Reasons and Causes

Edited by Errol Lord (University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University)
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  1. Explanations of Human Action.Robert Ackermann - 1967 - Dialogue 6 (1):18-28.
  2. Causing Human Actions: New Perspectives on the Causal Theory of Action.Jesús H. Aguilar & Andrei A. Buckareff (eds.) - 2010 - Bradford.
    The causal theory of action is widely recognized in the literature of the philosophy of action as the "standard story" of human action and agency -- the nearest approximation in the field to a theoretical orthodoxy. This volume brings together leading figures working in action theory today to discuss issues relating to the CTA and its applications, which range from experimental philosophy to moral psychology. Some of the contributors defend the theory while others criticize it; some draw from historical sources (...)
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  3. Explaining Actions and Explaining Bodily Movements.Maria Alvares - 2013 - In G. D’Oro, A. Laitinen & C. Sandis (eds.), Reasons and Causes. Palgrave-Macmillan. pp. 141-159.
  4. Reasons for Action and Practical Reasoning.Maria Alvarez - 2010 - 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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  5. Kinds of Reasons: An Essay in the Philosophy of Action.Maria Alvarez - 2010 - Oxford University Press.
    Understanding human beings and their distinctive rational and volitional capacities requires a clear account of such things as reasons, desires, emotions, and motives, and how they combine to produce and explain human behaviour. Maria Alvarez presents a fresh and incisive study of these concepts, centred on reasons and their role in human agency.
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  6. Reasons, Desires and Intentional Actions.Maria Alvarez - 2009 - In Constantine Sandis (ed.), New Essays on the Explanation of Action. Palgrave-Macmillan.
  7. Review of Mark Schroeder's 'Slaves of the Passions'. [REVIEW]Maria Alvarez - unknown
  8. How Many Kinds of Reasons?Maria Alvarez - 2009 - 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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  9. Reasons and the Ambiguity of 'Belief'.Maria Alvarez - 2008 - 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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  10. Reasons and Purposes: Human Rationality and the Teleological Explanation of Action.C. Andreou - 2005 - Philosophical Review 114 (3):411-413.
  11. Deliberation and Acting for Reasons.N. Arpaly & T. Schroeder - 2012 - 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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  12. Action, Intention, and Reason.Robert Audi - 1993 - 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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  13. Practical Reasoning.Robert Audi - 1989 - 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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  14. Acting for Reasons.Robert Audi - 1986 - Philosophical Review 95 (4):511-546.
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  15. Tuomela on the Explanation of Human Action. [REVIEW]Robert Audi - 1980 - Synthese 44 (2):285-306.
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  16. Wants and Intentions in the Explanation of Action.Robert Audi - 1979 - Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 9 (3):227–249.
    This paper replies to criticisms of the author's accounts of intending ("journal of philosophy", 1973), wanting ("philosophical studies", 1973), and common-sense explanations of intentional actions; and it extends the nomological theory of intentional action developed in those and other articles. the paper argues, negatively, that theoretical construct accounts of intentional concepts do not entail implausible views of self-knowledge, nor assimilate reasons to mechanical causes; and, positively, that both the way in which reasons render intelligible the actions they explain and the (...)
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  17. Intentionalistic Explanations of Action.Robert Audi - 1971 - Metaphilosophy 2 (3):241–250.
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  18. Rational Credibility and Causal Explanations of Belief.William H. Austin - 1984 - Neue Zeitschrift für Systematicsche Theologie Und Religionsphilosophie 26 (2-3):116-133.
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  19. Reasons and Theories of Sensory Affect.Murat Aydede & Matthew Fulkerson - forthcoming - In David Bain, Michael Brady & Jennifer Corns (eds.), The Nature of Pain.
    Some sensory experiences are pleasant, some unpleasant. This is a truism. But understanding what makes these experiences pleasant and unpleasant is not an easy job. Various difficulties and puzzles arise as soon as we start theorizing. There are various philosophical theories on offer that seem to give different accounts for the positive or negative affective valences of sensory experiences. In this paper, we will look at the current state of art in the philosophy of mind, present the main contenders, critically (...)
