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By John and Helen Steward, editors Hyman

This choice of unique essays by way of top philosophers covers the total diversity of the philosophy of motion.

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Extra info for Agency and Action (Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement; 55)

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1. Some varieties of the non-observational A—The first and in some ways still most oft-cited example Anscombe gives of what she means by 'non-observational knowledge' is the awareness a person normally has of his basic bodily position: "A man usually knows the position of his limbs without observation. " (p. 13) Certain aspects of this idea have been contested, of course, but it seems undeniable that a person does have an awareness of his 44 Anscombe on 'Practical Knowledge' bodily position and bodily movements which is different from the knowledge he may have of another person's position and movements by watching what they do.

I further argued that the explanations of action that we give when we specify the agent's reasons for acting—sometimes called rational or rationalizing explanations—are unusual in being non-factive. What this means is that for the explanation to be correct as an explanation, it is not required that what is offered as explanans in fact be the case. When we give the agent's reasons for doing what he did, the sort of light that is thereby cast on his actions does not seem in any way to require that things should actually have been as he took them to be.

In practice of course what I write will very likely not go on being very legible if I don't use my eyes; but isn't the role of all our observation-knowledge in knowing what we are doing like the role of the eyes in producing successful writing? That is to say, once given that we have knowledge or opinion about that matter in which we perform intentional actions, our observation is merely an aid, as the eyes are an aid in writing, (p. 53) How is it possible for the knowledge of what one is writing to be non-observational?

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