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Philosophy of Action

Edited by Constantine Sandis (Oxford Brookes University)
Assistant editor: István Zárdai (University of Pécs, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Philosophy, Oxford Brookes University)
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  1. L. K. B. (1962). El Influjo Del Entendimiento Sobre la Voluntad Según Francisco Zumel, Mercedario (1540-1607). Review of Metaphysics 15 (3):528-528.
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  2. John J. Compton (1979). “Human Science, Human Action, and Human Nature”. Tulane Studies in Philosophy 28:39-61.
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  3. Arthur C. Danto (1979). Basic Actions and Basic Concepts. Review of Metaphysics 32 (3):471 - 485.
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  4. Arthur C. Danto (1979). Causality, Representations, and the Explanation of Actions. Tulane Studies in Philosophy 28:1-19.
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  5. Steven A. Hetcher (1991). Norms. Dissertation, University of Illinois at Chicago
    A philosophical conception of norms is developed and defended. Chapter I first examines the received view of norms in the social scientific and philosophical literature. On this view, norms are rule-like, an essentially subjective or internal conception. It will be argued, however, that norms are better described as patterns of behavior, an objective or external conception. The pattern view achieves a better fit with our intuitive understanding of norms, and is better suited to the role norms are to play in (...)
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  6. A. M. (1967). Demitizzazione E Morale. Review of Metaphysics 20 (4):738-738.
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  7. Ambrose McNicholl (1980). The Acting Person. Philosophical Studies 27 (1):237-242.
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  8. Seumas Miller (1990). Rationalising Conventions. Synthese 84 (1):23 - 41.
    Conformity by an agent to a convention to which the agent is a party is rational only if the agent prefers to conform given the other parties conform and believes the others will conform. But this justification is inadequate; what, for example, is the justification for this belief? The required rational justification requires recourse to (a) preferences for general conformity (as opposed to merely conditional preferences for one's own conformity) and (b) procedures. An agent adopts a procedure when he chooses (...)
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  9. Anthony Peressini (1993). Generalizing Evolutionary Altruism. Philosophy of Science 60 (4):568-586.
    Although accounts of evolutionary altruism which leave the question of whether altruism can evolve in nature open to empirical confirmation/refutation have been worked out for special (two-trait) cases, no real effort has been made to work out such accounts for general (N-trait) cases. It is tempting to take this lack of attention as evidence for an inextricably conventional element, which precludes such accounts from being of practical scientific value. I argue that such accounts do generalize in a natural way. As (...)
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  10. Glen Pettigrove (2006). Hannah Arendt and Collective Forgiving. Journal of Social Philosophy 37 (4):483–500.
    The paper explores the possibility of collectives forgiving and being forgiven. The first half of the paper articulates and amends Hannah Arendt’s account of forgiveness of and by individuals. The second half raises several objections to the possibility of extending this account to forgiveness of and by collectives. In reply, I argue that collectives can have emotions, be guilty, and meet other necessary conditions for forgiving or being forgiven. However, I explain why, even though collective forgiveness is possible, it may, (...)
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  11. John Pollock (2006). Thinking About Acting: Logical Foundations for Rational Decision Making. Oxford University Press, Usa.
    Pollock argues that theories of ideal rationality are largely irrelevant to the decision making of real agents. Thinking about Acting aims to provide a theory of "real rationality.".
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  12. John L. Pollock, Locally Global Planning.
    It is conjectured that MDP and POMDP planning will remain unfeasible for complex domains, so some form of ÒclassicalÓ decision-theoretic planning is sought. However, local plans cannot be properly compared in terms of their expected values, because those values will be affected by the other plans the agent has adopted. Plans must instead be merged into a single Òmaster-planÓ, and new plans evaluated in terms of their contribution to the value of the master plan. To make both the construction and (...)
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  13. Soran Reader (2007). The Other Side of Agency. Philosophy 82 (4):579-604.
    In our philosophical tradition and our wider culture, we tend to think of persons as agents. This agential conception is flattering, but in this paper I will argue that it conceals a more complex truth about what persons are. In 1. I set the issues in context. In 2. I critically explore four features commonly presented as fundamental to personhood in versions of the agential conception: action, capability, choice and independence. In 3. I argue that each of these agential features (...)
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  14. G. C. Robertson (1882). The Action of so-Called Motives. Mind (28):567-570.
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  15. D. S. (1957). L'austerité de la Vie Morale. Review of Metaphysics 10 (3):540-540.
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  16. T. M. Scanlon (2003). Reply to Gauthier and Gibbard. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 66 (1):176–189.
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  17. Krister Segerberg (1982). The Logic of Deliberate Action. Journal of Philosophical Logic 11 (2):233 - 254.
