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Trends Cogn Sci. 2005 Jun;9(6):290-5.

Conscious intention and motor cognition.

Author information

  • Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, University College London, 17 Queen Square, London WC1N 3AR, UK.

Abstract

The subjective experience of conscious intention is a key component of our mental life. Philosophers studying 'conscious free will' have discussed whether conscious intentions could cause actions, but modern neuroscience rejects this idea of mind-body causation. Instead, recent findings suggest that the conscious experience of intending to act arises from preparation for action in frontal and parietal brain areas. Intentional actions also involve a strong sense of agency, a sense of controlling events in the external world. Both intention and agency result from the brain processes for predictive motor control, not merely from retrospective inference.

PMID:
15925808
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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