Contrary to philosophical tradition, modern theorists of the mind have often downplayed the importance of consciousness. Instead, they have accounted for the mind in terms of phenomena like mechanisms, dispositions, abilities and even environmental features. One of many inspirations for this trend is a series of passages of the later Wittgenstein. These passages discuss a variety of specific mental phenomena, like searching, comparing, understanding and reading. The passages have often been taken them to show that one may exemplify any of the phenomena at issue without being in any particular type of conscious state. I claim that the passages do not support this conclusion, and that the conclusion is, arguably, false. My conclusion is that consciousness may be a more important aspect of the mind than is supposed by many contemporary theorists--both Wittgensteinians and others.
2005. no 16, 6-22 p.