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Intentionality

Intentionality is used somewhat differently by different communities. It is basically a philosophical term for “aboutness,” that is, that mental activity is directed toward something, for example, wanting or being happy about something. It originates in the medieval scholastic tradition, but was revived by Franz Brentano, who claimed that intentionality is a prerequisite for all consciousness, that is, that we are always conscious about something or have an intention toward something. The object of intentionality does not have to exist outside the mind of the person having the intention. The interpretation of this suggestion is subject to dispute among philosophers.

There is also the more everyday sense of intentionality as having an intention, which is found in many texts relating to communication disorders. This sense ...

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