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  1. J. Aguilar & A. Buckareff (eds.) (2010). Causing Human Action: New Perspectives on the Causal Theory of Action. Bradford.
  2. Maria Alvarez (2010). Reasons for Action and Practical Reasoning. Ratio 23 (4):355-373.
    This paper seeks a better understanding of the elements of practical reasoning: premises and conclusion. It argues that the premises of practical reasoning do not normally include statements such as ‘I want to ϕ’; that the reasoning in practical reasoning is the same as in theoretical reasoning and that what makes it practical is, first, that the point of the relevant reasoning is given by the goal that the reasoner seeks to realize by means of that reasoning and the subsequent (...)
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  3. 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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  4. 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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  5. Maria Alvarez (2009). How Many Kinds of Reasons? Philosophical Explorations 12 (2):181 – 193.
    Reasons can play a variety of roles in a variety of contexts. For instance, reasons can motivate and guide us in our actions (and omissions), in the sense that we often act in the light of reasons. And reasons can be grounds for beliefs, desires and emotions and can be used to evaluate, and sometimes to justify, all these. In addition, reasons are used in explanations: both in explanations of human actions, beliefs, desires, emotions, etc., and in explanations of a (...)
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  6. Maria Alvarez (2009). Reasons, Desires and Intentional Actions. In Constantine Sandis (ed.), New Essays on the Explanation of Action. Palgrave Macmillan.
  7. Maria Alvarez (2008). Reasons and the Ambiguity of 'Belief'. Philosophical Explorations 11 (1):53 – 65.
    Two conceptions of motivating reasons, i.e. the reasons for which we act, can be found in the literature: (1) the dominant 'psychological conception', which says that motivating reasons are an agent's believing something; and (2) the 'non-psychological' conception, the minority view, which says that they are what the agent believes, i.e. his beliefs. In this paper I outline a version of the minority view, and defend it against what have been thought to be insuperable difficulties - in particular, difficulties concerning (...)
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  8. C. Andreou (2005). Reasons and Purposes: Human Rationality and the Teleological Explanation of Action. Philosophical Review 114 (3):411-413.
  9. N. Arpaly & T. Schroeder (2012). Deliberation and Acting for Reasons. Philosophical Review 121 (2):209-239.
    Theoretical and practical deliberation are voluntary activities, and like all voluntary activities, they are performed for reasons. To hold that all voluntary activities are performed for reasons in virtue of their relations to past, present, or even merely possible acts of deliberation thus leads to infinite regresses and related problems. As a consequence, there must be processes that are nondeliberative and nonvoluntary but that nonetheless allow us to think and act for reasons, and these processes must be the ones that (...)
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  10. 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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  11. 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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  12. Robert Audi (1986). Acting for Reasons. Philosophical Review 95 (4):511-546.
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  13. Kurt Baier (1965). Action and Agent. The Monist 49 (2):183-195.
  14. Derek Baker (forthcoming). The Abductive Case for Humeanism Over Quasi-Perceptual Theories of Desire. Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy.
    A number of philosophers have offered quasi-perceptual theories of desire, according to which to desire something is roughly to “see” it as having value or providing reasons. These are offered as alternatives to the more traditional Humean Theory of Motivation, which denies that desires have a representational aspect. This paper examines the various considerations offered by advocates to motivate quasi-perceptualism. It argues that Humeanism is in fact able to explain the same data that the quasi-perceptualist can explain, and in one (...)
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  15. 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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  16. Zvie A. Bar-On (1974). Causes and Reasons. Philosophia 4 (4):559-560.
  17. Tomás Barrero (2010). Razón, acción Y debilidad de la voluntad. Una lectura semántica. Ideas Y Valores 59 (143):161-187.
    This paper develops some of Austin’s ideas on excuses, stressing their “dimensional” character and relating it to Searle’s distinction between intention-in-action and previous intention, in order to show that the original speech-act shaped distinction between weakness of the will and moral weakness can be embedded in a quite different theoretical framework such as Davidson’s, while Austin’s dimensional classification of actions cannot. Finally, the article analyzes how Grice’s critique of Davidson’s views on akrasia is more faithful to Austin and more radical (...)
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  18. Melissa Barry (2007). Realism, Rational Action, and the Humean Theory of Motivation. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 10 (3):231-242.
    Realists about practical reasons agree that judgments regarding reasons are beliefs. They disagree, however, over the question of how such beliefs motivate rational action. Some adopt a Humean conception of motivation, according to which beliefs about reasons must combine with independently existing desires in order to motivate rational action; others adopt an anti-Humean view, according to which beliefs can motivate rational action in their own right, either directly or by giving rise to a new desire that in turn motivates the (...)
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  19. Peter Brian Barry, Intentional Action, Causation, and Deviance.
