Agent, action and agent’s awareness. A conceptual clari cation of our experience

Luca Casartelli


In this paper I propose two genuine philosophical approaches to action and I compare the different positions about this topic. I attempt to show that Heidegger’s elaboration about the “worldlessness of world”, about “poverty in world of animal” and about the “world-formation of Dasein” can bring to mind Gallagher&Zahavi’s distinction about “oriented-towards-something movements”, “action”, and “action with sense of agency”. In this sense I try to reflect about act, action, agent and about the agent’s awareness to be an agent towards a phenomenology of action, towards a phenomenological clarification of our experience. In the first part I propose some philosophical elements about phenomenology of action showing how it is difficult to identify two or more experiences “as the same experiences”. In the second part I recall very briefly the main line of Gallagher&Zahavi perspective that we can find principally in “The Phenomenological Mind” where they try to explain the different aspects of movement and action proposing some reflections about agency. In the third part I expose Heidegger’s position that we can find in the “The Fundamental Concepts of Metaphysics”. In the fourth part, I present the synergetic attempt of comparison between Heidegger thought and Gallagher&Zahavi perspective.


phenomenology of action; agency; Heidegger; Gallagher; Zahavi

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