David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Philosophia 37 (1):21-30 (2009)
On the Causal Theory of Action (CTA), internal proper parts of an agent such as desires and intentions are causally responsible for actions. CTA has increasingly come under attack for its alleged failure to account for agency. A recent version of this criticism due to François Schroeter proposes that CTA cannot provide an adequate account of either the executive control or the autonomous control involved in full-fledged agency. Schroeter offers as an alternative a revised understanding of the proper role of consciousness in agency. In this paper we criticize Schroeter’s analysis of the type of consciousness involved in executive control and examine the way in which the conscious self allegedly intervenes in action. We argue that Schroeter’s proposal should not be preferred over recent versions of CTA.
|Keywords||Agency Intentional action Causal theory of action Consciousness Executive control|
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Thomas Nagel (1986). The View From Nowhere. Oxford University Press.
Donald Davidson (1980). Essays on Actions and Events. Oxford University Press.
Ned Block (1995). On a Confusion About a Function of Consciousness. Brain and Behavioral Sciences 18 (2):227-–247.
Harry G. Frankfurt (1988). The Importance of What We Care About: Philosophical Essays. Cambridge University Press.
Timothy O'Connor (2000). Persons and Causes: The Metaphysics of Free Will. Oxford University Press.
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