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Reasons, Misc

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  1. Maria Alvarez (2010). Reasons for Action and Practical Reasoning. Ratio 23 (4):355-373.
    This paper seeks a better understanding of the elements of practical reasoning: premises and conclusion. It argues that the premises of practical reasoning do not normally include statements such as ‘I want to ϕ’; that the reasoning in practical reasoning is the same as in theoretical reasoning and that what makes it practical is, first, that the point of the relevant reasoning is given by the goal that the reasoner seeks to realize by means of that reasoning and the subsequent (...)
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  2. Maria Alvarez (2009). How Many Kinds of Reasons? Philosophical Explorations 12 (2):181 – 193.
    Reasons can play a variety of roles in a variety of contexts. For instance, reasons can motivate and guide us in our actions (and omissions), in the sense that we often act in the light of reasons. And reasons can be grounds for beliefs, desires and emotions and can be used to evaluate, and sometimes to justify, all these. In addition, reasons are used in explanations: both in explanations of human actions, beliefs, desires, emotions, etc., and in explanations of a (...)
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  3. Maria Alvarez (2008). Reasons and the Ambiguity of 'Belief'. Philosophical Explorations 11 (1):53 – 65.
    Two conceptions of motivating reasons, i.e. the reasons for which we act, can be found in the literature: (1) the dominant 'psychological conception', which says that motivating reasons are an agent's believing something; and (2) the 'non-psychological' conception, the minority view, which says that they are what the agent believes, i.e. his beliefs. In this paper I outline a version of the minority view, and defend it against what have been thought to be insuperable difficulties - in particular, difficulties concerning (...)
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  4. Robert Audi (1986). Acting for Reasons. Philosophical Review 95 (4):511-546.
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  5. Jeff Behrends & Joshua DiPaolo (2011). Finlay and Schroeder on Promoting a Desire. Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy.
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  6. Selim Berker (2007). Particular Reasons. Ethics 118 (1):109-139.
    Moral particularists argue that because reasons for action are irreducibly context-dependent, the traditional quest in ethics for true and exceptionless moral principles is hopelessly misguided. In making this claim, particularists assume a general framework according to which reasons are the ground floor normative units undergirding all other normative properties and relations. They then argue that there is no cashing out in finite terms either (i) when a given non-normative feature gives rise to a reason for or against action, or (ii) (...)
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  7. Adam Biela (1993). Psychology of Analogical Inference. S. Hirzel.
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  8. Henk Bij de Weg, Reason and the Structure of Davidson's "Desire-Belief Model&Quot;.
    Abstract of “Reason and the structure of Davidson’s ‘Desire-Belief-Model’ ” by Henk bij de Weg -/- In the present discussion in the analytic theory of action, broadly two models for the explanation or justification of actions can be distinguished: the internalist and the externalist model. Against this background, I discuss Davidson’s version of the internalist Desire-Belief Model (DBM). First, I show that what Davidson calls “pro attitude” (a main element of his concept of reason) has two distinct meanings. An implication (...)
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  9. Simon Blackburn, A Short Note on Reasons.
    Reasons have recently occupied the centre of the theory of value. Some writers, such as Tim Scanlonthink that they are not only central, but exhaust the topic, since everything important that we want to say about the good or the valuable, or the obligatory and the required, can be phrased in terms of reason. An action is good to perform if the reasons in favour of performing it are stronger than those in favour of doing anything else or doing nothing. (...)
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  10. Michael Brady (ed.) (2011). New Waves in Metaethics. Palgrave Macmillan.
    Metaethics occupies a central place in analytical philosophy, and the last forty years has seen an upsurge of interest in questions about the nature and practice of morality. This collection presents original and ground-breaking research on metaethical issues from some of the very best of a new generation of philosophers working in this field.
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  11. Kimberley Brownlee (2010). Reasons and Ideals. Philosophical Studies 151 (3):433-444.