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  20. Reasons, Explanation, and Saramago's Bell.Susan E. Babbitt - 2005 - Hypatia 20 (4):144-163.
    : In this essay, I suggest that significant insights of recent feminist philosophy lead, among other things, to the thought that it is not always better to choose than to be compelled to do what one might have done otherwise. However, few feminists, if any, would defend such a suggestion. I ask why it is difficult to consider certain ideas that, while challenging in theory, are, nonetheless, rather unproblematic in practice. I suggest that some questions are not pursued seriously enough (...)
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  21. The Absent Foundation: Heidegger on the Rationality of Being.Jussi Backman - 2005 - Philosophy Today 49 (Supplement):175-184.
    For Heidegger, the fundamental “rationality” of Western metaphysics lies in the fact that its “leading question” concerning beings as beings constantly refers back to the question concerning the ground (arche, ratio, Grund) of beings. Whereas metaphysics has sought to ground beings in ideal beingness, Heidegger attempts to think beingness as itself based on the withdrawing “background” dimension of no-thing-ness that grounds finite presence by differing from it. In Heidegger’s earlier work, the structure of this “grounding” is considered in terms of (...)
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  22. Action and Agent.Kurt Baier - 1965 - The Monist 49 (2):183-195.
  23. Reason and Action. Bruce Aune. Dordrecht-Holland: D. Reidel. 1977. Pp. 206.John A. Bailey - 1979 - Dialogue 18 (4):590-594.
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  24. The Abductive Case for Humeanism Over Quasi-Perceptual Theories of Desire.Derek Baker - 2014 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 8 (2):1-29.
    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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  25. Attitudes in Action: A Causal Account.Lynne Rudder Baker - 2002 - 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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  26. Comparative Anthropology and Action Sciences - An Essay on Knowing to Act and Acting to Know.S. N. Balagangadhara - 1987 - Philosophica 40.
    It begins by suggesting that it would be reasonable to accept the idea that theories of conversation and theories of argumentation are closely related. Working on the assumption that there is a close relationship between the two, it looks at some cross-cultural scenarios, and show how our theories of conversations generate implausible conclusions if asked to account for these scenarios. These conclusions, it shows, arise due to culture-specific assumptions made by theories of conversation.
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  27. Causes and Reasons.Zvie A. Bar-On - 1974 - Philosophia 4 (4):559-560.
  28. George Wilson, The Intentionality of Human Action. [REVIEW]Gerald Barnes - 1990 - Philosophy in Review 10:212-216.
  29. George Wilson, The Intentionality of Human Action Reviewed By.Gerald W. Barnes - 1990 - Philosophy in Review 10 (5):212-216.
  30. Explanation of Human Action.Ronald Lee Barnette - 1972 - Dissertation, University of California, Irvine
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  31. Reason, Action, and Weakness of the Will: A Semantic Approach.Tomas Barrero - 2010 - 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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  32. Realism, Rational Action, and the Humean Theory of Motivation.Melissa Barry - 2007 - 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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  33. Intentional Action, Causation, and Deviance.Peter Brian Barry - manuscript
    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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  34. Can Explanatory Reasons Be Good Reasons for Action?Gerald Beaulieu - 2013 - 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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  35. Reasons Explanations: Skepticism About Causal Theories.Bryan David Henry Benham - 2002 - Dissertation, The University of New Mexico
    In this dissertation I argue for a skepticism regarding the possibility of a satisfactory causal account of reasons explanations. Davidson has famously argued that causation is the best way to account for the explanatory relation between reasons and actions. However, [ argue that in order to be convincing Davidson's argument must be supplemented with a satisfactory causal account. I review three of the leading causal accounts given by Davidson , Fodor and Dretske , but I find that none gives an (...)
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  36. Action, Reason, and Purpose.Daniel Bennett - 1965 - Journal of Philosophy 62 (4):85-96.
  37. Explanation and Interpretation of Action.Lars Bergstr - 1990 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 4 (1):3 – 15.
