Human agency has four irreducibly different dimensions — psychological, ethical, intellectual, and physical — which the traditional idea of a will tended to conflate. Twentieth-century philosophers criticized the idea that acts are caused by 'willing' or 'volition', but the study of human action continued to be governed by a tendency to equate these dimensions of agency, or to reduce one to another. Cutting across the branches of philosophy, from logic and epistemology to ethics and jurisprudence, Action, Knowledge, and Will defends comprehensive theories of action and knowledge, and shows how thinking about agency in four dimensions deepens our understanding of human conduct and its causes.
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Reviews of Action, Knowledge, and Will
“With this book, John Hyman has done more for action theory than anyone in the field since Anscombe. … [He] presents a new picture that, in time, will change the way everyone thinks about human action.” (Jurisprudence)
“The most important treatment of action since Anscombe and Davidson.” (Philosophical Quarterly)
“This rich, delightful book … reaches fresh, insightful conclusions about human action and thought.” (TLS)
“Il s’agit d’une philosophie de l’action qui sera considérée comme un véritable canon.” (Philosophiques)
“John Hyman’s new book is a masterful blend of the philosophy of action and epistemology. … an invitation to a radical new research programme in epistemology.” (Analysis)
“John Hyman weaves strands of historical, legal, empirical, and conceptual analysis into a series of arguments that are fresh and exciting at every turn.” (Australasian Journal of Philosophy)
“Philosophy is all about fine distinctions. Here they are made acutely yet accessibly to give us a new picture of who we are.” (The Tablet, Books of the Year)