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  1. Facundo M. Alonso (2014). What is Reliance? Canadian Journal of Philosophy 44 (2):163-183.
    In this article I attempt to provide a conceptual framework for thinking about reliance in a systematic way. I argue that reliance is a cognitive attitude that has a tighter connection to the guidance of our thought and action than ordinary belief does. My main thesis is that reliance has a ‘constitutive aim’: namely, it aims at guiding our thought and action in a way that is sensible from the standpoint of practical or theoretical ends. This helps explain why reliance (...)
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  2. Maria Alvarez (2010). Kinds of Reasons: An Essay in the Philosophy of Action. Oxford University Press.
    Understanding human beings and their distinctive rational and volitional capacities is one of the central tasks of philosophy. The task requires a clear account of such things as reasons, desires, emotions and motives, and of how they combine to produce and explain human behaviour. In Kinds of Reasons, Maria Alvarez offers a fresh and incisive treatment of these issues, focusing in particular on reasons as they feature in contexts of agency. Her account builds on some important recent work in the (...)
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  3. Maria Alvarez (2010). Kinds of Reasons: An Essay in the Philosophy of Action. OUP Oxford.
    Understanding human beings and their distinctive rational and volitional capacities is one of the central tasks of philosophy. The task requires a clear account of such things as reasons, desires, emotions and motives, and of how they combine to produce and explain human behaviour. In Kinds of Reasons, Maria Alvarez offers a fresh and incisive treatment of these issues, focusing in particular on reasons as they feature in contexts of agency. Her account builds on some important recent work in the (...)
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  4. Maria Alvarez (2009). Reasons, Desires and Intentional Actions. In Constantine Sandis (ed.), New Essays on the Explanation of Action. Palgrave Macmillan.
  5. Maria Alvarez (2005). Agents, Actions and Reasons. Philosophical Books 46 (1):45-58.
  6. C. Andreou (2005). Reasons and Purposes: Human Rationality and the Teleological Explanation of Action. Philosophical Review 114 (3):411-413.
  7. Robert Audi (1993). Action, Intention, and Reason. Cornell University Press.
    In this collection of essays, Audi develops a general theory of action ranging from the nature of action and action-explanation to free and rational action.
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  8. Robert Audi (1989). Practical Reasoning. Routledge.
    Practical Reasoning and Ethical Decision presents an account of practical reasoning as a process that can explain action, connect reasoning with intention, ...
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  9. Annette Baier (2009). Acting in Character. In Constantine Sandis (ed.), New Essays on the Explanation of Action. Palgrave Macmillan.
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  10. Kurt Baier (1965). Action and Agent. The Monist 49 (2):183-195.
  11. Lynne Rudder Baker (2002). Attitudes in Action: A Causal Account. Manuscrito 25 (3):47-78.
    This article aims to vindicate the commonsensical view that what we think affects what we do. In order to show that mental properties like believing, desiring and intending are causally explanatory, I propose a nonreductive, materialistic account that identifies beliefs and desires by their content, and that shows how differences in the contents of beliefs and desires can make causal differences in what we do.
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  12. Henk Bij de Weg, Reason and the Structure of Davidson's "Desire-Belief Model&Quot;.
    Abstract of “Reason and the structure of Davidson’s ‘Desire-Belief-Model’ ” by Henk bij de Weg -/- In the present discussion in the analytic theory of action, broadly two models for the explanation or justification of actions can be distinguished: the internalist and the externalist model. Against this background, I discuss Davidson’s version of the internalist Desire-Belief Model (DBM). First, I show that what Davidson calls “pro attitude” (a main element of his concept of reason) has two distinct meanings. An implication (...)
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  13. Susanne Bobzien (1999). Chrysippus' Theory of Causes. In Katerina Ierodiakonou (ed.), Topics in Stoic Philosophy. Oxford University Press.
    ABSTRACT: A systematic reconstruction of Chrysippus’ theory of causes, grounded on the Stoic tenets that causes are bodies, that they are relative, and that all causation can ultimately be traced back to the one ‘active principle’ which pervades all things. I argue that Chrysippus neither developed a finished taxonomy of causes, nor intended to do so, and that he did not have a set of technical terms for mutually exclusive classes of causes. Rather, the various adjectives which he used for (...)
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  14. Michael E. Bratman (2006). What is the Accordion Effect? Journal of Ethics 10 (1-2):5 - 19.
    In "Action and Responsibility,'' Joel Feinberg pointed to an important idea to which he gave the label "the accordion effect.'' Feinberg's discussion of this idea is of interest on its own, but it is also of interest because of its interaction with his critique, in his "Causing Voluntary Actions,'' of a much discussed view of H. L. A. Hart and A. M. Honoré that Feinberg labels the "voluntary intervention principle.'' In this essay I reflect on what the accordion effect is (...)
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  15. Jason Bridges, Niko Kolodny & Wai-Hung Wong (eds.) (2012). The Possibility of Philosophical Understanding: Reflections on the Thought of Barry Stroud. OUP USA.
    Barry Stroud's work has had a profound impact on a very wide array of philosophical topics, including epistemological skepticism, the nature of logical necessity, the interpretation of Hume, the interpretation of Wittgenstein, the possibility of transcendental arguments, and the metaphysical status of color and value. And yet there has heretofore been no book-length treatment of his work. The current collection aims to redress this gap, with 13 essays on Stroud's work by a diverse group of contributors including some of his (...)
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  16. Andrei A. Buckareff & Jing Zhu (2009). The Primacy of the Mental in the Explanation of Human Action. The Primacy of the Mental in the Explanation of Human Action 3 (26):1 - 16.
    The mentalistic orthodoxy about reason-explanations of action in the philosophy of mind has recently come under renewed attack. Julia Tanney is among those who have critiqued mentalism. The alternative account of the folk practice of giving reason-explanations of actions she has provided affords features of an agent�s external environment a privileged role in explaining the intentional behaviour of agents. The authors defend the mentalistic orthodoxy from Tanney�s criticisms, arguing that Tanney fails to provide a philosophically satisfying or psychologically realistic account (...)
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  17. Andrei A. Buckareff & Jing Zhu (2004). Causalisms Reconsidered. Dialogue 43 (01):147-.
    We reply to Andrew Sneddon’s recent criticism of the causal theory of action (CTA) and critically examine Sneddon’s preferred alternative, minimal causalism. We show that Sneddon’s criticism of CTA is problematic in several respects, and therefore his conclusion that “the prospects for CTA look poor” is unjustified. Moreover, we show that the minimal causalism that Sneddon advocates looks rather unpromising and its merits that Sneddon mentions are untenable.
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  18. Jakub Čapek (2008). Explanation and Understanding: Action as “Historical Structure”. Philosophia 36 (4):453-463.
    The first part of this essay is basically historical. It introduces the explanation–understanding divide, focusing in particular on the general–unique distinction. The second part is more philosophical and it presents two different claims on action. In the first place, I will try to say what it means to understand an action. Secondly, we will focus on the explanation of action as it is seen in some explanatory sciences. I will try to argue that in some cases these sciences commit what (...)
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  19. John Ross Churchill (2004). Reasons Explanation and Agent Control. Philosophical Topics 32 (1/2):241-253.
  20. Scott D. Churchill (1991). Reasons, Causes, and Motives: Psychology's Illusive Explanations of Behavior. Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 11 (1):24-34.
  21. Sean Crawford (2012). De Re and De Dicto Explanation of Action. Philosophia 40 (4):783-798.
    This paper argues for an account of the relation between thought ascription and the explanation of action according to which de re ascriptions and de dicto ascriptions of thought each form the basis for two different kinds of action explanations, nonrationalizing and rationalizing ones. The claim that de dicto ascriptions explain action is familiar and virtually beyond dispute; the claim that that de re ascriptions are explanatory of action, however, is not at all familiar and indeed has mostly been denied (...)
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  22. Terence Cuneo (2011). A Puzzle Regarding Reid's Theory of Motives. British Journal for the History of Philosophy 19 (5):963-981.
