When consciousness matters: A critical review of Daniel Wegner's the illusion of conscious will [Book Review]
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Philosophical Psychology 15 (4):527-541 (2002)
In The illusion of conscious will , Daniel Wegner offers an exciting, informative, and potentially threatening treatise on the psychology of action. I offer several interpretations of the thesis that conscious will is an illusion. The one Wegner seems to suggest is "modular epiphenomenalism": conscious experience of will is produced by a brain system distinct from the system that produces action; it interprets our behavior but does not, as it seems to us, cause it. I argue that the evidence Wegner presents to support this theory, though fascinating, is inconclusive and, in any case, he has not shown that conscious will does not play a crucial causal role in planning, forming intentions, etc. This theory's potential blow to our self-conception turns out to be a glancing one
|Keywords||Consciousness Illusion Science Will Wegner, D|
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References found in this work BETA
Michael Bratman (1987/1999). Intention, Plans, and Practical Reason. Center for the Study of Language and Information.
Benjamin W. Libet (1985). Unconscious Cerebral Initiative and the Role of Conscious Will in Voluntary Action. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 8 (4):529-66.
Daniel M. Wegner (1989). White Bears and Other Unwanted Thoughts: Suppression, Obsession, and the Psychology of Mental Control. Penguin.
Citations of this work BETA
Joshua Shepherd (2015). Conscious Action/Zombie Action. Noûs 48 (4):n/a-n/a.
Andrew E. Monroe & Bertram F. Malle (2010). From Uncaused Will to Conscious Choice: The Need to Study, Not Speculate About People’s Folk Concept of Free Will. Review of Philosophy and Psychology 1 (2):211-224.
Joshua Shepherd (2015). Scientific Challenges to Free Will and Moral Responsibility. Philosophy Compass 10 (3):197-207.
Sven Walter (2014). Willusionism, Epiphenomenalism, and the Feeling of Conscious Will. Synthese 191 (10):2215-2238.
Neil Levy (2009). Neuroethics: Ethics and the Sciences of the Mind. Philosophy Compass 4 (1):69-81.
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Gerben Meynen (2010). Wegner on Hallucinations, Inconsistency, and the Illusion of Free Will. Some Critical Remarks. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 9 (3):359-372.
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