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Joint Action without Mindreading

by Stephen A. Butterfill

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Joint action is a familiar feature of everyday life. Paradigmatic joint actions include things like painting a house together, walking together and playing a piano duet. On leading accounts of joint action, engaging in joint action presupposes mindreading abilities. But are there forms of joint action engaging in which would not require mindreading? In this talk I aim to identify interagential structures of motor representation that play a role in coordinating some joint actions, and to argue that this role is parallel to one played by shared intention. The parallel indicates that we can give a theoretically coherent and empirically motivated account of a form of joint action that does not require mindreading. This removes an obstacle to holding that abilities to engage in joint action partly explain the emergence, in evolution or development, of mindreading.