Jaynes Society, which is devoted to the work of (surprise) Julian Jaynes, a Princeton psychologist who wrote The Origins of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind.

I stumbled upon Origins my freshman year of college, and was sufficiently inspired to go up to Princeton to talk to him about his work. Looking back, it was rather ridiculous a thing to do, and it’s a testament to Jaynes’ generosity that he would take part of a Saturday morning to talk to an 18 year-old who cold-called him.

I’m not sure what to make of his ideas now; it would be interesting to go back to his book and if it seems as impressive. The book’s argument isn’t the kind that you can’t prove right or wrong, but maybe it would still be worth arguing with.

1 Comment

  1. peter "the sheriff" Yoon

    February 20, 2005 at 11:47 pm

    What should interest this rather sleepyheaded society of ours is that the bicamerality of Jeff Gannon’s brain, i.e., straight/gay, – the quintessence of Kinseyian philosophy – is simply an organic model of the duplicity concerning sexuality being observed by the rather inorganic administration currently ruling this great land of ours.
    TITLE: The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind by Julian James – Book Review
    BLOG NAME: Kevin Kneupper’s Blog
    DATE: 07/09/2006 11:34:52 PM

    The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind is a classic psychology book that poses an interesting, but in my view unlikely, theory that human consciousness is not a product of evolution. Instead, Jaynes believed that it was som…

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