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  1. Habitual Actions, Propositional Knowledge, Motor Representations and Intentionality.Gabriele Ferretti & Silvano Zipoli Caiani - 2021 - Topoi 40 (3):623-635.
    Habitual actions have a history of practice and repetition that frees us from attending to what we are doing. Nevertheless, habitual actions seem to be intentional. What does account for the intentionality of habitual actions if they are automatically performed and controlled? In this paper, we address a possible response to a particular version of this issue, that is, the problem of understanding how the intention to execute a habitual action, which comes in a propositional format, interlocks with motor representations, (...)
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  • The skill of self-control.Juan Pablo Bermúdez - 2021 - Synthese 199 (3-4):6251-6273.
    Researchers often claim that self-control is a skill. It is also often stated that self-control exertions are intentional actions. However, no account has yet been proposed of the skillful agency that makes self-control exertion possible, so our understanding of self-control remains incomplete. Here I propose the skill model of self-control, which accounts for skillful agency by tackling the guidance problem: how can agents transform their abstract and coarse-grained intentions into the highly context-sensitive, fine-grained control processes required to select, revise and (...)
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  • Weighing in on decisions in the brain: neural representations of pre-awareness practical intention.Robyn Repko Waller - 2021 - Synthese 199 (1-2):5175-5203.
    Neuroscientists have located brain activity that prepares or encodes action plans before agents are aware of intending to act. On the basis of these findings and broader agency research, activity in these regions has been proposed as the neural realizers of practical intention. My aim in this paper is to evaluate the case for taking these neural states to be neural representations of intention. I draw on work in philosophy of action on the role and nature of practical intentions to (...)
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  • Implicit biases in visually guided action.Berit Brogaard - 2021 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 17):S3943–S3967.
    For almost half a century dual-stream advocates have vigorously defended the view that there are two functionally specialized cortical streams of visual processing originating in the primary visual cortex: a ventral, perception-related ‘conscious’ stream and a dorsal, action-related ‘unconscious’ stream. They furthermore maintain that the perceptual and memory systems in the ventral stream are relatively shielded from the action system in the dorsal stream. In recent years, this view has come under scrutiny. Evidence points to two overlapping action pathways: a (...)
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  • The modularity of the motor system.Myrto Mylopoulos - 2021 - Philosophical Explorations 24 (3):376-393.
    In this paper, I make a case for the modularity of the motor system. I start where many do in discussions of modularity, by considering the extent to which the motor system is cognitively penetrable, i.e., the extent to which its processing and outputs are causally influenced, in a semantically coherent way, by states of central cognition. I present some empirical findings from a range of sensorimotor adaptation studies that strongly suggest that there are limits to such influence under certain (...)
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  • Wax On, Wax Off! Habits, Sport Skills, and Motor Intentionality.Massimiliano Lorenzo Cappuccio, Katsunori Miyahara & Jesús Ilundáin-Agurruza - 2021 - Topoi 40 (3):609-622.
    What role does habit formation play in the development of sport skills? We argue that motor habits are both necessary for and constitutive of sensorimotor skill as they support an automatic, yet inherently intelligent and flexible, form of action control. Intellectualists about skills generally assume that what makes action intelligent and flexible is its intentionality, and that intentionality must be necessarily cognitive in nature to allow for both deliberation and explicit goal-representation. Against Intellectualism we argue that the habitual behaviours that (...)
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  • Skilled Guidance.Denis Buehler - 2021 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 12 (3):641-667.
    Skilled action typically requires that individuals guide their activities toward some goal. In skilled action, individuals do so excellently. We do not understand well what this capacity to guide consists in. In this paper I provide a case study of how individuals shift visual attention. Their capacity to guide visual attention toward some goal (partly) consists in an empirically discovered sub-system – the executive system. I argue that we can explain how individuals guide by appealing to the operation of this (...)
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  • Cognising With Others in the We-Mode: a Defence of ‘First-Person Plural’ Social Cognition.Joe Higgins - 2021 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 12 (4):803-824.
    The theory of we-mode cognition seeks to expand our understanding of the cognition involved in joint action, and therein claims to explain how we can have non-theoretical and non-simulative access to the minds of others (Gallotti and Frith Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 17: 160-165, 2013a, Gallotti and Frith Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 17: 304-305, 2013b). A basic tenet of this theory is that each individual jointly intends to accomplish some outcome together, requiring the adoption of a “first-person plural perspective” (Gallotti (...)
