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From Freedom From to Freedom To: New Perspectives on Intentional Action

Bonicalzi, S; Haggard, P; (2019) From Freedom From to Freedom To: New Perspectives on Intentional Action. Frontiers in Psychology , 10 , Article 1193. 10.3389/fpsyg.2019.01193. Green open access

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Abstract

There are few concepts as relevant as that of intentional action in shaping our sense of self and the interaction with the environment. At the same time, few concepts are so elusive. Indeed, both conceptual and neuroscientific accounts of intentional agency have proven to be problematic. On the one hand, most conceptual views struggle in defining how agents can adequately exert control over their actions. On the other hand, neuroscience settles for definitions by exclusion whereby key features of human intentional actions, including goal-directness, remain underspecified. This paper reviews the existing literature and sketches how this gap might be filled. In particular, we defend a gradualist notion of intentional behavior, which revolves around the following key features: autonomy, flexibility in the integration of causal vectors, and control.

Type: Article
Title: From Freedom From to Freedom To: New Perspectives on Intentional Action
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2019.01193
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2019.01193
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2019 Bonicalzi and Haggard. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
Keywords: intentional action, causal theory, epiphenomenalism, action control, freedom to
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10076205
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