What is human consciousness and does it emerge from some particular part of our brain? Do other animals experience consciousness and is there any proof for the evolution of consciousness. These are some of the most essential and important questions of our existence. Our guest tonight on Inquiry is Daniel Bor, a research fellow at the Sackler Center for Consciousness Science and the Department of Informatics at the University of Sussex. His new book The Ravenous Brain: How The New Science of Consciousness Explains Our Insatiable Search for Meaning is a dynamic and fascinating review of the latest scientific discoveries in the neurosciences and what it can tell us about our experience of who we are.
America’s trade relationship with China began right after the Revolutionary War. The Middle Kingdom did not trust foreigners and confined American and European ships to the port of Canton. American traders brought sea otter pelts; sealskins; sandalwood, běche de mer (sea cucumbers) to trade for Chinese tea, silks, spices, jade and porcelain. American and British ships also smuggled in opium, despite that fact that Chinese law prohibited trade in that drug. This would eventually lead to The Opium War, which would affect China’s attitudes to outside influences to this day. Tonight on Inquiry we talk with award-winning author Eric Jay Dolin about his exciting new history book, When America First Met China: An Exotic History of Tea, Drugs, and Money in the Age of Sail.