Reasons and the ambiguity of 'belief'

Alvarez, Maria (2008) Reasons and the ambiguity of 'belief'. Philosophical Explorations, 11, (1), 53-65. (doi:10.1080/13869790701772435).


[img] PDF - Author's Original
Download (246Kb)


Two conceptions of motivating reasons, i.e., the reasons for which we act, can be found in the
literature: (i) the dominant ‘psychological conception’, which says that motivating reasons
are an agent’s believing something; and (ii) the ‘non-psychological’ conception, the minority
view, which says that they are what the agent believes – his beliefs. In this paper I outline
and defend a version of the second conception of motivating reasons.
Similar conceptions of motivating reasons have been defended persuasively by a
minority of philosophers recently. However, this minority position is still regarded as
implausible or confused, mostly because it is not sufficiently well understood, or because it is
thought to bring with it insuperable difficulties. Here I offer a detailed and distinctive version
of that minority view – a version that, I think, overcomes the apparently insuperable
difficulties associated with the minority view. I also offer an account of the relation between
motivating reasons and the explanation of action.

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1080/13869790701772435
ISSNs: 1386-9795 (print)
Related URLs:
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
Divisions : University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Humanities > Philosophy
ePrint ID: 49329
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
March 2008Published
Date Deposited: 30 Oct 2007
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 12:26

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics