About this topic
Summary What are the relationships between action and knowledge, between doing something and knowing what one is doing? What is special about the first-person perspective on one's actions, and about the way we know our actions as opposed to other things? Do we (always, or often, or normally) know our intentional actions "without observation", and if so then what does this mean, and how is it possible?
Key works Anscombe 1957, which introduces the concept of "non-observational knowledge" as a mark of intentional action, is the seminal text in the 20th-century Anglophone literature on this subject. For an important early criticism of Anscombe's argument, see Donnellan 1963. More recently, Anscombean positions have been explored by Falvey 2000, Gibbons 2010, Grunbaum 2009, Grünbaum 2011, Hursthouse 2000, Moran 2004, Paul 2009, Pickard 2004, Rödl 2007, Schwenkler 2011, Schwenkler 2012, Setiya 2008, Velleman 1989, and in many of the essays collected in Roessler & Eilan 2003 and Ford et al 2011.
Introductions For an opinionated survey of the recent literature on this topic, see Schwenkler 2012.
  Show all references
Related categories
Siblings:See also:
83 found
Search inside:
(import / add options)   Sort by:
1 — 50 / 83
  1. G. E. M. Anscombe (1957/2000). Intention. Harvard University Press.
    This is a welcome reprint of a book that continues to grow in importance.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (5 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  2. Jan M. Broersen (2011). Making a Start with the Stit Logic Analysis of Intentional Action. Journal of Philosophical Logic 40 (4):499-530.
    This paper studies intentional action in stit logic. The formal logic study of intentional action appears to be new, since most logical studies of intention concern intention as a static mental state. In the formalization we distinguish three modes of acting: the objective level concerning the choices an agent objectively exercises, the subjective level concerning the choices an agent knows or believes to be exercising, and finally, the intentional level concerning the choices an agent intentionally exercises. Several axioms constraining the (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (7 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  3. Fernando Broncano (2006). Consideraciones epistemológicas acerca del “sentido de agencia”. Epistemological Requirements of the Sense of Agency. Logos. Anales Del Seminario de Metafísica 39:7-27.
    We discuss the conditions that the knowledge of an action must meet to reach the status of agency or complete intentional action. A first problem is to account how the subject appears in the action. We consider the model of a "sense of agency" and we oppose a theory of action control that does not take in charge the epistemological problems associated to the sense of agency model. Our claim is that epistemological requirements are intrinsic components of the agency, and (...)
    Remove from this list |
    Translate to English
    | Direct download (7 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  4. Peter Carruthers (2011). Action-Awareness and the Active Mind. Philosophical Papers 38 (2):133-156.
    In a pair of recent papers and his new book, Christopher Peacocke (2007, 2008a, 2008b) takes up and defends the claim that our awareness of our own actions is immediate and not perceptually based, and extends it into the domain of mental action.1 He aims to provide an account of action-awareness that will generalize to explain how we have immediate awareness of our own judgments, decisions, imaginings, and so forth. These claims form an important component in a much larger philosophical (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (8 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  5. David Cunning (1999). Agency and Consciousness. Synthese 120 (2):271-294.
    In Intentionality and other works, John Searle establishes himself as a leading defender of the view that consciousness of what one is doing is always a component of one'€™s action. In this paper I focus on problems with Searle'€™s view to establish that there are actions in which the agent is not at all aware of what she is doing. I argue that any theory that misses this sort of action keeps us from important insights into autonomy, self-knowledge and responsibility.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (9 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  6. Arthur Coleman Danto (1973). Analytical Philosophy of Action. Cambridge, [Eng.]University Press.
    He is always prepared to venture novel ideas to stimulate further debate and research and the book as a whole is presented as an original contribution to a ...
    Remove from this list | Direct download  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  7. Govert den Hartogh (2004). The Authority of Intention. Ethics 115 (1):6-34.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  8. Ezio Di Nucci (2013). Mindlessness. Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
    Thinking is overrated: golfers perform best when distracted and under pressure; firefighters make the right calls without a clue as to why; and you are yourself ill advised to look at your steps as you go down the stairs, or to try and remember your pin number before typing it in. Just do it, mindlessly. Both empirical psychologists and the common man have long worked out that thinking is often a bad idea, but philosophers still hang on to an intellectualist (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  9. Keith S. Donnellan (1963). Knowing What I Am Doing. Journal of Philosophy 60 (14):401-409.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  10. Fabian Dorsch (2009). Judging and the Scope of Mental Agency. In Lucy O'Brien & Matthew Soteriou (eds.), Mental Actions. Oxford University Press. 38--71.
