Analyse & Kritik 13 (1):61-66 (1991)

Steven Lukes and Alasdair MacIntyre have accused analytical action theory of being motivated by reductionist aims and of ignoring the fact that what is distinctively human about actions is their essentially social character. These reductionist aims are said to 'subvert, the search for the distinctively human. Enterprises that have particularly come under fire are the search for 'basic' actions and attempts to solve problems regarding the 'individuation' of actions. Lukes and MacIntyre are mistaken however, both in their interpretation of the aims which motivate analytical action theory, and in their characterisation of the search for the distinctively human. 'Individuated' or 'basic' actions are not complex social actions reduced down to their 'simplest elements'. They represent attempts to resolve problems which arise prior to the examination of the social character of actions
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DOI 10.1515/auk-1991-0104
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