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Stephen Turner: The Belief-Desire Model of Action Explanation Reconsidered: Thoughts on Bittner

12.12.2017

The LMS - Center welcomes Stephen Turner (University of South Florida) to speak on "The Belief-Desire Model of Action Explanation Reconsidered: Thoughts on Bittner".

Abstract:
The belief-desire model of action explanation is deeply ingrained in
multiple disciplines. There is reason to think that it is a cultural
artifact. But is there an alternative? In this discussion I will consider
the radical critique of this action explanation model by Rüdiger
Bittner, which argues that the model appeals to dubious mental
entities, and argues for a model of reasons as responses to states
or events. Instead, for Bittner, agents are reason-selectors—
selecting the states or events to respond to and selecting the ones
the agent is disposed to respond to. By getting rid of the explanatory
role of beliefs, this model runs into difficulties over errors usually
attributed to false beliefs. These can be resolved by expanding the
notion of dispositions to cover the case of false belief. But this
suggests that the belief-reason model serves to divide the category
of dispositions in an arbitrary or culturally specific way.

When: Dec. 12, 2017 from 5:30 pm till 7:00 pm
Wher: Philosophical Faculty, Room #B13

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