Acting Without Me: Corporate Agency and the First Person Perspective

In Stephen Biggs & Heimir Geirsson (eds.), Routledge Handbook of Linguistic Reference. New York: Routledge. pp. 599-613 (2020)
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In our book The Inessential Indexical we argue that the various theses of essential indexicality all fail. Indexicals are not essential, we conclude. One essentiality thesis we target in the third chapter is the claim that indexical attitudes are essential for action. Our strategy is to give examples of what we call impersonal action rationalizations , which explain actions without citing indexical attitudes. To defeat the claim that indexical attitudes are essential for action, it suffices that there could be even one successful impersonal action rationalization. In what follows we bolster our case against an essential connection between action and the de se (or indexicality), first by developing a range of new action models and secondly by responding to challenges from Dilip Ninan, Stephan Torre, and José Luis Bermúdez .

Author Profiles

Joshua Dever
University of Texas at Austin
Herman Cappelen
University of Hong Kong


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