    This paper contributes to the debate on whether we can have reason to do what we are unable to do. I take as my starting point two papers recently published in Philosophical Studies , by Bart Streumer and Ulrike Heuer, which defend the two dominant opposing positions on this issue. Briefly, whereas Streumer argues that we cannot have reason to do what we are unable to do, Heuer argues that we can have reason to do what we are unable to (...)
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  12. John Brunero (2009). Reasons and Evidence One Ought. Ethics 119 (3):538-545.
  13. Ruth Chang (2009). Voluntarist Reasons and the Sources of Normativity. In David Sobel & Steven Wall (eds.), Reasons for Action. Cambridge University Press.
    In virtue of what does a consideration provide a practical reason? Suppose the fact that an experience is painful provides you with a reason to avoid it. In virtue of what does the fact that it’s painful have the normativity of a reason – where, in other words, does its normativity come from? As some philosophers put the question, what is the source of a reason’s normativity?
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  14. Ruth Chang (2002). The Possibility of Parity. Ethics 112 (4):659-688.
    This paper argues for the existence of a fourth positive generic value relation that can hold between two items beyond ‘better than’, ‘worse than’, and ‘equally good’: namely ‘on a par’.
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  15. Elliot D. Cohen (1984). Reason and Experience in Locke's Epistemology. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 45 (1):71-85.
  16. Arthur W. Collins (1997). The Psychological Reality of Reasons. Ratio 10 (2):108–123.
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  17. David Copp & David Sobel (2000). What We Owe to Each Other, T. M. Scanlon, the Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1998, IX + 420 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 16 (2):333-378.
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  18. Roger Crisp (2009). Goodness and Reasons: A Response to Stratton-Lake. Mind 118 (472):1095-1099.
    This article is a response to some of Philip Stratton-Lake’s criticisms of an earlier paper of mine in this journal, on the so-called ‘buck-passing’ account of goodness. Some elucidation is offered of the ‘wrong kind of reasons’ problem and of T. M. Scanlon’s view, and the question is raised of the role of goodness in the view outlined by Stratton-Lake.
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  19. Roger Crisp (2008). Goodness and Reasons: Accentuating the Negative. Mind 117 (466):257-265.
    This paper concerns the relation between goodness, or value, and practical reasons, and in particular the so-called ‘buck-passing’ account (BPA) of that relation recently offered by T. M. Scanlon, according to which goodness is not reason-providing but merely the higher-order property of possessing lower-order properties that provide reasons to respond in certain ways. The paper begins by briefly describing BPA and the motivation for it, noting that Scanlon now accepts that the lower-order properties in question may be evaluative. He also (...)
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  20. Roger Crisp (2007). Ethics Without Reasons? Journal of Moral Philosophy 4 (1):40-49.
    This paper is a discussion of Jonathan Dancy's book Ethics Without Principles (2004). Holism about reasons is distinguished into a weak version, which allows for invariant reasons, and a strong, which doesn't. Four problems with Dancy's arguments for strong holism are identified. (1) A plausible particularism based on it will be close to generalism. (2) Dancy rests his case on common-sense morality, without justifying it. (3) His examples are of non-ultimate reasons. (4) There are certain universal principles it is hard (...)
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  21. Martin Curd (1983). Some Inconclusive Reasons Against 'Conclusive Reasons'. Philosophy Research Archives 9:293-302.
    In, “Some Conclusive Reasons Against ‘Conclusive Reasons’”, Pappas and Swain have criticized Dretske’s theory that conclusive reasons are necessary for knowledge. In their view this condition is too strong. They attempt to show this by means of two purported counterexamples: the cup-hologram case and the generator case. This paper defends Dretske’s analysis against these challenges.
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  22. Stephen L. Darwall (2006). The Second-Person Standpoint: Morality, Respect, and Accountability. Harvard University Press.
    The result is nothing less than a fundamental reorientation of moral theory that enables it at last to account for morality's supreme authority--an account that ...
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  23. Stephen Davey (2013). How to Respond to the Problem of Deviant Formal Causation. Philosophia 41 (3):703-717.
    Recently, a new problem has arisen for an Anscombean conception of intentional action. The claim is that the Anscombean’s emphasis on the formally causal character of practical knowledge precludes distinguishing between an aim and a merely foreseen side effect. I propose a solution to this problem: the difference between aim and side effect should be understood in terms of the familiar Anscombean distinction between acting intentionally and the intention with which one acts. I also argue that this solution has advantages (...)
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  24. Christopher Essert (2012). A Dilemma for Protected Reasons. Law and Philosophy 31 (1):49-75.
    Joseph Raz’s account of norms provides that a norm requiring an agent to φ is a reason to φ protected by an exclusionary reason not to act on some other reasons. I present a dilemma concerning the determination of the contents of this set of excluded reasons. The question is whether or not the set includes reasons that count in favour of φing. If the answer is yes, the account is committed to a picture of norms that seems inconsistent with (...)
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  25. Daan Evers (2013). In Defence of Proportionalism. European Journal of Philosophy 21 (2).
    In his book Slaves of the Passions, Mark Schroeder defends a Humean theory of reasons. Humeanism is the view that you have a reason to X only if X-ing promotes at least one of your desires. But Schroeder rejects a natural companion theory of the weight of reasons, which he calls proportionalism. According to it, the weight of a reason is proportionate to the strength of the desire that grounds it and the extent to which the act promotes the object (...)
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  26. Daan Evers (2011). Two Objections to Wide-Scoping. Grazer Philosophische Studien 83 (13):251-255.
    Wide-scopers argue that the detachment of intuitively false ‘ought’ claims from hypothetical imperatives is blocked because ‘ought’ takes wide, as opposed to narrow, scope. I present two arguments against this view. The first questions the premise that natural language conditionals are true just in case the antecedent is false. The second shows that intuitively false ‘ought’s can still be detached even WITH wide-scope readings. This weakens the motivation for wide-scoping.
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  27. Stephen Finlay (2011). Errors Upon Errors: A Reply to Joyce. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 89 (3):535 - 547.
    In his response to my paper ?The Error in the Error Theory? criticizing his and J. L. Mackie's moral error theory, Richard Joyce finds my treatment of his position inaccurate and my interpretation of morality implausible. In this reply I clarify my objection, showing that it retains its force against their error theory, and I clarify my interpretation of morality, showing that Joyce's objections miss their mark.
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  28. Guy Fletcher (2007). Wrongness, Welfarism and Evolution: Crisp on Reasons and the Good. Ratio 20 (3):341–347.
  29. Andre Norman Gallois (2009). The Fixity of Reasons. Philosophical Studies 146 (2):233 - 248.
    I consider backtracking reasoning: that is, reasoning from backtracking counterfactuals such as if Hitler had won the war, he would have invaded Russia six weeks earlier. Backtracking counterfactuals often strike us as true. Despite that, reasoning from them just as often strikes us as illegitimate. A number of diagnoses have been offered of the illegitimacy of such backtracking reasoning which invoke the fixity of the past, or the direction of causation. I argue against such diagnoses, and in favor of one (...)
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  30. Joshua Gert (2007). Normative Strength and the Balance of Reasons. Philosophical Review 116 (4):533-562.
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  31. Joshua Gert (2002). Korsgaard's Private-Reasons Argument. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 64 (2):303-324.
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  32. Hannah Ginsborg (2006). Reasons for Belief. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 72 (2):286 - 318.
    Davidson claims that nothing can count as a reason for a belief except another belief. This claim is challenged by McDowell, who holds that perceptual experiences can count as reasons for beliefs. I argue that McDowell fails to take account of a distinction between two different senses in which something can count as a reason for belief. While a non-doxastic experience can count as a reason for belief in one of the two senses, this is not the sense which is (...)
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  33. Chris Heathwood (2008). Fitting Attitudes and Welfare. Oxford Studies in Metaethics 3:47-73.
    The purpose of this paper is to present a new argument against so-called fitting attitude analyses of intrinsic value, according to which, roughly, for something to be intrinsically good is for there to be reasons to want it for its own sake. The argument is indirect. First, I submit that advocates of a fitting-attitude analysis of value should, for the sake of theoretical unity, also endorse a fitting-attitude analysis of a closely related but distinct concept: the concept of intrinsic value (...)
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  34. Tim Henning (2012). Normative Reasons Contextualism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 85 (1):593-624.
    This article argues for the view that statements about normative reasons are context-sensitive. Specifically, they are sensitive to a contextual parameter specifying a relevant person's or group's body of information. The argument for normative reasons contextualism starts from the context-sensitivity of the normative “ought” and the further premise that reasons must be aligned with oughts. It is incoherent, I maintain, to suppose that someone normatively ought to φ but has most reason not to φ. So given that oughts depend on (...)
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  35. Tim Henning (2011). Why Be Yourself? Kantian Respect and Frankfurtian Identification. Philosophical Quarterly 61 (245):725-745.
    Harry Frankfurt has claimed that some of our desires are ‘internal’, i.e., our own in a special sense. I defend the idea that a desire's being internal matters in a normative, reasons-involving sense, and offer an explanation for this fact. The explanation is Kantian in spirit. We have reason to respect the desires of persons in so far as respecting them is a way to respect the persons who have them (in some cases, ourselves). But if desires matter normatively in (...)
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  36. Kelly Heuer, Hypotheticalism and the Objectivity of Morality.
    Mark Schroeder’s Slaves of the Passions defends a version of the Humean Theory of Reasons he calls “Hypotheticalism,” according to which all reasons an agent has for action are explained by desires that are in turn explained by reference to her psychology. This paper disputes Schroeder’s claim that his theory has the potential to allay long-standing worries about moral objectivity and normativity within a Humean framework because it fails to attain the requisite level of agent-neutrality for moral reasons. The particular (...)
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  37. Kelly Heuer, Rights and the Second-Person Standpoint: A Challenge to Darwall's Account.
    Stephen Darwall’s The Second Person Standpoint is built around an analysis of the “second-person standpoint,” which he argues builds in a series of presuppositions which help shape (and perhaps even give content to) morality. This paper argues that there is a kind of paradox tied up in the two central claims at the heart of this project – that second-personal address directs one practically rather than epistemically by giving reasons for action one otherwise would not have had, and that all (...)
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  38. Ulrike Heuer (2010). Reasons and Impossibility. Philosophical Studies 147 (2):235 - 246.
    In this paper, I argue that a person can have a reason to do what she cannot do. In a nutshell, the argument is that a person can have derivate reasons relating to an action that she has a non-derivative reason to perform. There are clear examples of derivative reasons that a person has in cases where she cannot do what she (non-derivatively) has reason to do. She couldn’t have those derivative reasons, unless she also had the non-derivative reason to (...)
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  39. Ulrike Heuer (2010). Wrongness and Reasons. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 13 (2):137 - 152.
    Is the wrongness of an action a reason not to perform it? Of course it is, you may answer. That an action is wrong both explains and justifies not doing it. Yet, there are doubts. Thinking that wrongness is a reason is confused, so an argument by Jonathan Dancy. There can’t be such a reason if ‘ϕ-ing is wrong’ is verdictive, and an all things considered judgment about what (not) to do in a certain situation. Such judgments are based on (...)
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  40. Ulrike Heuer (2010). Beyond Wrong Reasons: The Buck-Passing Account of Value. In Michael Brady (ed.), New Waves in Metaethics. Palgrave Macmillan.
  41. Pamela Hieronymi, Research Overview.
    In this document I survey my work to date (i.e., to September 2010) and connect it to the larger themes that have been animating it.
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  42. Pamela Hieronymi (2013). The Use of Reasons in Thought (and the Use of Earmarks in Arguments). Ethics (1):114-127.
