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A multimodal conception of bodily awareness

Abstract : One way to characterize the special relation that one has to one's own body is to say that only one's body appears to one from the inside. Although widely accepted, the nature of this specific experiential mode of presentation of the body is rarely spelled out. Most definitions amount to little more than lists of the various body senses (including senses of posture, movement, heat, pressure, and balance). It is true that body senses provide a kind of informational access to one's own body, which one has to no other bodies, by contrast to external senses like vision, which can take many bodies as their object. But a theory of bodily awareness needs to take into account recent empirical evidence that indicates that bodily awareness is infected by a plague of multisensory effects, regardless of any dichotomy between body senses and external senses. Here I will argue in favour of a multimodal conception of bodily awareness. I will show that the body senses fail to fully account for the content of bodily experiences. I will then propose that vision helps compensate for the insufficiencies of the body senses in people who can see. I will finally argue that the multimodality of bodily experiences does not prevent privileged access to one's body.
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Contributor : Frédérique de Vignemont <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, October 30, 2013 - 8:02:28 PM
Last modification on : Friday, July 2, 2021 - 9:58:02 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Friday, January 31, 2014 - 9:36:06 AM


  • HAL Id : ijn_00878771, version 1



Frédérique de Vignemont. A multimodal conception of bodily awareness. Mind, Oxford University Press (OUP), 2014, pp.00-00. ⟨ijn_00878771⟩



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