Keck Undergraduate Humanities Research Fellows


Sara BadraniFollow

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 5-14-2021


Other Philosophy

Description, Abstract, or Artist's Statement

While there are several competing theories of motivation, the exact nature of motivation and how it has been used to make impactful changes in history has not been well studied. It is apparent there have been various attempts to determine the exact nature of motivation; however, upon further analysis, there seems to be inapplicable flaws in these arguments. As a result, this leads to various dissatisfying theories of motivation that are unable to clearly answer the exact nature of motivation. Looking at both Humean and anti- Humean theories, my research hypothesis will essentially identify the inaccuracy of both arguments. As a result, I will offer my own definition of motivation and illustrate why it’s the most accurate. Furthermore, in order to clearly establish the accuracy of my theory of motivation, I will look at historical moments in time. I will then apply all three theories (my own, Humean, and anti- Humean) and provide further analysis as to why my theory reigns supreme. Due to history’s repetitive nature, determining the motivational role in historical events will allow us to apply that same reasoning to current and future events. If we are able to understand the nature and function of motivation in the past, we can then determine how best to influence individuals to act in a manner that promotes the greater good.