Teleological Explanations of Actions

G. F. Schueler

in Reasons and Purposes

Published in print January 2003 | ISBN: 9780199250370
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191598364 | DOI:
 Teleological Explanations of Actions

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It is argued here that reference to the agent's purpose or purposes is essential to action explanations and that in fact the belief‐desire theory presupposes such purposes in any case. Action explanations are thus essentially teleological. The suggestion is explored that reference to character traits can be used to meet ‘Davidson's Challenge’ to explain how reasons explanations could work without including a non‐teleological, causal mechanism.

Keywords: action explanations; belief‐desire theory; character traits; Davidson's Challenge; purpose; reasons explanations; teleological

Chapter.  14727 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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