Process, Action, and Experience

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Rowland Stout
Oxford University Press, Feb 23, 2018 - Philosophy - 256 pages
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There has been a philosophical upheaval recently in our understanding of the metaphysics of the mind. The philosophy of mind and action has traditionally treated its subject matter as consisting of states and events, and completely ignored the category of ongoing process. So the mental things that happen - experiences and actions - have been taken to be completed events and not ongoing processes. But events by their very nature as completed wholes are never present to the agent or subject; only ongoing processes can be present to a subject in the way required for conscious experience and practical self-knowledge. This suggests that a proper understanding of processes is required to understand subjective experience and agency. This volume explores the possibility and advantages of taking processes to be the subject matter of the philosophy of mind and action. The central defining feature of the process argument is its use of the progressive (as opposed to perfective) aspect. But beyond this, philosophers working on the metaphysics of processes do not agree. The contributors to this volume take up this argument in the metaphysics of processes. Are processes continuants? Are they particulars at all, or should we rather be thinking of process activity as a kind of stuff? Process, Action, and Experience considers whether practical reasoning and practical self-knowledge require thinking of action in process terms, and it considers arguments for the processive nature of conscious experience.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
Processes Activities and Actions
20
Processes as Patterns of Occurrence
41
Processes as Continuants and Process as Stuff
58
Experience Process Continuity and Boundary
82
Occurrent States
102
What Is a Process? Modes of Occurrence and Forms of Dynamicity in General Process Theory
120
The Process of Inference
149
The Progress of the Deed
168
Praxeology Imperatives and Shifts of View
185
Ballistic Action
210
Index
229
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About the author (2018)

Rowland Stout is Professor of Philosophy at University College Dublin and is the author of Things that happen because they should (OUP 1996), Action (Acumen 2005), and The Inner Life of a Rational Agent (Edinburgh University Press 2006)

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