Essay: Research on consciousness and epiphenomenalism
Another reputed writer and researcher on the issue of consciousness and epiphenomenalism is Mr. Owen Flanagan. He discussed this issue in his work titled ‘Conscious Inessentialism and the Ephiphenominalist Suspicion’.
In it he stated that it is not essential for consciousness to exist as it is possible for human beings to be able to carry out their cognitive process and operations both consciously as well as without consciousness. This is justified when a person goes into coma and does not make use of his/her consciousness however he is able to retain the images and memories of his time spent in the comatose state. Another justification that can be derived from Flanagan’s works is that cognitive thinking and intellectual activities can be performed by a well programmed artificial system or a robot as well. However as the Robot does not have the element of consciousness, the fact relevant to tying consciousness along with the cognitive processes as being essential is questioned by Flanagan.
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