    In Essays on the Active Powers, Thomas Reid offers two different accounts of motives. According to the first, motives are the ends for which we act. According to the second, they are mental states, such as desires, that incite us to action. These two accounts, I claim, do not fit comfortably with Reid's agent causal account of human action. My project in this article is to explain why and then to propose a strategy for reconciling these two accounts with Reid's (...)
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  23. Giuseppina D'Oro (2011). Davidson and the Autonomy of the Human Sciences. In Jeff Malpas (ed.), Dialogues with Davidson: New Perspectives on his Philosophy. MIT.
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  24. Giuseppina D'Oro & Constantine Sandis (eds.) (2013). Reasons and Causes: Causalism and Non-Causalism in the Philosophy of Action. Palgrave Macmillan.
    To mark the 50th anniversary of Donald Davidson's 'Actions, reasons and causes', eight philosophers with distinctive and contrasting views revisit and update the reasons/causes debate.Their essays are preceded by a historical introduction which traces current debates to their roots in the philosophy of history and social science, linking the rise of causalism to a metaphysical backlash against the linguistic turn. Both historically grounded and topical, this volume will be of great interest to both students and scholars in the philosophy of (...)
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  25. Stephen Darwall (2003). Review: Desires, Reasons, and Causes. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 67 (2):436 - 443.
  26. Lawrence H. Davis (1979). Theory of Action. Prentice Hall.
  27. Sabine A. Döring (2003). Explaining Action by Emotion. Philosophical Quarterly 53 (211):214-230.
    I discuss two ways in which emotions explain actions: in the first, the explanation is expressive; in the second, the action is not only explained but also rationalized by the emotion's intentional content. The belief-desire model cannot satisfactorily account for either of these cases. My main purpose is to show that the emotions constitute an irreducible category in the explanation of action, to be understood by analogy with perception. Emotions are affective perceptions. Their affect gives them motivational force, and they (...)
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  28. Stephen Everson (2009). What Are Reasons for Action? In Constantine Sandis (ed.), New Essays on the Explanation of Action. Palgrave Macmillan. 22--47.
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  29. Richard H. Feldman & Andrei A. Buckareff (2003). Reasons Explanations and Pure Agency. Philosophical Studies 112 (2):135-145.
    We focus on the recent non-causal theory of reasons explanationsof free action proffered by a proponent of the agency theory, Timothy O'Connor. We argue that the conditions O'Connor offersare neither necessary nor sufficient for a person to act for a reason. Finally, we note that the role O'Connor assigns toreasons in the etiology of actions results in further conceptual difficulties for agent-causalism.
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  30. John Ferejohn (2002). Symposium on Explanations and Social Ontology 1: Rational Choice Theory and Social Explanation. Economics and Philosophy 18 (2):211-234.
    In the Common Mind, Pettit argues that rational choice theory cannot provide genuine causal accounts of action. A genuine causal explanation of intentional action must track how people actually deliberate to arrive at action. And, deliberation is necessarily enculturated or situated “. . . we take human agents to reason their way to action, using the concepts that are available to them in the currency of their culture” (p. 220). When deciding how to act, “. . . people find their (...)
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  31. Iskra Fileva (forthcoming). A Puzzle About Knowledge in Action. Logique Et Analyse 56 (223):287-301.
    I question the widespread assumption that when we act for reasons we know what our reasons are. I argue that an agent may act in ignorance, or partial ignorance, regarding his or her reasons, and an action involving ignorance of this sort may still qualify as done for reasons. I conclude from here that we need to develop a suitable new model of action for reasons, and I proceed to offer such a model. Briefly, I argue that an action qualifies (...)
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  32. Iskra Fileva (2009). Kieran Setiya, Reasons Without Rationalism. Journal of Value Inquiry 43 (4):521-530.
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  33. Danny Frederick (2013). Popper, Rationality and the Possibility of Social Science. Theoria 28 (1):61-75.
