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Lumer, Christoph (31. December 2011): The Volitive and the Executive Function of Intentions. XXII. Deutscher Kongress für Philosophie, 11. - 15. September 2011, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München.


Many philosophers of action conceive intentions functionally, as executive states: intentions are mental states that represent an action and tend to cause this action. In the philosophical tradition another function of intentions, which may be called "volitive", played a much more prominent role: intentions are mental states that represent what kind of actions we want and prefer to be realized and thus synthesize in a possibly rational way our motivational, desiderative and perhaps affective as well as cognitive attitudes towards this action. In the paper it is argued that intentions must fulfil both functions. Then a concept of ‘intention’ is developed that integrates both functions.