Philosophical Studies 176 (6):1639-1666 (2019)

Authors
Samuel Asarnow
Macalester College
Abstract
This morning I intended to get out of bed when my alarm went off. Hearing my alarm, I formed the intention to get up now. Yet, for a time, I remained in bed, irrationally lazy. It seems I irrationally failed to execute my intention. Such cases of execution failure pose a challenge for Mentalists about rationality, who believe that facts about rationality supervene on facts about the mind. For, this morning, my mind was in order; it was my action that apparently made me irrational. What, then, should Mentalists say about the phenomenon of execution failure? The phenomenon of execution failure, and the puzzle it raises for Mentalists, have rarely been discussed. This paper addresses the puzzle in two parts. First, it argues that execution failure is a real phenomenon. It is possible for agents to irrationally fail to act on their present-directed intentions. It follows that Mentalists in the philosophy of action must solve the puzzle of explaining what is irrational about cases of execution failure. Second, this paper begins the search for such a solution. It considers six possible resolutions to the puzzle, arguing that none is obviously the most attractive. These resolutions include a requirement of overall conative consistency, an appeal to the norm of intention consistency, a form of Volitionalism, an appeal to factive mental states, and a proposal due to Garrett Cullity, and a novel requirement of proper functioning.
Keywords action  intention  execution failure  mentalism  rationality  dispositions
Categories (categorize this paper)
ISBN(s)
DOI 10.1007/s11098-018-1083-x
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Freedom of the Will and the Concept of a Person.Harry G. Frankfurt - 1971 - Journal of Philosophy 68 (1):5-20.

View all 126 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Shared Agency Without Shared Intention.Samuel Asarnow - 2020 - Philosophical Quarterly 70 (281):665-688.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Dogmatism Repuzzled.Assaf Sharon & Levi Spectre - 2010 - Philosophical Studies 148 (2):307 - 321.
Resisting Imaginative Resistance.Kathleen Stock - 2005 - Philosophical Quarterly 55 (221):607–624.
Two Notions of Intentional Action? Solving a Puzzle in Anscombe’s Intention.Lucy Campbell - 2018 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 26 (3):578-602.
Solving the Moorean Puzzle.Michael Blome-Tillmann - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (2):493-514.
On the Rationalist Solution to Gregory Kavka's Toxin Puzzle.Ken Levy - 2009 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 90 (2):267-289.
The Volitive and the Executive Function of Intentions.Christoph Lumer - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 166 (3):511-527.
A Puzzle About Proportionality.David Alm - 2019 - Res Publica 25 (2):133-149.
On Art and Intention.Steven Farrelly‐Jackson - 1997 - Heythrop Journal 38 (2):172–179.
On Art and Intention.Steven Farrelly‐Jackson - 1997 - Heythrop Journal 38 (2):172-179.
Fumerton's Puzzle for Theories of Rationality.Ru Ye - 2015 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 93 (1):93-108.
Failed-Art and Failed Art-Theory.Christy Mag Uidhir - 2010 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (3):381-400.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2018-03-17

Total views
139 ( #74,022 of 2,439,135 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
15 ( #45,683 of 2,439,135 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes