Philosophy | Philosophy of Action
P366 | 3289 | Senchuk


Let us not forget this:  when “I raise my arm,” my arm goes up.  And
the problem arises:  what’s left over if I subtract the fact that my
arm goes up from the fact that I raise my arm?.......Ludwig
Wittgenstein

Action, it seems, is not just physical movement; but what else is
it?  Many philosophers have been quick to suggest that the something
else is mental – e.g. a desire, a volition, or an intention.  But
these suggestions can seem to raise more questions than they answer,
questions about the nature of these mental things and their (causal
or other) relations to the physical events involved in actions.
These questions point back to some classical philosophical
controversies about free will and determinism and forward to some
contemporary efforts to clarify the nature of intentions and their
role in action.  This course will consider some influential recent
philosophical writings that strike out in promising new directions of
theorizing about actions.

This course satisfies the metaphysics and epistemology course
requirement of the philosophy major.