The primate visual brain consists of many separate, functionally specialized processing systems, each consisting of several apparently hierarchical stages or nodes. The evidence reviewed here leads me to speculate () that the processing systems are autonomous with respect to one another, () that activity at each node reaches a perceptual end point at a different time, resulting in a perceptual asynchrony in vision, and () that, consequently, activity at each node generates a microconsciousness. Visual consciousness is therefore distributed in space and time, with the universal organizing principle of abstraction applied separately within each processing system. The consequence of spatially and temporally distributed microconsciousnesses is that their integration is a multistage, nonhierarchical process that may involve a neural “glue.”


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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