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DOI: 10.4324/9780415249126-V018-1
Version: v1,  Published online: 1998
Retrieved June 24, 2024, from

Article Summary

Suppose that Kevin intends to brush up on his predicate logic, and acts on this intention, because he wants to conduct a good tutorial and he believes that some preparatory revision will help him to do so. In an example like this, we explain why Kevin intends to revise his logic, and why he (intentionally) does revise it, by appealing to the belief and desire which provide his reasons both for his intention and his corresponding intentional action. But how does Kevin’s intention to act, coming between his reasons and his action, help to explain what he does? Central questions in the theory of intention include the following: Are intentions distinct mental attitudes or are they analysable in terms of other mental attitudes – such as beliefs and desires? How is intending to do something related to judging that it is best to do it? What distinctive roles, if any, do intentions play in getting us to act? Are foreseen but undesired consequences of an intentional action intended?

Citing this article:
Dunn, Robert. Intention, 1998, doi:10.4324/9780415249126-V018-1. Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Taylor and Francis,
Copyright © 1998-2024 Routledge.

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