Date of Degree

5-2019

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph.D.

Program

Philosophy

Advisor

Carol Gould

Committee Members

David Velleman

Jesse Prinz

John Greenwood

Subject Categories

Philosophy

Keywords

collective action, collective intention, experimental philosophy, higher-order interdependence

Abstract

This dissertation defends the higher-order interdependence theory of collective intention. I introduce three results from experimental research on judgments about acting together with others in the sense of collaboration or partnership, which give a description of the character of our collective actions. Building from the literature, I assume that collective action is explained by collective intention. I then show how current theories of collective intention have difficulties explaining these results and develop a theory that gives a better explanation. This theory of collective intention also contains a novel account of the source of interpersonal normativity in collective action. People who form a collective intention owe each other something and are accountable to one another because they choose to co-determine their action in an obligation-generating way.

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