Psychological Explanation and Behavior Broadly Conceived

Behavior and Philosophy 25 (2):137 - 159 (1997)
Abstract
I argue that a broad conception of behavior makes considerable headway toward an account of <span class='Hi'>psychological</span> <span class='Hi'>explanation</span> that preserves the intuitive correctness of belief/desire (folk) <span class='Hi'>psychological</span> explanations and whose explanatory utility is not undercut by neurophysiological explanations. The rough idea behind a broad conception of behavior is that the basic units of behavior, which constitute the primary explananda of psychology, are themselves essentially goal-directed. As such, behavior supervenes on more than the (local) physical properties of the bodily motions which (in part) comprise it; it supervenes also on the historical/teleological properties that give it its goal (or function).
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