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Explaining Beliefs cover

Explaining Beliefs

Lynne Rudder Baker and Her Critics

edited by Anthonie Meijers

The philosophy of mind has long been dominated by the view that mental states are identical with, constituted by, or grounded in brain states. Lynne Rudder Baker has been a persistent critic of this view. She defends an alternative account based on the idea of mental states as attitudes of persons, which are manifest in what they say, think or do. Her theory of mental states is part of a larger metaphysical outlook called Practical Realism. This volume is the first critical book-length evaluation of her views and criticism; leading philosophers answer her challenges and explore the consequences of Practical Realism, and Baker herself provides thoughtful replies to elaborate her own position.

Anthonie Meijers is a professor of philosophy at Eindhoven University of Technology.


  • Preface and Acknowledgments v
  • Contributors vii
  • 1 Introduction 1 Jan Bransen and Anthonie Meijers
  • 2 Are Beliefs Brain States? 1 Lynne Rudder Baker
  • 3 Where is the Mind? 2 Fred Dretske
  • 4 The Real Reason for the Standard View 3 Ansgar Beckermann
  • 5 Brain States, With Attitude 3 Louise Antony
  • 6 Brains with an Attitude 4 Reinaldo Elugardo
  • 7 The Causal Powers of Belief A Critique of Practical Realism 4 Theo Meyering
  • 8 Contextual Realism: the Context-dependency and the Relational Character of Beliefs 4 Albert Newen
  • 9 Collective Believe and Practical Realism 4 Anthonie Meijers
  • 10 Practical Realism Defended: Replies to Critics 6 Lynne Rudder Baker
  • Bibliography 7


ISBN (Paperback): 1575863502 (9781575863504)
ISBN (Cloth): 1575863510 (9781575863511)

Subject: Lynne Rudder Baker; Belief and doubt; Philosophy of mind

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