Ideas from 'Brainstorms:Essays on Mind and Psychology' by Daniel C. Dennett [1978], by Theme Structure

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15. Nature of Minds / B. Features of Minds / 4. Intentionality / b. Intentionality theories
Theories of intentionality presuppose rationality, so can't explain it
                        Full Idea: Intentional theory is vacuous as psychology because it presupposes and does not explain rationality or intelligence.
                        From: Daniel C. Dennett (Brainstorms:Essays on Mind and Psychology [1978], p.15?)
                        A reaction: Virtually every philosophical theory seems to founder because it presupposes something like the thing it is meant to explain. I agree that 'intentionality' is a slightly airy concept that would probably reduce to something better.
17. Mind and Body / B. Behaviourism / 3. Intentional Stance
Beliefs and desires aren't real; they are prediction techniques
                        Full Idea: Intentional systems don't really have beliefs and desires, but one can explain and predict their behaviour by ascribing beliefs and desires to them. This strategy is pragmatic, not right or wrong.
                        From: Daniel C. Dennett (Brainstorms:Essays on Mind and Psychology [1978], p.7?)
                        A reaction: If the ascription of beliefs and desires explains behaviour, then that is good grounds for thinking they might be real features of the brain, and even if that is not so, they are real enough as abstractions from brain events, like the 'economic climate'.