Absent minds and absent agents: Attention-lapse induced alienation of agency

Consciousness and Cognition 18 (2):481-493 (2009)
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We report a novel task designed to elicit transient attention-lapse induced alienation of agency experiences in normal participants. When attention-related action slips occur during the task, participants reported substantially decreased self control as well as a high degree of perceived agency attributed to the errant hand. In addition, participants reported being surprised by, and annoyed with, the actions of the errant hand. We argue that ALIA experiences occur because of constraints imposed by the close and precise temporal relations between intention formation and a contrary action employed in this paradigm. We note similarities between ALIA experiences and anarchic hand sign and argue that, despite important differences, both ALIA experiences and AHS phenomenology reflect failures of executive control to intervene and cancel contrary affordance-driven habitual motor plans



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References found in this work

Categorization of action slips.Donald A. Norman - 1981 - Psychological Review 88 (1):1-15.
Conscious intention and motor cognition.Patrick Haggard - 2005 - Trends in Cognitive Sciences 9 (6):290-295.
Actions not as planned: The price of automatization.J. T. Reason - 1979 - In Geoffrey Underwood & Robin Stevens (eds.), Aspects of Consciousness. Academic Press. pp. 1--67.

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