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  18. Amartya K. Sen (1977). Rationality and Morality: A Reply. [REVIEW] Erkenntnis 11 (1):225 - 232.
    The paper examines problems for rationality and morality arising out of prisoners' dilemma. Section I criticizes a k sen's attempt to elimate, By variations of preference patterns, The clash between individual rationality and individual or social optimality. Section ii rejects sen's account of morality as a moral ordering of preferences over outcomes, Because it fails to resolve the conflict raised by prisoners' dilemma between individual and social optimality and creates a new conflict between rationality and individual optimality. Section iii sketches (...)
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  19. Frank Snare (1975). The Argument From Motivation. Mind 84 (333):1-9.
    Much of the plausibility of non-cognitivism in meta-ethics rests on the following argument derived from hume: 1) cognitive judgments alone can never have any motivational influence on our actions, 2) moral judgments have a motivational influence on our actions, and 3) therefore, no moral judgment is simply a cognitive judgment. this paper subjects various forms of this argument to criticism.
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  20. Pf Snowdon, Acting, Trying and Rewiring.
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  21. Jordan Howard Sobel (1990). Maximization, Stability of Decision, and Actions in Accordance with Reason. Philosophy of Science 57 (1):60-77.
    Rational actions reflect beliefs and preferences in certain orderly ways. The problem of theory is to explain which beliefs and preferences are relevant to the rationality of particular actions, and exactly how they are relevant. One distinction of interest here is between an agent's beliefs and preferences just before an action's time, and his beliefs and preferences at its time. Theorists do not agree about the times of beliefs and desires that are relevant to the rationality of action. Another distinction (...)
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  22. R. Sorensen (1997). Advertisement for a Cure for Incontinence. Mind 106 (424):743-743.
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  23. Roy Sorensen, A Cure for Incontinence!
    Tired of being weak-willed? Do you want to end procrastination and back-sliding? Are you envious of those paragons of self-control who always do what they consider best? Thanks to a breakthrough in therapeutic philosophy, you too can now close the gap between what you think you ought to do and what you actually do. Just send $1000 to the address below and you will never again succumb to temptation. This is a MONEY-BACK GUARANTEE. The first time you do something that (...)
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  24. Emidio Spinelli (2001). Hans Jonas: Freedom and Determinism in the Ancient World. Graduate Faculty Philosophy Journal 23 (1):71-84.
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  25. Michael Stocker (1970). Intentions and Act Evaluations. Journal of Philosophy 67 (17):589-602.
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  26. L. W. Sumner (1968). Value Judgments and Action. Mind 77 (307):383-399.
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  27. Peter Swiggart (1962). Doing and Deciding to Do. Analysis 23 (1):17 - 19.
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  28. Béla Szabados (2009). Self-Deception and Akrasia: A Comparative Conceptual Analysis, Marc Sultana Analecta Gregoriana, Vol. 300 Roma: Editrice Pontificia Università Gregoriana, 2006, Xx + 418 Pp. Doi:10.1017/S0012217309090143. [REVIEW] Dialogue 48 (01):214-.
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  29. A. E. Taylor (1942). Freedom and Personality Again. Philosophy 17 (65):26 - 37.
    In an essay entitled “Freedom and Personality” I have contended that “intelligence is a principle of indetermination within us.” As I find that my argument, though to myself it appears incontrovertible, has not produced conviction in some quarters where I had hoped it might be effective, I can only suppose that, presumably by my own fault, it was not stated as clearly as it should have been. This must be my excuse for returning to the subject; in doing so I (...)
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  30. S. J. Thomas Murphy (1966). St Thomas's Intention in the de Unione. Heythrop Journal 7 (3):301–309.
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  31. Jan Thomas (1995). What We Can Say About What We Can Do: A Defense of the Conditional Analysis of 'Can'. Philosophical Papers 24 (3):167-182.
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  32. Laurence Thomas (1985). Beliefs and the Motivation to Be Just. American Philosophical Quarterly 22 (4):347 - 352.
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  33. Pan Tianqun (2010). Conversation Through Actions and the Changing of Epistemic States in a Game. Frontiers of Philosophy in China 5 (4):666-676.
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  34. William Todd (1971). Intentions and Programs. Philosophy of Science 38 (4):530-541.
    It is suggested that there is a strong connection between intentions and plans, and these plans are then taken to be programs of the sort suggested by Miller, Galanter, and Pribram in Plans and the Structure of Behavior. There is then a hierarchy of programs connected with intentions stretching from the macroscopic level of ordinary discourse to the neurological level. It is argued that as we proceed downwards we arrive at a threshold below which we can still describe the phenomena (...)