    Social science employs teleological explanations which depend upon the rationality principle, according to which people exhibit instrumental rationality. Popper points out that people also exhibit critical rationality, the tendency to stand back from, and to question or criticise, their views. I explain how our critical rationality impugns the explanatory value of the rationality principle and thereby threatens the very possibility of social science. I discuss the relationship between instrumental and critical rationality and show how we can reconcile our critical rationality (...)
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  34. Danny Frederick (2012). Critique of an Argument for the Reality of Purpose. Prolegomena 11 (1):25-34.
    Schueler has argued, against the eliminativist, that human purposive action cannot be an illusion because the concept of purpose is not theoretical. He argues that the concept is known directly to be instantiated, through self-awareness; and that to maintain that the concept is theoretical involves an infinite regress. I show that Schueler’s argument fails because all our concepts are theoretical in the sense that we may be mistaken in applying them to our experience. As a consequence, it is conceivable that (...)
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  35. Carl Ginet (2008). In Defense of a Non-Causal Account of Reasons Explanations. Journal of Ethics 12 (3/4):229 - 237.
    This paper defends my claim in earlier work that certain non-causal conditions are sufficient for the truth of some reasons explanations of actions, against the critique of this claim given by Randolph Clarke in his book, Libertarian Accounts of Free Will.
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  36. Carl Ginet (1995). Reason's Explanation of Action. In Timothy O'Connor (ed.), Agents, Causes, and Events: Essays on Indeterminism and Free Will. Oxford University Press.
  37. Peter Gl (1977). Ii. The Rationality Principle and Action Explanations: Koertge's Reconstruction of Popper's Logic of Action Explanations. Inquiry 20 (1-4):72 – 81.
    Reconstructing Popper's research programme for the Human Sciences, Noretta Koertge (Inquiry , Vol. 18 [1975]) has given a deductive-nomological account of explanations of actions by means of a Rationality Principle. It is argued here that such a Rationality Principle is fundamentally redundant. Neither is it logically necessary in order to deduce a cognitive action-explanandum, nor can it be given a semantic non-empty interpretation, at least not within Koertge's own syllogism. Any attempt to save the Rationality Principle as unfalsifiablc but nevertheless (...)
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  38. Stuart Goetz (2004). Book Reveiw: Motivation and Agency by Alfred Mele. [REVIEW] Journal of Ethics 8 (2):197-200.
  39. Robert M. Gordon (2001). Simulation and Reason Explanation: The Radical View. Philosophical Topics 29 (1-2):175-192.
    Alvin Goldman's early work in action theory and theory of knowledge was a major influence on my own thinking and writing about emotions. For that reason and others, it was a very happy moment in my professional life when I learned, in 1988, that in his presidential address to the Society for Philosophy and Psychology Goldman endorsed and defended the “simulation” theory I had put forward in a 1986 article. I discovered afterward that we share a strong conviction that empirical (...)
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  40. Robert M. Gordon (2000). Simulation and the Explanation of Action. In K. R. Stueber & H. H. Kogaler (eds.), Empathy and Agency: The Problem of Understanding in the Human Sciences. Boulder: Westview Press.
  41. Robert M. Gordon, Reason Explanations and Counterfactuals.
    In evaluating conditionals concerning what a person would have done in counterfactual circumstances, we suppose the counterfactual antecedent to be true, just as in what I loosely term the standard "Ramsey" procedure; but then we follow a different path--a simulative path--in evaluating the consequent. The simulative path imposes an implicit restriction on possible worlds, a procedural guarantee that the individual simulated is aware of or knows about the counterfactual condition. This difference makes clear the way in which reason explanations are (...)
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  42. Till Grüne-yanoff (2008). Action Explanations Are Not Inherently Normative. Theoria 74 (1):60-78.
    "Though this be madness, yet there is method in't." Hamlet , act II, scene ii Abstract: Inherent normativity is the claim that intentional action explanations necessarily have to comply with normatively understood rationality constraints on the ascribed propositional attitudes. This paper argues against inherent normativity in three steps. First, it presents three examples of actions successfully explained with propositional attitudes, where the ascribed attitudes violate relevant rationality constraints. Second, it argues that the inference rules that systematise propositional attitudes are qualitatively (...)
