Allen, SR (2018) Kind Behaving Badly: Intentional Action and Interactive Kinds. Synthese, 198 (12). pp. 2927-2956. ISSN 0039-7857

[thumbnail of Kinds Behaving Badly - 7-18 Submitted version.pdf]
Kinds Behaving Badly - 7-18 Submitted version.pdf - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial.

Download (226kB) | Preview


This paper investigates interactive kinds, a class of kinds suggested by Ian Hacking for which classification generates a feedback loop between the classifiers and what is classified, and argues that human interactive kinds should be distinguished from non-human ones. First, I challenge the claim that there is nothing ontologically special about interactive kinds in virtue of their members being classified as such. To do so, I reject Cooper’s counterexample to Hacking’s thesis that kind descriptions are necessary for intentional action, arguing that classification (although not necessarily linguistic description) is required for intentional action. Having considered ways to characterise the metaphysics of interactive kinds and the semantics of kind terms, I argue that the fact that classification facilitates intentional action makes human interactive kinds ontologically distinctive because of the anomalous nature of the change which the kind-classification brings about. I then briefly examine further distinguishing features of human interactive kinds.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is the accepted author manuscript (AAM). The final published version (version of record) is available online via Springer at - please refer to any applicable terms of use of the publisher.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Interactive kinds; Natural kinds; Intentional action; Homeostatic property clusters; Psychiatric kinds; Social ontology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Politics, Philosophy, International Relations and Environment
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 20 Aug 2018 14:12
Last Modified: 02 Sep 2021 13:26

Actions (login required)

View Item
View Item