    What is the scope of our conscious mental agency, and how do we acquire self-knowledge of it? Both questions are addressed through an investigation of what best explains our inability to form judgemental thoughts in direct response to practical reasons. Contrary to what Williams and others have argued, it cannot be their subjection to a truth norm, given that our failure to adhere to such a norm need not undermine their status as judgemental. Instead, it is argued that we cannot (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  11. Robert Dunn (1998). Knowing What I'm About to Do Without Evidence. International Journal of Philosophical Studies 6 (2):231 – 252.
    J. David Velleman casts foreknowledge of one's own next move as psychologically active. As agents, we form prior intentions about what we will do next. Such prior intentions are licensed self-fulfilling beliefs or directive cognitions. These cognitions differ from ordinary predictions in their psychological relation to the evidence, in that they precede that crucial part of the evidence which consists in the fact that they have been formed. However, once formed, these cognitions are epistemologically unremarkable: they are directly justified by (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (5 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  12. Naomi M. Eilan & Johannes Roessler (2003). Agency and Self-Awareness: Mechanisms and Epistemology. In Johannes Roessler (ed.), Agency and Self-Awareness: Issues in Philosophy and Psychology. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
  13. C. Farrer, N. Franck, J. Paillard & M. Jeannerod (2003). The Role of Proprioception in Action Recognition. Consciousness and Cognition 12 (4):609-619.
    This study aimed at evaluating the role of proprioception in the process of matching the final position of one's limbs with an intentional movement. Two experiments were realised with the same paradigm of conscious recognition of one's own limb position from a distorted position. In the first experiment, 22 healthy subjects performed the task in an active and in a passive condition. In the latter condition, proprioception was the only available information since the central signals related to the motor command (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  14. 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 (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  15. Martin F. Fricke (2013). First Person Authority and Knowledge of One's Own Actions. Crítica. Revista Hispanoamericana de Filosofía 45 (134):3-16.
    What is the relation between first person authority and knowledge of one’s own actions? On one view, it is because we know the reasons for which we act that we know what we do and, analogously, it is because we know the reasons for which we avow a belief that we know what we believe. Carlos Moya (2006) attributes some such theory to Richard Moran (2001) and criticises it on the grounds of circularity. In this paper, I examine the view (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  16. Chris Frith (2005). The Self in Action: Lessons From Delusions of Control. Consciousness and Cognition 14 (4):752-770.
  17. John Gibbons (2010). Seeing What You're Doing. In T. Szabo Gendler & J. Hawthorne (eds.), Oxford Studies in Epistemology. Oxford University Press.
    Do we have privileged access to what we’re intentionally doing? Well, that probably depends on what privileged access is. One way to think about privileged access is to try to identify a true formal principle. One thing you’ll need to do when identifying the formal principle is to specify the relevant range of propositions to which you have privileged access. These ranges are usually specified by subject matter: propositions about your own current, conscious propositional attitudes, propositions about your own sensations, (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  18. John Gibbons (2001). Knowledge in Action. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 62 (3):579-600.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (10 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  19. Andy Hamilton (2008). Intention and the Authority of Avowals. Philosophical Explorations 11 (1):23 – 37.
    There is a common assumption that intention is a complex behavioural disposition, or a motivational state underlying such a disposition. Associated with this position is the apparently commonsense view that an avowal of intention is a direct report of an inner motivational state, and indirectly an expression of a belief that it is likely that one will A. A central claim of this article is that the dispositional or motivational model is mistaken since it cannot acknowledge either the future-direction of (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (5 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  20. Stuart Hampshire (1983). Thought and Action. University of Notre Dame Press.
  21. Jennifer Hornsby & Jason Stanley (2005). I-Paper by Jennifer Hornsby. Semantic Knowledge and Practical Knowledge. Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 79 (1):107–130.
    [Jennifer Hornsby] The central claim is that the semantic knowledge exercised by people when they speak is practical knowledge. The relevant idea of practical knowledge is explicated, applied to the case of speaking, and connected with an idea of agents' knowledge. Some defence of the claim is provided. /// [Jason Stanley] The central claim is that Hornsby's argument that semantic knowledge is practical knowledge is based upon a false premise. I argue, contra Hornsby, that speakers do not voice their thoughts (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  22. Keith Hossack (2003). Consciousness in Act and Action. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 2 (3):187-203.
