Mattering and mechanism: Must a mechanistic universe be depressing?

Ratio 24 (3):326-339 (2011)
Abstract
There is an intuition to the effect that, if human actions are explicable in scientific terms – that is, if mechanism holds – then our lives and actions do not matter. “Mattering” depends on successful intentional explanations of human actions. The intuition springs from an intuitive analogy between manipulation and mechanism: just as a manipulated agent's actions are not successfully explained in intentional terms, neither are the actions of a mechanistic agent. I explore ways to avoid the conclusion of this argument. Some of these ways are more promising than others, but all have non-trivial philosophical consequences
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 9,360
External links
  • Through your library Configure
    References found in this work BETA

    No references found.

    Citations of this work BETA

    No citations found.

    Similar books and articles
    Rosalind Hursthouse (1991). Arational Actions. Journal of Philosophy 88 (2):57-68.
    Robert N. Brandon (1984). Grene on Mechanism and Reductionism: More Than Just a Side Issue. PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1984:345 - 353.
    Douglas C. Long (1979). Agents, Mechanisms, and Other Minds. In Donald F. Gustafson & Bangs L. Tapscott (eds.), Body, Mind And Method. Dordrecht: Reidel. 129--148.
    Rob Vanderbeeken (2006). Can Intentional and Functional Explanations of Actions Coexist? The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy 9:143-147.
    Robert A. Skipper & Roberta L. Millstein (2005). Thinking About Evolutionary Mechanisms: Natural Selection. Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 36 (2):327-347.
    Analytics

    Monthly downloads

    Added to index

    2011-08-05

    Total downloads

    13 ( #100,552 of 1,088,905 )

    Recent downloads (6 months)

    1 ( #69,661 of 1,088,905 )

    How can I increase my downloads?

    My notes
    Sign in to use this feature


    Discussion
    Start a new thread
    Order:
    There  are no threads in this forum
    Nothing in this forum yet.