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  • Are visuomotor representations cognitively penetrable? Biasing action-guiding vision.Josefa Toribio - 2018 - Synthese (Suppl 17):1-19.
    Is action-guiding vision cognitively penetrable? More specifically, is the visual processing that guides our goal-directed actions sensitive to semantic information from cognitive states? This paper critically examines a recent family of arguments whose aim is to challenge a widespread and influential view in philosophy and cognitive science: the view that action-guiding vision is cognitively impenetrable. I argue, in response, that while there may very well be top–down causal influences on action-guiding vision, they should not be taken to be an instance (...)
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  • Unconscious perception and central coordinating agency.Joshua Shepherd & Myrto Mylopoulos - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 178 (12):3869-3893.
    One necessary condition on any adequate account of perception is clarity regarding whether unconscious perception exists. The issue is complicated, and the debate is growing in both philosophy and science. In this paper we consider the case for unconscious perception, offering three primary achievements. First, we offer a discussion of the underspecified notion of central coordinating agency, a notion that is critical for arguments that purportedly perceptual states are not attributable to the individual, and thus not genuinely perceptual. We develop (...)
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  • The Anxious Mind: An Investigation into the Varieties and Virtues of Anxiety, by Charlie Kurth. [REVIEW]Joshua Shepherd - 2019 - Mind 128 (512):1337-1344.
  • Intelligent action guidance and the use of mixed representational formats.Joshua Shepherd - 2021 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 17):4143-4162.
    My topic is the intelligent guidance of action. In this paper I offer an empirically grounded case for four ideas: that [a] cognitive processes of practical reasoning play a key role in the intelligent guidance of action, [b] these processes could not do so without significant enabling work done by both perception and the motor system, [c] the work done by perceptual and motor systems can be characterized as the generation of information specialized for action guidance, which in turn suggests (...)
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  • Concepts and predication from perception to cognition.Jake Quilty-Dunn - 2020 - Philosophical Issues 30 (1):273-292.
    Philosophical Issues, Volume 30, Issue 1, Page 273-292, October 2020.
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  • Beyond Automaticity: The Psychological Complexity of Skill.Elisabeth Pacherie & Myrto Mylopoulos - 2020 - Topoi 40 (3):649-662.
    The objective of this paper is to characterize the rich interplay between automatic and cognitive control processes that we propose is the hallmark of skill, in contrast to habit, and what accounts for its flexibility. We argue that this interplay isn't entirely hierarchical and static, but rather heterarchical and dynamic. We further argue that it crucially depends on the acquisition of detailed and well-structured action representations and internal models, as well as the concomitant development of metacontrol processes that can be (...)
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  • Editorial: “Skilled Action Control”.Myrto Mylopoulos & Elisabeth Pacherie - 2021 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 12 (3):469-480.
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  • Oops! I Did it Again: The Psychology of Everyday Action Slips.Myrto Mylopoulos - 2022 - Topics in Cognitive Science 14 (2):282-294.
  • The two visual systems hypothesis and contrastive underdetermination.Thor Grünbaum - 2021 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 17):4045-4068.
    This paper concerns local yet systematic problems of contrastive underdetermination of model choice in cognitive neuroscience debates about the so-called two visual systems hypothesis. The underdetermination problem is systematically generated by the way certain assumptions about the representationalist nature of computation are translated into experimental practice. The problem is that behavioural data underdetermine the choice between competing representational models. In this paper, I diagnose how these assumptions generate underdetermination problems in the choice between competing functional models of perception–action. Using the (...)
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  • Skill and strategic control.Ellen Fridland - 2021 - Synthese 199 (3-4):5937-5964.
    This paper provides an account of the strategic control involved in skilled action. When I discuss strategic control, I have in mind the practical goals, plans, and strategies that skilled agents use in order to specify, structure, and organize their skilled actions, which they have learned through practice. The idea is that skilled agents are better than novices not only at implementing the intentions that they have but also at forming the right intentions. More specifically, skilled agents are able formulate (...)
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  • Intention at the Interface.Ellen Fridland - 2021 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 12 (3):481-505.
    I identify and characterize the kind of personal-level control-structure that is most relevant for skilled action control, namely, what I call, “practical intention”. I differentiate between practical intentions and general intentions not in terms of their function or timing but in terms of their content. I also highlight a distinction between practical intentions and other control mechanisms that are required to explain skilled action. I’ll maintain that all intentions, general and practical, have the function specifying, sustaining, and structuring action but (...)
