Concepts and Action. Know-how and Beyond

In Christoph Demmerling & Dirk Schröder (eds.), Concepts in Thought, Action, and Emotion. New Essays. London, Ontario, Kanada: Routledge. pp. 181-198 (2020)
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Which role do concepts play in a person's actions? Do concepts underwrite the very idea of agency in somebody's acting? Or is the appeal to concepts in action a problematic form of over-intellectualization which obstructs a proper picture of genuine agency? Within the large and complicated terrain of these questions, the debate about know-how has been of special interest in recent years. In this paper, I shall try to spell out what know-how can tell us about the role of concepts in action. I will argue that the fact that people possess and exercise know-how is indeed suited to deliver a number of important insights as to where and how concepts play a role in action. But I shall argue that these insights are limited in that they fail to cover the whole realm of relevant phenomena.

Author's Profile

David Löwenstein
Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf


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