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  38. Explanation and Interpretation of Action.Lars Bergström - 1990 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 4 (1):3-15.
    Abstract Contrary to what is usually taken for granted, the traditional positivistic and hermeneutic accounts of explanations of human actions do not really contradict one another. There is no logical or epistemological difference between explanations in this area and explanations in the natural sciences. However, if W. V. Quine and D. Davidson are right, there may be an ontological difference between the explanation of natural events and the interpretation of actions.
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  39. Expressive Actions.Monika Betzler - 2009 - Inquiry 52 (3):272-292.
    Actions expressing emotions (such as caressing the clothes of one's dead friend in grief, or tearing apart a photograph out of jealousy) pose a notorious challenge to action theorists. They are thought to be intentional in that they are in some sense under the agent's control. They are not thought to be done for a reason, however, because they cannot be explained by considerations that favor them from the agent's point of view. This seems to be the case, at least, (...)
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  40. Dretske and the Causality of Reasons.Henk Bij de Weg - manuscript
    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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  41. The Motivational Strength of Intentions.Renée Bilodeau - 2006 - The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy 9:129-135.
    According to the early versions of the causal theory of action, intentional actions were both produced and explained by a belief desire pair. Since the end of the seventies, however, most philosophers consider intentions as an irreducible and indispensable component of any adequate account of intentional action. The aim of this paper is to examine and evaluate some of the arguments that gave rise to the introduction of the concept of intention in action theory. My contention is that none of (...)
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  42. The Motivational Strength of Intentions.Renée Bilodeau - 2006 - The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy 9:129-135.
    According to the early versions of the causal theory of action, intentional actions were both produced and explained by a beliefdesire pair. Since the end of the seventies, however, most philosophers consider intentions as an irreducible and indispensable component of any adequate account of intentional action. The aim of this paper is to examine and evaluate some of the arguments that gave rise to the introduction of the concept of intention in action theory. My contention is that none of them (...)
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  43. Intention et faiblesse de la volonté.Renée Bilodeau - 2002 - 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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  44. Intention Et Faiblesse de la Volonté.Renée Bilodeau - 2002 - Dialogue: Canadian Philosophical Review / Revue canadienne de philosophie 41 (1):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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  45. La satisfaction d'être dupe.Renée Bilodeau - 2001 - Philosophiques 28 (2):381-393.
    Je me propose d'examiner la solution davidsonnienne au problème de la duperie de soi afin de clarifier en quel sens il s'agit d'un acte intentionnel. Après une étude de quelques difficultés liées au concept même de duperie de soi, mon analyse met en lumière que la notion de partition de l'esprit que Davidson emprunte à son traitement de la faiblesse de la volonté ne peut être appliquée de manière satisfaisante à ce nouveau problème. J'indique ensuite que non seulement Davidson mais (...)
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  46. Du pouvoir causal des intentions.Renée Bilodeau - 2000 - Actes du XXVIIe Congrès de L’Association des Sociétés de Philosophie de Langue Française:718-725.
    Je défends l'idée que le seul rôle causal des intentions est d'initier l'action. Elles ont, éventuellement, d’autres fonctions qui se manifestent pendant le déroulement de l’action. Toutefois, ces fonctions sont d’ordre délibératif, non causal.
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  47. La philosohie de l'action.Renée Bilodeau - 2000 - In Pascal Engel (ed.), Précis de philosophie analytique. P.U.F.. pp. 189-212.
    Introduction à quelques problèmes de philosophie de l'action: la nature de l'action, l'individuation de l'action, la théorie causale, les raisons et les causes, les chaînes causales déviantes, la notion d'intention, la "simple view", les raisonnements pratiques.
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  48. L'inertie du mental.Renée Bilodeau - 1993 - 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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  49. Attribution d'états mentaux et justification de l'action.Renée Bilodeau - 1985 - 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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  50. Book Review:Intending and Acting: Towards a Naturalized Action Theory Myles Brand. [REVIEW]Robert W. Binkley - 1986 - Philosophy of Science 53 (3):459-.
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