Attitudinal Objects and the Distinction between Actions and Products

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This paper explores a notion of a truth-bearing entity that is distinct both from a proposition and from an intentional event, state, or action, namely the notion of an attitudinal object. Attitudinal objects are entities like ‘John’s belief that S’, John’s claim that S’, ‘John’s desire that S’, or ‘John’s request that S’. The notion of an attitudinal object has an important precedent in the work of the Polish philosopher Twardowski (1912), who drew a more general distinction between ‘actions’ and ‘products’, such as screaming, judging, and thinking on the one hand and a scream, a judgment, and a thought on the other hand. The paper argue that the action-product distinction is the distinction between actions and the abstract or physically realized artifacts that they may create.
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