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  • Visual phenomenology versus visuomotor imagery: How can we be aware of action properties?Gabriele Ferretti - 2019 - Synthese 198 (4):3309-3338.
    Here is a crucial question in the contemporary philosophy of perception: how can we be aware of action properties? According to the perceptual view, we consciously see them: they are present in our visual phenomenology. However, this view faces some problems. First, I review these problems. Then, I propose an alternative view, according to which we are aware of action properties because we imagine them through a special form of imagery, which I call visuomotor imagery. My account is to be (...)
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  • Solving the Interface Problem Without Translation: The Same Format Thesis.Gabriele Ferretti & Silvano Zipoli Caiani - 2019 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 100 (1):301-333.
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  • Between vision and action: introduction to the special issue.Gabriele Ferretti & Silvano Zipoli Caiani - 2019 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 17):3899-3911.
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  • Anti-intellectualist motor knowledge.Gabriele Ferretti - 2020 - Synthese 198 (11):10733-10763.
    Intellectualists suggest that practical knowledge, or ‘knowing- how’, can be reduced to propositional knowledge, or ‘knowing-that’. Anti-intellectualists, on the contrary, suggest, following the original insights by Ryle, that such a reduction is not possible. Rejection of intellectualism can be proposed either by offering purely philosophical analytical arguments, or by recruiting empirical evidence from cognitive science about the nature of the mental representations involved in these two forms of knowledge. In this paper, I couple these two strategies in order to analyze (...)
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  • A distinction concerning vision-for-action and affordance perception.Gabriele Ferretti - 2021 - Consciousness and Cognition 87:103028.
  • The Skill of Translating Thought into Action: Framing The Problem.Wayne Christensen - 2020 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology (3):547-573.
    The nature of the cognition-motor interface has been brought to prominence by Butterfill & Sinigaglia, who argue that the representations employed by the cognitive and motor systems should not be able to interact with each other. Here I argue that recent empirical evidence concerning the interface contradicts several of the assumptions incorporated in Butterfill & Sinigaglia’s account, and I seek to develop a theoretical picture that will allow us to explain the structure of the interface presented by this evidence. The (...)
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  • The Skill of Translating Thought into Action: Framing The Problem.Wayne Christensen - 2021 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 12 (3):547-573.
    The nature of the cognition-motor interface has been brought to prominence by Butterfill & Sinigaglia, who argue that the representations employed by the cognitive and motor systems should not be able to interact with each other. Here I argue that recent empirical evidence concerning the interface contradicts several of the assumptions incorporated in Butterfill & Sinigaglia’s account, and I seek to develop a theoretical picture that will allow us to explain the structure of the interface presented by this evidence. The (...)
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  • Cognitive control, intentions, and problem solving in skill learning.Wayne Christensen & Kath Bicknell - 2022 - Synthese 200 (6):1-36.
    We investigate flexibility and problem solving in skilled action. We conducted a field study of mountain bike riding that required a learner rider to cope with major changes in technique and equipment. Our results indicate that relatively inexperienced individuals can be capable of fairly complex 'on-the-fly' problem solving which allows them to cope with new conditions. This problem solving is hard to explain for classical theories of skill because the adjustments are too large to be achieved by automatic mechanisms and (...)
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  • Fodor on imagistic mental representations.Daniel C. Burnston - 2020 - Rivista Internazionale di Filosofia e Psicologia 11 (1):71-94.
    : Fodor’s view of the mind is thoroughly computational. This means that the basic kind of mental entity is a “discursive” mental representation and operations over this kind of mental representation have broad architectural scope, extending out to the edges of perception and the motor system. However, in multiple epochs of his work, Fodor attempted to define a functional role for non-discursive, imagistic representation. I describe and critique his two considered proposals. The first view says that images play a particular (...)
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  • Against the distinction between intentions for the future and intentions for the present.Chiara Brozzo - 2021 - American Philosophical Quarterly 58 (4):333-346.
    How should we account for the planning and performance of a bodily action in terms of the agent’s intentions? An influential answer invokes two distinct kinds of intention: intentions for the future, responsible for action planning, and intentions for the present, responsible for action performance. I argue that there is something wrong with this influential answer: the notion of intention for the present is either superfluous or ambiguous. Developing this criticism will lead to an alternative account of action planning and (...)
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  • A Role for Conscious Accessibility in Skilled Action.Chiara Brozzo - 2021 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 12 (3):683-697.