    Here I defend my solution to the wrong-kind-of-reason problem against Mark Schroeder’s criticisms. In doing so, I highlight an important difference between other accounts of reasons and my own. While others understand reasons as considerations that count in favor of attitudes, I understand reasons as considerations that bear (or are taken to bear) on questions. Thus, to relate reasons to attitudes, on my account, we must consider the relation between attitudes and questions. By considering that relation, we not only solve (...)
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  43. Pamela Hieronymi (2011). Reasons for Action. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 111 (3pt3):407-427.
    Donald Davidson opens ‘Actions, Reasons, and Causes’ by asking, ‘What is the relation between a reason and an action when the reason explains the action by giving the agent's reason for doing what he did?’ His answer has generated some confusion about reasons for action and made for some difficulty in understanding the place for the agent's own reasons for acting, in the explanation of an action. I offer here a different account of the explanation of action, one that, though (...)
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  44. Pamela Hieronymi (2008). The Reasons of Trust. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 86 (2):213 – 236.
    I argue to a conclusion I find at once surprising and intuitive: although many considerations show trust useful, valuable, important, or required, these are not the reasons for which one trusts a particular person to do a particular thing. The reasons for which one trusts a particular person on a particular occasion concern, not the value, importance, or necessity of trust itself, but rather the trustworthiness of the person in question in the matter at hand. In fact, I will suggest (...)
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  45. Pamela Hieronymi (2006). Controlling Attitudes. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 87 (1):45-74.
    I hope to show that, although belief is subject to two quite robust forms of agency, "believing at will" is impossible; one cannot believe in the way one ordinarily acts. Further, the same is true of intention: although intention is subject to two quite robust forms of agency, the features of belief that render believing less than voluntary are present for intention, as well. It turns out, perhaps surprisingly, that you can no more intend at will than believe at will.
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  46. Pamela Hieronymi (2005). The Wrong Kind of Reason. Journal of Philosophy 102 (9):437 - 457.
    A good number of people currently thinking and writing about reasons identify a reason as a consideration that counts in favor of an action or attitude.1 I will argue that using this as our fundamental account of what a reason is generates a fairly deep and recalcitrant ambiguity; this account fails to distinguish between two quite different sets of considerations that count in favor of certain attitudes, only one of which are the “proper” or “appropriate” kind of reason for them. (...)
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  47. Iwao Hirose & Andrew Reisner (forthcoming). Weighing and Reasoning: A Festschrift for John Broome. Oxford University Press.
    This book is a collection of 15 new papers celebrating the work and career of John Broome. Publication is expected in autumn 2014.
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  48. Stan Husi (2013). Why Reasons Skepticism is Not Self‐Defeating. European Journal of Philosophy 21 (3):424-449.
    : Radical meta-normative skepticism is the view that no standard, norm, or principle has objective authority or normative force. It does not deny that there are norms, standards of correctness, and principles of various kinds that render it possible that we succeed or fail in measuring up to their prerogatives. Rather, it denies that any norm has the status of commanding with objective authority, of giving rise to normative reasons to take seriously and follow its demands. Two powerful transcendental arguments (...)
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  49. Alexander Jech (2013). Affinity and Reason to Love. American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 87 (1):117-136.
    What is the nature of our reasons for loving something? Why does a particular person or activity stimulate our imagination and hopes more deeply than others do? Is the reason in the object of our affection or in ourselves? Much philosophical debate revolves around this dichotomy between objective and subjective reasons for loving. In this paper I will instead propose that our reasons are primarily relational, having to do with the concept of affinity. Affinity, defined as “fitness” between two parties, (...)
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  50. Andrew Jordan (forthcoming). Whole-Hearted Motivation and Relevant Alternatives: A Problem for the Contrastivist Account of Moral Reasons. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice:1-11.
    Recently, Walter Sinott-Armstrong and Justin Snedegar have argued for a general contrastivist theory of reasons. According to the contrastivist account of reasons, all reasons claims should be understood as a relation with an additional place for a contrast class. For example, rather than X being a reason for A to P simpliciter, the contrastivist claims that X is a reason for A to P out of {P,Q,R…}. The main goal of this paper is to argue that the contrastivist account of (...)
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