Mark B. Okrent
Ph.D., M. Phil., Yale; B.A., Reed College
In virtue of having which kind of property does a state, event, or act count as being about or directed towards something? Is being about something an intrinsic property of an individual event, state, or act, or is it a relational property? If the later, does it involve a relation between the individual with the intentional character and what it is about or directed towards, or a relation between or among that individual and some other entities? What is the importance and role of the agent of the intentional act or the subject of the intentional mental state? Is the directional character of overt action derivative from the intentional character of the mental events (e.g., the beliefs and desires) which explain those acts, or does the intentional character of those mental events derive from the relation between those events and the teleological character of the actions which they help to explain? In working on these issues Professor Okrent tends to derive insights from two sources, the pragmatic tradition in American philosophy that he sees culminating, (after assimilating the techniques of classical analytic philosophy), in the work of Donald Davidson, and the German transcendental tradition, that he sees culminating in the early work of Martin Heidegger.