Humeanism, psychologism, and the normative story [Book Review]
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jonathan Jenkins Ichikawa
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 67 (2):460–467 (2003)
Jonathan Dancy’s Practical Reality is, I think, best understood as an attempt to undermine our allegiance to these two purported constitutive claims about action. If we must think that psychological states figure in the explanation of action then, according to Dancy, we should suppose that those psychological states are beliefs rather than desire-belief pairs. Dancy thus prefers pure cognitivism to Humeanism. But in fact he thinks that we have no business accepting any form of psychologism in the first place; no business accepting a theory that explains an agent’s actions by reference to that agent’s psychological states. For though it is indeed a truism that actions are explained by reasons, Dancy argues that psychological states are only rarely, if ever, reasons. He thus prefers the unadorned normative story, a story which contents itself with explaining actions by laying out the considerations in the light of which the agent acted as he did, to any form of psychologism. I will consider Dancy’s arguments for these claims in turn.
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References found in this work BETA
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Citations of this work BETA
Susanne Mantel (2014). No Reason for Identity: On the Relation Between Motivating and Normative Reasons. Philosophical Explorations 17 (1):49-62.
Christian Miller (2008). Motivation in Agents. Noûs 42 (2):222–266.
Constantine Sandis (2012). The Objects of Action Explanation. Ratio 25 (3):326-344.
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Giles Pearson (2015). XIV—What Are Sources of Motivation? Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 115 (3 pt 3):255-276.
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