    It is reasonably well accepted that the explanation of intentional action is teleological explanation. Very roughly, an explanation of some event, E, is teleological only if it explains E by citing some goal or purpose or reason that produced E. Alternatively, teleological explanations of intentional action explain “by citing the state of affairs toward which the behavior was directed” thereby answering questions like “To what end was the agent’s behavior directed?” Causalism—advocated by causalists—is the thesis that explanations of intentional action (...)
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  20. Gerald Beaulieu (2013). Can Explanatory Reasons Be Good Reasons for Action? Metaphilosophy 44 (4):440-450.
    What kind of thing is a reason for action? Are reasons for action subjective states of the agent, such as desires and/or beliefs? Or are they, rather, objective features of situations that favor certain actions? The suggestion offered in this article is that neither strategy satisfies. What is needed is a third category for classifying reasons which makes them out to be neither purely subjective nor purely objective. In brief: a reason for action is a feature of the situation that (...)
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  21. Henk Bij de Weg, Dretske and the Causality of Reasons.
    In his work on reasons Dretske argues that reasons are only worthwhile for having them if they are causally relevant for explaining behaviour, which he elaborates in his representational theory of explanation. The author argues against this view by showing that there are reasons that are relevant for explaining behaviour but not causally relevant. He gives a linguistic foundation of his argumentation and shows that Dretske’s representational theory cannot explain human actions because man does not only perceive things that have (...)
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  22. Renée Bilodeau (2002). Intention Et Faiblesse de la Volonté. Dialogue 41 (01):27-44.
    Akrasia is both an intentional and an irrational phenomenon. These two characteristics can be reconciled by a careful reconstruction of practical reasoning. I undertake this task along Davidsonian lines, arguing against his critics that the notion of unconditional judgment is the key to an adequate account of akrasia. Unless akrasia is conceived as a failure of the agent to form an unconditional judgment that conforms to her best judgment "all things considered," the intentionality of akrasia is lost. Likewise, I show (...)
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  23. Renée Bilodeau (1993). L'inertie du Mental. Dialogue 32 (03):507-525.
    This paper addresses two objections raised against anomalous monism. Firstly, on the basis of Davidson's assertion that all causal relations fall under strict laws, many critics conclude mental properties are causally inert since they are non-nomic. I argue that this conclusion follows only on the further assumption that all causally efficacious properties are nomic properties. It is perfectly consistent, however, to hold that there is a law covering each causal relation without each causal statement being the instantiation of a law. (...)
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  24. Renée Bilodeau (1985). Attribution d'états mentaux et justification de l'action. Dialogue 24 (04):639-653.
    Plusieurs auteurs se sont inspirés des thèses du deuxième Wittgenstein pour proposer une nouvelle approche en sciences sociales qui viserait la justification plutôt que l'explication de l'action. Sur la base d'une étude de trois types d'énoncés formulés grâce au langage de l'action (factuels, normatifs et attributifs d'états mentaux), cet article évalue les difficultés et possibilités d'une telle suggestion.
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  25. Rüdiger Bittner (2001). Doing Things for Reasons. Oxford University Press.
    What exactly are the reasons we do things, and how are they related to the resulting actions? Bittner explores this question and proposes an answer: a reason is a response to that state of affairs. Elegantly written, this work is a substantial contribution to the fields of rationality, ethics, and action theory.
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  26. J. A. M. Bransen & S. E. Cuypers (eds.) (1998). Human Action, Deliberation and Causation. Dordrecht: Kluwer.
    The essays collected together in this volume, many of them written by leading scholars in the field, explore the commonsensical fact that our presence as ...
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  27. Michael E. Bratman (1995). Review of Action, Intention, and Reason by Robert Audi. [REVIEW] Ethics 105 (4):927-.
  28. Jason Bridges (2011). Dispositions and Rational Explanation. In Jason Bridges Niko Kolodny & Wai-Hung Wong (eds.), The Possibility of Philosophical Understanding: Reflections on the Thought of Barry Stroud. Oxford University Press.
    Some philosophers hold that rational explanations­—explanations of people’s attitudes and actions that cite their reasons for forming these attitudes or performing these actions—are dispositional. The hold that rational explanations do their explanatory work by representing these attitudes and actions as the product of dispositions on the part of the subject. I challenge arguments to this effect by Barry Stroud and Michael Smith. And I argue that human beings do not possess, and could not possess, the dispositions required for the dispositionalist (...)
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  29. Andrei A. Buckareff (2012). An Action Theoretic Problem for Intralevel Mental Causation. Philosophical Issues 22 (1):89-105.
    I take it that the following is a desideratum of our theories in the philosophy of mind. A theory in the philosophy of mind should help us better understand ourselves as agents and aid in our theorizing about the nature of action and agency. In this paper I discuss a strategy adopted by some defenders of nonreductive physicalism in response to the problem of causal exclusion. The strategy, which I refer to as “intralevelism,” relies on treating mental causation as intra (...)
