Bede Rundle

in Mind in Action

Published in print October 1997 | ISBN: 9780198236917
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191679414 | DOI:

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A natural perspective on action began to take shape with the observation that with animals, as well as with human beings, there is a contrast between reflex movements and such purposive activities as those displayed by a creature as it explores the world about it. However, what is essential to action is its purposive or goal-directed nature. A movement counts as an action if it is voluntary. On the other hand, it was suggested that voluntary responses as much as voluntary reactions might have external causes to the agent. Overall, however, the real difference between humans and animals lies in the deliberating and reasoning which humans alone are capable of and which may issue in the expectation or belief.

Keywords: reflex movements; purpose; causation; reasoning; expectation; action; Skinner scheme

Chapter.  15701 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

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