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  43. Allan Hazlett (2012). Reasons for Action. Edited by David Sobel and Steven Wall. (Cambridge UP, 2009. Pp. 288. Price £53 (Hardcover), £21.99 (Paperback).). [REVIEW] Philosophical Quarterly 62 (247):413-415.
  44. Pamela Hieronymi (2011). Reasons for Action. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 111 (3pt3):407-427.
    Donald Davidson opens ‘Actions, Reasons, and Causes’ by asking, ‘What is the relation between a reason and an action when the reason explains the action by giving the agent's reason for doing what he did?’ His answer has generated some confusion about reasons for action and made for some difficulty in understanding the place for the agent's own reasons for acting, in the explanation of an action. I offer here a different account of the explanation of action, one that, though (...)
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  45. Pamela Hieronymi (2009). The Will as Reason. Philosophical Perspectives 23 (1):201-220.
    I here defend an account of the will as practical reason—or, using Kant's phrase, as "reason in its practical employment"—as against a view of the will as a capacity for choice, in addition to reason, by which we execute practical judgments in action. Certain commonplaces show distance between judgment and action and thus seem to reveal the need for a capacity, in addition to reason, by which we execute judgment in action. However, another ordinary fact pushes in the other direction: (...)
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  46. David R. Hilbert, Content, Intention, and Explanation.
    Naturalistic theories of content and whether or not reason-giving explanations of human behavior are causal explanations have been central topics in recent philosophy of mind. Fred Dretske, in his book Explaining Behavior, attempts to construct a naturalistic theory of the contents of beliefs and desires that gives these mental states an important role in the causation of behavior. Even if Dretske is granted that the theory adequately accounts for individual behaviors the theory still faces problems in offering an adequate account (...)
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  47. Christoph Hoerl (2002). Reply to Jean Decety: Perceiving Actions and Understanding Agency. In Jerome Dokic & Joelle Proust (eds.), Simulation and Knowledge of Action. John Benjamins. 45--73.
    Decety presents evidence for the claim that neural mechanisms involved in the generation of actions are also recruited in the observation and mental simulation of actions. This paper explores the relationship between such neuropsychological findings and our common-sense understanding of what it is for a person to imitate or imagine performing an action they have observed. A central question is whether imitation and imagination necessarily involve the ability to distinguish between one's own actions and those of others. It is argued (...)
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  48. D. Lynn Holt (1988). Teleological Explanation: A Species of Causal Explanation. Philosophical Psychology 1 (3):313-325.
    Abstract The thesis that teleological explanations are best understood as causal explanations is defended (contra Valentine). I shift the focus of debate from behavior simpliciter to allegedly rational behavior. Teleological explanation, in the case of rational agents, involves reason?giving; and the reasons agents give for acting must be causative of that action if those agents are to be rational in practice. I argue initially that to abandon the claim that reasons are causes of action is to abandon that which renders (...)
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  49. Rosalind Hursthouse (1991). Arational Actions. Journal of Philosophy 88 (2):57-68.
    According to the standard account of actions and their explanations, intentional actions are actions done because the agent has a certain desire/belief pair that explains the action by rationalizing it. Any explanation of intentional action in terms of an appetite or occurrent emotion (which might appear to be an explanation solely in terms of desire) is hence assumed to be elliptical, implicitly appealing to some appropriate belief. In this paper, I challenge this assumption with respect to the "arational" actions of (...)
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  50. Annemarie Kalis (2011). Failures of Agency: Irrational Behavior and Self-Understanding. Lexington Books.
    This book explores classic philosophical questions regarding the phenomenon of weakness of will or ‘akrasia’: doing A, even though all things considered, you judge it best to do B. Does this phenomenon really exist and if so, how should it be explained? Nacht van Descartes -/- The author provides a historical overview of some traditional answers to these questions and addresses the main question: how does the phenomenon of 'going against your own judgment' relate to the idea that we are (...)
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