Practical and Theoretical Rationality: A Comparative Study

[RG # 128] Practical and Theoretical Rationality: A Comparative Study

Organizer:

Ruth Weintraub (Tel-Aviv University)

Theoretical and practical rationality are concerned with reasons, and aim to respond to normative questions: "What ought one to believe?" and "What should one do?". Theoretical rationality answers its questions by assessing and weighing reasons for beliefe and the (internal) relations among the beliefs. Arguably, theoretical reason aims at the truth of propositions. Accordingly, reasons for belief are considerations that speak in favour of propositions being worthy of acceptance insofar as one's aim in belief is the truth.

The reasons which practical rationality invokes are considerations that speak in favour of performing particular actions or adopting particular intentions and ends. And the internal relationships it appeals to are thos between means and ends on the one hand, and intentions and actions on the other.

Philosophers have always studied theoretical and practical rationality, and both topics continue to present vexing and philosophically significant questions. Many suggestive comparisons and distinctions between the two can be found in the philosophical literature. However, these insights are usually random and piecemeal; a sustained study of the relationships and differences between the two kinds of rationality is rarely conducted. Our aim is to study the similarities and differences between the two areas in a systematic way, so as to apply insights gleaned from one realm to the other, and gain a better understanding of the relationship between them and of the nature of reason in general.

 

 

Members

men

David Enoch

FELLOW
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
David is a professor in the Department of Philosophy and Faculty of Law at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
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Yuval Eylon

FELLOW
The Open University of Israel
Yuval is a professor in the Departments of History, Philosophy, and Judaic Studies at the Open University of Israel.
men

James Pryor

FELLOW
New York University
James is a professor in the Department of Philosophy at New York University, USA. His research interests are epistemology and philosophy of language.

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