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About the Society

The Julian Jaynes Society is a scholarly society and publisher focused on exploring Julian Jaynes's theory of the origin of consciousness and the bicameral mind as well as the many topics related to the theory.

The primary goals of the Julian Jaynes Society are to foster discussion and a better understanding of the life, work, and theories of Julian Jaynes (1920-1997), the implications of his theory of consciousness and the bicameral mind, the topic of consciousness in general, and the relevance of auditory hallucinations to the human experience.

The society was formed in 1997 shortly after the death of Julian Jaynes, with the initial goals of bringing together those interested in his ideas and locating Jaynes's unpublished writings. Over the past decade, the Julian Jaynes Society has grown tremendously and now helps promote Julian Jaynes's theory in a variety of ways, including:

  • Publishing books and articles (both print and electronic) relevant to the topic of consciousness and the bicameral mind theory.
  • Publishing a newsletter, The Jaynesian, with relevant essays, book reviews, and announcements.
  • Publishing audio CDs of lectures by Julian Jaynes as well as others discussing his theory.
  • Organizing (with Rabbi James Cohn) the 2013 The Julian Jaynes Society Conference on Consciousness and Bicameral Studies, the largest conference ever held on Julian Jaynes's theory.
  • Maintaining a Member's Area with hard to find articles, e-books, conference videos, audio lectures, book reviews, member essays, and more.
  • Organizing Jaynes-related speaker sessions and workshops at consciousness conferences, such as the Toward a Science of Consciousness Conference in Tucson, Arizona in 2008.
  • Helping to promote the Julian Jaynes Conference on Consciousness organized by Prof. Scott Greer at the University of Prince Edward Island in 2006 and 2008.
  • Reviewing drafts of articles and manuscripts on Jaynes's theory for authors to help ensure their accuracy.
  • Maintaining a public Discussion Forum.

About the Executive Director

Marcel Kuijsten

Marcel Kuijsten is Founder and Executive Director of the Julian Jaynes Society.

He is editor of three books on Jaynes's theory: Gods, Voices, and the Bicameral Mind: The Theories of Julian Jaynes, The Julian Jaynes Collection, and Reflections on the Dawn of Consciousness: Julian Jaynes's Bicameral Mind Theory Revisited. He is co-editor (with Brian McVeigh) of and regular contributor to The Jaynesian, the newsletter of the Julian Jaynes Society. He co-chaired (with Rabbi James Cohn) the 2013 Julian Jaynes Society Conference on Consciousness and Bicameral Studies, and has also spoken on Jaynes's theory at the Julian Jaynes Conference on Consciousness in Prince Edward Island and Toward A Science of Consciousness conference in Tucson, AZ. Interviews with Marcel Kuijsten have appeared on Red Ice Radio, the Evolution: This View of Life website, Astraea Magazine & Web Radio, Blood Rites by Jimmy Lee Shreeve and New Therapist magazine (Vol. 32, July/Aug. 2004). He earned Bachelors degrees in both Psychology and English and an MBA, and spent a summer as an intern in the Engineering Department at Princeton University. He is a certified in hypnosis by the American Academy of Hypnosis.

Academic Advisors

Michael Carr

Michael Carr, Ph.D. (Sinology)
Otaru University of Commerce, Japan (retired)
Michael Carr retired from teaching at Otaru University of Commerce in Japan and works as a freelance translator in Hawaii. He has published extensively on Chinese and Japanese linguistics and lexicography, including the New Japanese-English Character Dictionary. He has also published a series of articles on the evidence for bicameralism in ancient China. His article "The Shi 'Corpse/Personator' Ceremony in Early China" appears in Reflections on the Dawn of Consciousness.

Scott Greer

Scott Greer, Ph.D. (Psychology)
Department of Psychology, University of Prince Edward Island
Scott Greer is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychology at the University of Prince Edward Island. He is also Editor for the Canadian Psychological Association journal, the and Philosophy of Psychology Bulletin, and is coordinator for the Julian Jaynes Conference on Consciousness. Dr. Greer has published over a dozen articles on the history and theory of psychology, with particular emphasis on the history of self research and psychoanalysis. He has published two articles on Jaynes's theory: "A Knowing Noos and a Slippery Psyche" (in Reflections on the Dawn of Consciousness) and "The Last Modern Psychologist: Julian Jaynes' Search for Consciousness in the Natural World" (in the Journal of Cognition and Neuroethics). He organized the Julian Jaynes Conference of Consciousness in 2006 and 2008 and spoke on Jaynes's theory at the Toward A Science of Consciousness Conference in 2008.

John Hainly

John Hainly, M.A. (Philosophy)
Department of English & Philosophy, Southern University
John Hainly is Instructor of Philosophy at Southern University. He specialized in Philosophy of History and is interested in Philosophy of Religion, Culture, Science & Technology, as well as Psychology of Religion. He has spoken on Jaynes's theory at the 2013 Julian Jaynes Society Conference on Consciousness and Bicameral Studies, the Julian Jaynes Conference on Consciousness in 2008, and the Toward A Science of Consciousness Conference in 2008.

Brian J. McVeigh

Brian J. McVeigh, Ph.D. (Anthropology)
Department of East Asian Studies, University of Arizona
Brian J. McVeigh studied Asian Studies and Political Science at the State University of New York at Albany, from where he received his Master's degree. He received his Ph.D. in anthropology from Princeton University and was a student of Julian Jaynes. A psychological anthropologist and specialist on Japanese culture, he lived and worked in Asia for almost 17 years. He is the author of eleven books and is now training in mental health counseling. He has published numerous articles on Julian Jaynes and his theory, including "Elephants in the Psychology Department" (in Gods, Voices, and the Bicameral Mind), "Humility as a Profession: A Memorial to Julian Jaynes" (in The Julian Jaynes Collection), and "The Self as Interiorized Social Relations" (in Reflections on the Dawn of Consciousness). He has spoken on Jaynes's theory at the 2013 Julian Jaynes Society Conference on Consciousness and Bicameral Studies, the Julian Jaynes Conference on Consciousness in 2006 and 2008, and the Toward A Science of Consciousness Conference in 2008, 2010, and 2012. In 2016 he published two books related to Jaynes's theory: A Psychohistory of Metaphors: Envisioning Time, Space, and Self through the Centuries and How Religion Evolved: Explaining the Living Dead, Talking Idols, and Mesmerizing Monuments.

Jan Sleutels

Jan Sleutels, Ph.D. (Philosophy)
Department Philosophy, Leiden University, Netherlands
Jan Sleutels is Professor of Philosophy at Leiden University. His teaching and research interests include metaphysics, philosophy of mind, and media philosophy. His article "Greek Zombies" appears in Reflections on the Dawn of Consciousness, and he has spoken on Jaynes's theory at the 2013 Julian Jaynes Society Conference on Consciousness and Bicameral Studies, Julian Jaynes Conference on Consciousness in 2006, and the Toward A Science of Consciousness Conference in 2008 and 2009.