Philosophical Studies 179 (2):615-631 (2021)

Authors
Matthew Vermaire
University of Texas at Austin
Abstract
Doxastic involuntarists, as I categorize them, say that it’s impossible to form a belief as an intentional action. But what exactly is it to form a belief, as opposed to simply getting yourself to have one? This question has been insufficiently addressed, and the lacuna threatens the involuntarists’ position: if the question isn’t answered, their view will lack any clear content; but, after considering some straightforward ways of answering it, I argue that they would make involuntarism either false or insignificant. I also examine several involuntarist arguments, and find them faltering at just this point: inadequate attention to belief-formation results in unsound arguments or insignificant conclusions. The viability of involuntarism as a meaningful position, I conclude, turns on whether the notion of belief-formation can be further developed.
Keywords doxastic voluntarism  intention  believing at will  belief-formation
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Reprint years 2022
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DOI 10.1007/s11098-021-01673-6
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References found in this work BETA

Intention.G. E. M. Anscombe - 1957 - Harvard University Press.
Doxastic Deliberation.Nishi Shah & J. David Velleman - 2005 - Philosophical Review 114 (4):497-534.
Intention.G. E. M. Anscombe - 1957 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 57:321-332.
Deciding to Believe.Bernard Williams - 1973 - In Problems of the Self. Cambridge University Press. pp. 136--51.

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