Who is the controller of controlled processes?

In Ran R. Hassin, James S. Uleman & John A. Bargh (eds.), The New Unconscious. Oxford Series in Social Cognition and Social Neuroscience. Oxford University Press 19-36 (2005)
Are we the robots? This question surfaces often in current psychological re- search, as various kinds of robot parts-automatic actions, mental mechanisms, even neural circuits-keep appearing in our explanations of human behavior. Automatic processes seem responsible for a wide range of the things we do, a fact that may leave us feeling, if not fully robotic, at least a bit nonhuman. The complement of the automatic process in contemporary psychology, of course, is the controlled process (Atkinson & Shiffrin, 1968; Bargh, 1984; Posner & Snyder, 1975; Shiffrin & Schnieder, 1977), and it is in theories of controlled processes that vestiges of our humanity reappear. Controlled processes are viewed as conscious, effortful, and intentional. and as drawing on more sources of information than automatic processes. With this power of conscious will, controlled processes seem to bring the civilized quality back to psychological explanation that automatic processes leave out. Yet by reintroducing this touch of humanity, the notion of a controlled process also brings us within glimpsing range of a fatal theoretical error-the idea that there is a controller
Keywords *Cognitive Processes  *Internal External Locus of Control  *Personality Theory  *Unconscious (Personality Factor)  Automatism  Behavior  Self Perception  Volition
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Eddy Nahmias (2005). Agency, Authorship, and Illusion. Consciousness and Cognition 14 (4):771-785.

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