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  30. Andrei A. Buckareff (2012). Bruno Verbeek (Ed.), Reasons and Intentions (Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing, 2008), 243 Pages. ISBN: 9780754660040 (Hbk.). Hardback: £65.00. [REVIEW] Journal of Moral Philosophy 9 (2):308-310.
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  31. 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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  32. Stewart Candlish & Nic Damnjanovic, Reason, Action and the Will: The Fall and Rise of Causalism.
    When Donald Davidson published his influential article ‘Actions, Reasons and Causes’ [1963], many of his contemporaries were convinced that reasons for action could not be causes of anything, so that even an explanation such as ‘Gilbert knelt because he had decided to propose to Gertrude’ did not work by citing Gilbert’s decision as a cause of his kneeling. Davidson was mainly responsible for demolishing that consensus and reinstating causalism—the thesis that psychological or rationalizing explanations of human behaviour are a species (...)
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  33. David Chan (ed.) (2008). Values, Rational Choice and the Will.
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  34. John Ross Churchill (2004). Reasons Explanation and Agent Control. Philosophical Topics 32 (1/2):241-253.
  35. Scott D. Churchill (1991). Reasons, Causes, and Motives: Psychology's Illusive Explanations of Behavior. Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology 11 (1):24-34.
  36. Randolph Clarke (2010). Because She Wanted To. Journal of Ethics 14 (1):27--35.
    Carl Ginet has advanced an account of action explanation on which actions can be entirely uncaused and action explanations need not cite causal factors. Several objections have been raised against this view, and Ginet has recently defended the account. Here it is argued that Ginet’s defense fails to come to grips with the chief problems faced by his view.
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  37. Arthur W. Collins (1997). The Psychological Reality of Reasons. Ratio 10 (2):108–123.
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  38. Donald W. Crawford (1971). Causes, Reasons and Aesthetic Objectivity. American Philosophical Quarterly 8 (3):266 - 274.
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  39. Giuseppina D'Oro (2012). Reasons and Causes: The Philosophical Battle and The Meta-Philosophical War. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 90 (2):207 - 221.
    ?Are the reasons for acting also the causes of action?? When this question was asked in the early 1960s it received by and large a negative reply: ?No, reasons are not causes?. Yet, when the same question ?Are the reasons for acting the causes of action?? is posed some twenty years later, the predominant answer is ?Yes, reasons are causes?. How could one and the same question receive such diverging answers in the space of only a couple of decades? This (...)
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  40. 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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  41. Giuseppina D'Oro (2007). Two Dogmas of Contemporary Philosophy of Action. Journal of the Philosophy of History 1 (1):10-24.
    Davidson's seminal essay "Actions, Reasons and Causes" brought about a paradigm shift in the theory of action. Before Davidson the consensus was that the fundamental task of a theory of action was to elucidate the concept of action and event explanation. The debate concerning the nature of action explanation thus took place primarily in the philosophy of history and social science and was focussed on purely methodological issues. After Davidson it has been assumed that the fundamental challenge for the theory (...)
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  42. 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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  43. Jonathan Dancy (2003). Replies. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 67 (2):468–490.
  44. Jonathan Dancy (2003). Précis of Practical Reality. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 67 (2):423–428.
  45. Stephen Darwall (2003). Desires, Reasons, and Causes. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 67 (2):436–443.
    Jonathan Dancy’s Practical Reality makes a significant contribution to clarifying the relationship between desire and reasons for acting, both the normative reasons we seek in deliberation and the motivating reasons we cite in explanation. About the former, Dancy argues that, not only are normative reasons not all grounded in desires, but, more radically, the fact that one desires something is never itself a normative reason. And he argues that desires fail to figure in motivating reasons also, concluding that neither the (...)
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  46. Stephen Darwall (2003). Review: Desires, Reasons, and Causes. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 67 (2):436 - 443.
  47. Donald Davidson (2001). Essays on Actions and Events: Philosophical Essays Volume 1. Clarendon Press.
    Donald Davidson has prepared a new edition of his classic 1980 collection of Essays on Actions and Events, including two additional essays. In this seminal investigation of the nature of human action, Davidson argues for an ontology which includes events along with persons and other objects. Certain events are identified and explained as actions when they are viewed as caused and rationalized by reasons; these same events, when described in physical, biological, or physiological terms, may be explained by appeal to (...)
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  48. Donald Davidson (1992). Thinking Causes. In John Heil & Alfred R. Mele (eds.), Mental Causation. Oxford University Press. 1993--3.
  49. Donald Davidson (1980). Essays on Actions and Events. Oxford University Press.
  50. Donald Davidson (1963). Actions, Reasons, and Causes. Journal of Philosophy 60 (23):685-700.
    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? We may call such explanations rationalizations, and say that the reason rationalizes the action. In this paper I want to defend the ancient - and common-sense - position that rationalization is a species of ordinary causal explanation. The defense no doubt requires some redeployment, but not more or less complete abandonment of the position, as (...)
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