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  35. Deborah Tollefsen (2006). The Rationality of Collective Guilt. Midwest Studies in Philosophy 30 (1):222–239.
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  36. Josefa Toribio (2002). Semantic Responsibility. Philosophical Explorations 1 (1):39-58.
    In this paper I attempt to develop a notion of responsibility (semantic responsibility) that is to the notion of belief what epistemic responsibility is to the notion of justification. 'Being semantically responsible' is shown to involve the fulfilment of cognitive duties which allow the agent to engage in the kind of reason-laden discourses which render her beliefs appropriately sensitive to correction. The concept of semantic responsibility suggests that the notion of belief found in contemporary philosophical debates about content implicitly encompasses (...)
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  37. Stephen Turner (1991). Rationality Today. Sociological Theory 9 (2):191-194.
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  38. Ton Van Den Beld (2002). Can Collective Responsibility for Perpetrated Evil Persist Over Generations? Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 5 (2):181-200.
    In the first part of the paper an argument is developed to the effect that (1) there is no moral ground for individual persons to feel responsible for or guilty about crimes of their group to which they have in no way contributed; and (2) since there is no irreducibly collective responsibility nor guilt at any time, there is no question of them persisting over time. In the second part it is argued that there is nevertheless sufficient reason for innocent (...)
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  39. Charles Varela (1999). Determinism and the Recovery of Human Agency: The Embodying of Persons. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 29 (4):385–402.
    Intending the recovery of human agency with the aid of theories of human socio-cultural life, Turner and Harre do so however in terms of conflicting conceptions of the embodying of persons. Consequently, their theories share the problem of determinism and embodied human agency. This is the problem of the proper location of agency with regard to the person, the body, and society. These theories then are in fundamental conflict on exactly this issue of the proper location of agency. Turner's thesis (...)
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  40. Cécile Van de Velde (forthcoming). « Indignés » : les raisons de la colère. Cités.
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  41. J. David Velleman (2008). The Way of the Wanton. In Catriona Mackenzie & Kim Atkins (eds.), Practical Identity and Narrative Agency. Routledge.
    Harry Frankfurt's philosophy of action as a prolegomenon to the Zhuangzi.
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  42. Bruce Vermazen (1993). Objects of Intention. Philosophical Studies 71 (3):223 - 265.
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  43. Bruce Vermazen (1993). The Belief Requirement on Intending. Analysis 53 (4):239 - 242.
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  44. Ruth Weintraub (1995). Psychological Determinism and Rationality. Erkenntnis 43 (1):67-79.
    There are arguments which purport to rebut psychological determinism by appealing to its alleged incompatibility with rationality. I argue that they all fail. Against Davidson, I argue that rationality does not preclude the existence of psychological laws. Against Popper, I argue that rationality is compatible with the possibility of predicting human actions. Against Schlesinger, I claim that Newcomb's problem cannot be invoked to show that human actions are unpredictable. Having vindicated the possibility of a rationally-based theory of action, I consider (...)
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  45. Paul Weirich (1981). Decision When Desires Are Uncertain. Bowling Green Studies in Applied Philosophy 3:69-75.
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  46. Andrea C. Westlund (2009). Deciding Together. Philosophers' Imprint 9 (10).
    In this paper I develop a conception of joint practical deliberation as a special type of shared cooperative activity, through which co-deliberators jointly accept reasons as applying to them as a pair or group. I argue, moreover, that the aspiration to deliberative “pairhood” is distinguished by a special concern for mutuality that guides each deliberator’s readiness to accept a given consideration as a reason-for-us. It matters to each of us, as joint deliberators, that each party’s (individual) reasons for accepting something (...)
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  47. C. H. Whiteley (1971). Mr. Gustafson on Doubting One's Own Intentions. Mind 80 (317):108.
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  48. Burleigh T. Wilkins (1971). Concerning 'Motive' and 'Intention'. Analysis 31 (4):139 - 142.
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  49. Richard Hays Williams (1942). Scheler's Contributions to the Sociology of Affective Action with Special Attention to the Problem of Shame. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 2 (3):348-358.
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  50. David Sloan Wilson (1992). On the Relationship Between Evolutionary and Psychological Definitions of Altruism and Selfishness. Biology and Philosophy 7 (1):61-68.
    I examine the relationship between evolutionary definitions of altruism that are based on fitness effects and psychological definitions that are based on the motives of the actor. I show that evolutionary altruism can be motivated by proximate mechanisms that are psychologically either altruistic or selfish. I also show that evolutionary definitions do rely upon motives as a metaphor in which the outcome of natural selection is compared to the decisions of a psychologically selfish (or altruistic) individual. Ignoring the precise nature (...)
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