Manifest Activity presents and critically examines the model of human power, the will, our capacities for purposeful conduct, and the place of our agency in the natural world of one of the most important and traditionally under-appreciated philosophers of the 18th century: Thomas Reid. The book examines Reid's arguments for this view and the view's implications for the nature of character, motivation and the special kind of causation involved in the production of human behavior.
"Probing, insightful...welcome... Yaffe's book is, in my estimation, excellent: it is deftly and concisely argued, resourceful, and offers a charitable interpretation of Reid's position... Manifest Activity is a book that should delight those interested in Reid's theory of action."--Notre Dame
Introduction: Teleoology and the Science of Action
1: From Power to Mind - An Argument from the Power to Exert
2: From Power to Mind - An Argument from the Power to do Otherwise
3: From Change to Power
4: From End-Directedness to Power
5: The Influence of Motives - The Push of Power?
6: The Influence of Motives - The Push of Law?
Conclusion: Agent-Causation and the Regress of Effort