Going ballistic: The dynamics of the imagination and the issue of intentionalism




mental ballistics
mental dynamics

How to Cite

Morales Carbonell, F. (2024). Going ballistic: The dynamics of the imagination and the issue of intentionalism. Philosophy and the Mind Sciences, 5. https://doi.org/10.33735/phimisci.2024.10257


Do we have control over the content of our imaginings? More precisely: do we have control over what our imaginings are about? Intentionalists say yes. Until recently, intentionalism could be taken as the received view. Recently, authors like Munro & Strohminger (2021) have developed some arguments against it. Here, I tentatively join their ranks and develop a new way to think about the way in which imaginings develop their contents that also goes against intentionalism. My proposal makes use of what we may call a ballistic framework for mental dynamics, which I sketch to some length. In this model, imaginings are articulated by ballistic events sensitive to constraints that modify the trajectories that imaginings trace in a special working space. This framework leaves room for alternatives to pre-assigned-content models, such as Kung’s (2016). In the ballistic-based models sketched here, and against intentionalism, imaginings can fail to be about what we intend them to be about. The framework also has applications beyond the intentionalism debate, some of which I will sketch.



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