    Skilled sportsmen or musicians—more generally, skilled agents—often fill us with awe with the way they perform their actions. One question we may ask ourselves is whether they intended to perform some awe-inspiring aspects of their actions. This question becomes all the more pressing as it often turns out that these agents were not conscious of some of those aspects at the time of performance. As I shall argue, there are reasons for suspecting lack of conscious access to an aspect of (...)
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  • From Freedom From to Freedom To: New Perspectives on Intentional Action.Sofia Bonicalzi & Patrick Haggard - 2019 - Frontiers in Psychology 10.
    There are few concepts as relevant as that of intentional action in shaping our sense of self and the interaction with the environment. At the same time, few concepts are so elusive. Indeed, both conceptual and neuroscientific accounts of intentional agency have proven to be problematic. On the one hand, most conceptual views struggle in defining how agents can adequately exert control over their actions. On the other hand, neuroscience settles for definitions by exclusion whereby key features of human intentional (...)
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  • The Standard Story of Action and the Problem of Agential Guidance.Jesús H. Aguilar - 2020 - Critica 52 (155).
    The problem of agential guidance consists in explaining the possibility of guiding an action in purely reductive causal terms. After examining Harry Frankfurt’s articulation of this problem, the standard systemic reductive causal answer is explored and found wanting. Two general explanatory challenges are singled out as decisive in assessing the viability of a causal answer to the problem of agential guidance: first, the correct identification of the actual sources of action guidance in the form of guiding intentions, and, second, the (...)
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  • Intentions: The Dynamic Hierarchical Model Revisited.Elisabeth Pacherie & Myrto Mylopoulos - 2019 - WIREs Cognitive Science 10 (2):e1481.
    Ten years ago, one of us proposed a dynamic hierarchical model of intentions that brought together philosophical work on intentions and empirical work on motor representations and motor control (Pacherie, 2008). The model distinguished among Distal intentions, Proximal intentions, and Motor intentions operating at different levels of action control (hence the name DPM model). This model specified the representational and functional profiles of each type of intention, as well their local and global dynamics, and the ways in which they interact. (...)
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  • What Is Minimally Cooperative Behavior?Kirk Ludwig - 2020 - In Anika Fiebich (ed.), Minimal Cooperation and Shared Agency. Cham, Switzerland: Springer. pp. 9-40.
    Cooperation admits of degrees. When factory workers stage a slowdown, they do not cease to cooperate with management in the production of goods altogether, but they are not fully cooperative either. Full cooperation implies that participants in a joint action are committed to rendering appropriate contributions as needed toward their joint end so as to bring it about, consistently with the type of action and the generally agreed upon constraints within which they work, as efficiently as they can, where their (...)
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  • Default Hypotheses in the Study of Perception: A Reply to Phillips.Jacob Berger & Myrto Mylopoulos - 2021 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 28 (3-4):206-219.
    Some theorists have recently raised doubts about much of the experimental evidence purporting to demonstrate the existence of unconscious perception. In our (2019) in this journal, we argued some of these considerations are not decisive. Phillips (forthcoming a) replies thoughtfully to our paper, concluding that he is unconvinced by our arguments. Phillips maintains that the view that perception is invariably conscious remains, as he puts it, the “default” hypothesis both within the folk understanding and experimental study of perception. There is (...)
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  • Against the Distinction between Intentions for the Future and Intentions for the Present.Chiara Brozzo - 2021 - American Philosophical Quarterly 4 (58):333-346.
    How should we account for the planning and performance of a bodily action in terms of the agent’s intentions? An influential answer invokes two distinct kinds of intention: intentions for the future (also known as prior intentions or distal intentions), responsible for action planning, and intentions for the present (also known as intentions in action or proximal intentions), responsible for action performance. I argue that there is something wrong with this influential answer: the notion of intention for the present is (...)
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  • Categorically Perceiving Motor Actions.Chiara Brozzo - 2020 - In Neural Mechanisms: New Challenges in Philosophy of Neuroscience. pp. 465-482.
    In this chapter, I will present an empirical conjecture to the effect that some bodily actions are categorically perceived. These are bodily actions such as grasping or reaching for something, which I am going to call motor actions. My conjecture builds on one recently put forward about how the categorical perception of facial expressions of some emotions works. I shall motivate my own conjecture on the basis of both theoretical and empirical considerations, describe how it could be operationalised and what (...)
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