    This paper develops an account of consciousness in action. Both consciousness and action are related to knowledge. A voluntary action is defined as a volition, or something intentionally effected by means of such volitions. Volitions are conscious mental acts whose proper function is to make their content true. A mental act is the exercise of a power of mind and a conscious mental act is identical with knowledge of its own phenomenal character. This set of definitions elucidates the relations between (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (9 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  23. David Hunter (2012). Guidance and Belief. In , Belief and Agency. Calgary University Press. 63-90.
  24. Rosalind Hursthouse (2000). Intention. Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 46:83-.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (6 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  25. R. I. Ingalalli (1992). Knowledge of Action: Logico-Epistemological Analysis. Sri Satguru Publications.
    Remove from this list |
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  26. Yukio Irie (2008). 'Our' Practical Knowledge. Proceedings of the Xxii World Congress of Philosophy 33:21-26.
    When I am asked “What are you doing?”, I answer e.g. “I am making coffee”. Anscombe called the knowledge that this kind of answer involves “practical knowledge”. Practical knowledge is knowledge not involving observation and inference. In this presentation I would like to apply this concept to the collectiveaction of many persons. Given that we are playing soccer if someone comes here and asks “What are you doing now?”, we can answer immediately “We are playing soccer”. I would like to (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (5 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  27. John W. Krakauer Jason Stanley (2013). Motor Skill Depends on Knowledge of Facts. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience 7.
    Those in 20th century philosophy, psychology, and neuroscience who have discussed the nature of skilled action have, for the most part, accepted the view that being skilled at an activity is independent of knowing facts about that activity, i.e. that skill is independent of knowledge of facts. In this paper we question this view of motor skill. We begin by situating the notion of skill in historical and philosophical context. We use the discussion to explain and motivate the view that (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  28. Marc Jeannerod (2003). Consciousness of Action and Self-Consciousness: A Cognitive Neuroscience Approach. In Johannes Roessler & Naomi Eilan (eds.), Agency and Self-Awareness: Issues in Philosophy and Psychology. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
  29. Helen Johnson & Patrick Haggard (2005). Motor Awareness Without Perceptual Awareness. Neuropsychologia. Special Issue 43 (2):227-237.
    The control of action has traditionally been described as "automatic". In particular, movement control may occur without conscious awareness, in contrast to normal visual perception. Studies on rapid visuomotor adjustment of reaching movements following a target shift have played a large part in introducing such distinctions. We suggest that previous studies of the relation between motor performance and perceptual awareness have confounded two separate dissociations. These are: (a) the distinction between motoric and perceptual representations, and (b) an orthogonal distinction between (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  30. O. R. Jones (1960). Things Known Without Observation. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 61:129 - 150.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  31. Paul Katsafanas (2012). Nietzsche on Agency and Self-Ignorance. Journal of Nietzsche Studies 43 (1):5-17.
    Nietzsche frequently claims that agents are in some sense ignorant of their own actions. In this conference paper, I ask two questions: what exactly does Nietzsche mean by this claim, and how would the truth of this claim affect philosophical models of agency? I argue that Nietzsche's claim about self-ignorance is intended to draw attention to the fact that there are influences upon reflective episodes of choice that have three features. First, these influences are pervasive, occurring in every episode of (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  32. Rae Langton (2004). Intention as Faith. In H. Steward & J. Hyman (eds.), Agency and Action. Cambridge University Press Press. 243-258.
    What, if anything, has faith to do with intention?1 By ‘faith’ I have in mind the attitude described by William James: Suppose...that I am climbing in the Alps, and have had the ill-luck to work myself into a position from which the only escape is by a terrible leap. Being without similar experience, I have no evidence of my ability to perform it successfully; but hope and confidence in myself make me sure I shall not miss my aim, and nerve (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  33. Anton Leist (ed.) (2008). Action in Context. Walter De Gruyter.
    The book illustrates the concept of action in three different contexts - the justification of actions, people's life history, and pragmatism.Because of ...
    Remove from this list | Direct download  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  34. Neil Levy (2011). Expressing Who We Are: Moral Responsibility and Awareness of Our Reasons for Action. Analytic Philosophy 52 (4):243-261.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (9 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  35. Anthony J. Marcel (2003). The Sense of Agency: Awareness and Ownership of Action. In Johannes Roessler & Naomi Eilan (eds.), Agency and Self-Awareness: Issues in Philosophy and Psychology. Oxford: Clarendon Press. 48–93.
