Questions in Action

Journal of Philosophy 119 (3):113-143 (2022)
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Abstract

Choices confront us with questions. How we act depends on our answers to those questions. So the way our beliefs guide our choices is not just a function of their informational content, but also depends systematically on the questions those beliefs address. This paper gives a precise account of the interplay between choices, questions and beliefs, and harnesses this account to obtain a principled approach to the problem of deduction. The result is a novel theory of belief-guided action that explains and predicts the decisions of agents who, like ourselves, fail to be logically omniscient: that is, of agents whose beliefs may not be deductively closed, or even consistent. (Winner of the 2021 Isaac Levi Prize.)

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Daniel Hoek
Virginia Tech

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