Philosophy of the Social Sciences 32 (1):25-50 (2002)

Authors
Deborah Tollefsen
University of Memphis
Abstract
In everyday discourse and in the context of social scientific research we often attribute intentional states to groups. Contemporary approaches to group intentionality have either dismissed these attributions as metaphorical or provided an analysis of our attributions in terms of the intentional states of individuals in the group.Insection1, the author argues that these approaches are problematic. In sections 2 and 3, the author defends the view that certain groups are literally intentional agents. In section 4, the author argues that there are significant reasons for social scientists and philosophers of social science to acknowledge the adequacy of macro-level explanations that involve the attribution of intentional states to groups. In section 5, the author considers and responds to some criticisms of the thesis she defends.
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DOI 10.1177/004839310203200102
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References found in this work BETA

Actions, Reasons, and Causes.Donald Davidson - 1963 - Journal of Philosophy 60 (23):685.
Mental Events.Donald Davidson - 1970 - In L. Foster & J. W. Swanson (eds.). Clarendon Press. pp. 207-224.
Real Patterns.Daniel C. Dennett - 1991 - Journal of Philosophy 88 (1):27-51.

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Citations of this work BETA

Group Agency and Artificial Intelligence.Christian List - 2021 - Philosophy and Technology (4):1-30.
Plural Self-Awareness.Hans Bernhard Schmid - 2014 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 13 (1):7-24.
Joint Actions and Group Agents.Philip Pettit & David Schweikard - 2006 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 36 (1):18-39.

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