Action, Knowledge, and Will

Paperback | December 1, 2016

byJohn Hyman

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What is the difference between the movements in our bodies we cause personally ourselves, such as the movements of our legs or our lips when we walk or speak, and the movements we do not cause personally, such as the contraction of the heart? Is an act that is done under duress donevoluntarily, out of choice? Should duress exculpate a defendant completely, or should it merely mitigate the criminality of an act? When we explain an intentional act by stating our reasons for doing it, do we explain it causally or teleologically, or both? Should we care whether our choices areguided by knowledge or mere true belief?In Action, Knowledge, and Will, John Hyman explores these and other central problems in the philosophy of action and the theory of knowledge, and connects these areas of enquiry in a new way. The main premise of the book is that human action has four irreducibly different dimensions, each with itsown family of concepts: * a physical dimension, in which the principal concepts are those of agent, power, and causation;* a psychological dimension, with the concepts of desire, aim, and intention;* an ethical dimension, with the concepts of voluntariness and choice;* an intellectual dimension, with the concepts of reason, knowledge, and belief. Studying each of these dimensions of human action separately yields a string of original results, culminating in a new analysis of the relationship between knowledge and rational behaviour, which provides the foundation for a new theory of knowledge itself.

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What is the difference between the movements in our bodies we cause personally ourselves, such as the movements of our legs or our lips when we walk or speak, and the movements we do not cause personally, such as the contraction of the heart? Is an act that is done under duress donevoluntarily, out of choice? Should duress exculpate a ...

John Hyman has been a Fellow of The Queen's College, Oxford since 1988 and Professor of Aesthetics in the University of Oxford since 2008. He has edited the British Journal of Aesthetics since 2008. He held a Getty Scholarship at the Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles, in 2001-2002, a Fellowship at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin ...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:272 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.68 inPublished:December 1, 2016Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198769318

ISBN - 13:9780198769316

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Table of Contents

Preface1. Agency and the Will2. Action and Integration3. Acts and Events4. Voluntariness and Choice5. Desire and Intention6. Reason and Knowledge7. Knowledge as an Ability8. The Road to LarissaAppendix: The Modern Theory of the WillEndnotesBibliographyAcknowledgementsIndex

Editorial Reviews

"How could knowledge be even better for us than true beliefs that we have good reason to accept? John Hyman answers this question in Action, Knowledge, and Will. It is by no means the only question he answers in this rich, delightful book. He reaches fresh, insightful conclusions about humanaction and thought by attending to connections between questions usually treated separately. He explains and defends those conclusions sharply and carefully, with admirable regard for what the words involved in the question actually mean." --Barry Stroud, Times Literary Supplement