Is Belief a Propositional Attitude?Skip other details (including permanent urls, DOI, citation information)
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License. Please contact email@example.com to use this work in a way not covered by the license. :
For more information, read Michigan Publishing's access and usage policy.
According to proponents of the face-value account, a belief report of the form ‘S believes that p’ is true just in case the agent believes a proposition referred to by the that-clause. As against this familiar view, I argue that there are cases of true belief reports of the relevant form in which there is no proposition that the that-clause, or the speaker using the that-clause, can plausibly be taken as referring to. Moreover, I argue that given the distinctive way in which the face-value theory of belief-reports fails, there is pressure to give up the metaphysical thesis that belief is a propositional attitude. I conclude by suggesting that we allow non-propositional entities to be amongst the relata of the belief-relation, and make some speculative remarks concerning what such entities might be like.