  36. Michael G. F. Martin (1995). Bodily Awareness: A Sense of Ownership. In Jose Luis Bermudez, Anthony J. Marcel & Naomi M. Eilan (eds.), The Body and the Self. Mit Press. 267–289.
  37. Thomas Nagel (1969). The Boundaries of Inner Space. Journal of Philosophy 66 (14):452-458.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  38. Anne Newstead (2009). Interpreting Anscombe's Intention §32FF. Journal of Philosophical Research 34:157-176.
    G. E. M. Anscombe’s view that agents know what they are doing “without observation” has been met with skepticism and the charge of confusion and falsehood. Simultaneously, some commentators think that Anscombe has captured an important truth about the first-personal character of an agent’s awareness of her actions. This paper attempts an explanation and vindication of Anscombe’s view. The key to the vindication lies in focusing on the role of practical knowledge in an agent’s knowledge of her actions. Few commentators, (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (6 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  39. Anne Newstead (2006). Knowledge by Intention? On the Possibility of Agent's Knowledge. In Stephen Hetherington (ed.), Aspects of Knowing. Elsevier Science. 183.
    A fallibilist theory of knowledge is employed to make sense of the idea that agents know what they are doing 'without observation' (as on Anscombe's theory of practical knowledge).
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  40. Lucy O'Brien (2007). Self-Knowing Agents. Oxford University Press.
    * Fascinating topic in the philosophy of mind and action * Changes the focus of, and gives fresh momentum to, current discussions of self-identification and self-reference * Rigorous discussion of rival views Lucy OBrien argues that a satisfactory account of first-person reference and self-knowledge needs to concentrate on our nature as agents. She considers two main questions. First, what account of first-person reference can we give that respects the guaranteed nature of such reference? Second, what account can we give of (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  41. Lucy F. O'Brien (2005). Self-Knowledge, Agency, and Force. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 71 (3):580–601.
    My aim in this paper is to articulate further what may be called an agency theory of self-knowledge. Many theorists have stressed how important agency is to self- knowledge, and much work has been done drawing connections between the two notions.<sup>2</sup> However, it has not always been clear what _epistemic_ advantage agency gives us in this area and why it does so. I take it as a constraint on an adequate account of how a subject knows her own mental states (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (10 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  42. Lucy F. O'Brien (2003). Moran on Agency and Self-Knowledge. European Journal of Philosophy 11 (3):391-401.
  43. Lucy F. O'Brien (2003). On Knowing One's Own Actions. In Johannes Roessler & Naomi M. Eilan (eds.), Agency and Self-Awareness. Clarendon Press.
    Book description: * Seventeen brand-new essays by leading philosophers and psychologists * Genuinely interdisciplinary work, at the forefront of both fields * Includes a valuable introduction, uniting common threads Leading philosophers and psychologists join forces to investigate a set of problems to do with agency and self-awareness, in seventeen specially written essays. In recent years there has been much psychological and neurological work purporting to show that consciousness and self-awareness play no role in causing actions, and indeed to demonstrate that (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  44. Lucy O'Brien & Matthew Soteriou (eds.) (2009). Mental Actions. Oxford University Press.
    This volume investigates the neglected topic of mental action, and shows its importance for the metaphysics, epistemology, and phenomenology of mind.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  45. Brian O'Shaughnessy (1963). Observation and the Will. Journal of Philosophy 60 (14):367-392.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  46. Christopher Olsen (1969). Knowledge of One's Own Intentional Actions. Philosophical Quarterly 19 (77):324-336.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (5 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  47. Elisabeth Pacherie (2012). Action. In Keith Frankish & William Ramsey (eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of Cognitive Science. Cambridge University Press. 92--111.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  48. Cedric Paternotte (2013). The Epistemic Core of Weak Joint Action. Philosophical Psychology:1-24.
    Over the last three decades, joint action has received various definitions, which for all their differences share many features. However, they cannot fit some perplexing cases of weak joint action, such as demonstrations, where agents rely on distinct epistemic sources, and as a result, have no first-hand knowledge about each other. I argue that one major reason why the definition of such collective actions is akin to the classical ones is that it crucially relies on the concept of common knowledge. (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  49. Christopher Peacocke (2009). Mental Action and Self-Awareness : Epistemology. In Lucy O'Brien & Matthew Soteriou (eds.), Mental Actions. Oxford University Press.
  50. Christopher Peacocke (2009). Mental Action and Self-Awareness : Epistemology. In Lucy O'Brien & Matthew Soteriou (eds.), Mental Actions. Oxford University Press.
1 — 50 / 83