Handlungen, Absichten und praktisches Wissen

Deutsche Zeitschrift für Philosophie 61 (3):373-386 (2013)
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Abstract

In this paper, I argue that in order to understand intentional action we have to understand a distinctive kind of practical knowledge - knowledge that is the cause of what it represents. To do so, I begin by identifying two requirements for an adequate understanding of intentional action: someone who acts intentionally has an intention that is the cause of her action; someone who acts intentionally knows what she is doing. My aim is to show that a theory of intentional action that adequately accounts for both requirements will have to be a theory of practical knowledge. Moreover, I argue that a widespread view of practical thought stands in the way of a proper account of the relevant notion of practical knowledge. According to this view, a practical thought is composed of two independent elements: a causal force and a content. I end by sketching an alternative view of practical thought, which, I claim, provides a better framework for understanding practical knowledge

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David Horst
University of Lisbon

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