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  1. Jonathan E. Adler (2002). Akratic Believing? Philosophical Studies 110 (1):1 - 27.
    Davidson's account of weakness of will depends upon a parallel that he draws between practical and theoretical reasoning. I argue that the parallel generates a misleading picture of theoretical reasoning. Once the misleading picture is corrected, I conclude that the attempt to model akratic belief on Davidson's account of akratic action cannot work. The arguments that deny the possibility of akratic belief also undermine, more generally, various attempts to assimilate theoretical to practical reasoning.
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  2. Nomy Arpaly (2003). Unprincipled Virtue: An Inquiry Into Moral Agency. Oxford University Press.
    Nomy Arpaly rejects the model of rationality used by most ethicists and action theorists. Both observation and psychology indicate that people act rationally without deliberation, and act irrationally with deliberation. By questioning the notion that our own minds are comprehensible to us--and therefore questioning much of the current work of action theorists and ethicists--Arpaly attempts to develop a more realistic conception of moral agency.
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  3. Nomy Arpaly (2000). On Acting Rationally Against One's Best Judgment. Ethics 110 (3):488-513.
    I argue that akrasia is not always significantly irrational. To be more precise, I argue that an agent is sometimes more rational for being akratic then she would have been for being enkratic or strong-willed.
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  4. Robert Audi (1993). Action, Intention, and Reason. Cornell University Press.
    In this collection of essays, Audi develops a general theory of action ranging from the nature of action and action-explanation to free and rational action.
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  5. Robert Audi (1990). Weakness of Will and Rational Action. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 68 (3):270 – 281.
    Weakness of will has been widely discussed from at least three points of view. It has been examined historically, with Aristotle recently occupying centre stage. It has been analysed conceptually, with the question of its nature and possibility in the forefront. It has been considered normatively in relation to both rational action and moral character. My concern is not historical and is only secondarily conceptual: while I hope to clarify what constitutes weakness of will, I presuppose, rather than construct, an (...)
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  6. Robert Audi (1979). Weakness of Will and Practical Judgment. Noûs 13 (2):173-196.
    Weakness of will is a common phenomenon of human experience. But what is it? It has proved highly resistant to analysis, and even the accounts that seem to capture our intuitions about what weakness of will is raise problems about how it is possible. This is because these accounts seem inconsistent with some highly plausible principles about action. My aim here is to propose a new account of weakness of will and its relation to practical judgment, and to explain how (...)
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  7. Tomás Barrero (2010). Razón, acción Y debilidad de la voluntad. Una lectura semántica. Ideas y Valores 59 (143):161-187.
    This paper develops some of Austin’s ideas on excuses, stressing their “dimensional” character and relating it to Searle’s distinction between intention-in-action and previous intention, in order to show that the original speech-act shaped distinction between weakness of the will and moral weakness can be embedded in a quite different theoretical framework such as Davidson’s, while Austin’s dimensional classification of actions cannot. Finally, the article analyzes how Grice’s critique of Davidson’s views on akrasia is more faithful to Austin and more radical (...)
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  8. Greg Bassett (2013). Incontinence and Perception. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 16 (5):1019-1028.
    The traditional problem of incontinence raises the question of whether there is any way to account for action contrary to judgment. When one acts, rather than only being acted upon by circumstances, the action is explained in terms of the reasons for action one judges oneself to have. It therefore seems impossible to explain action that iscontrary to such judgment. This paper examines the question of how such explanation would be possible. After excluding accounts that either eliminate incontinence or render (...)
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  9. James Beebe (2013). Weakness of Will, Reasonability, and Compulsion. Synthese 190 (18):4077-4093.
    Experimental philosophers have recently begun to investigate the folk conception of weakness of will (e.g., Mele in Philos Stud 150:391–404, 2010; May and Holton in Philos Stud 157:341–360, 2012; Beebe forthcoming; Sousa and Mauro forthcoming). Their work has focused primarily on the ways in which akrasia (i.e., acting contrary to one’s better judgment), unreasonable violations of resolutions, and variations in the moral valence of actions modulate folk attributions of weakness of will. A key finding that has emerged from this research (...)
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  10. Jonathan Bennett (1974). The Conscience of Huckleberry Finn. Philosophy 49 (188):123-134.
    In this paper1 I shall present not just the conscience of Huckleberry Finn but two others as well. One of them is the conscience of Heinrich Himmler. He became a Nazi in 1923; he served drably and quietly, but well, and was rewarded with increasing responsibility and power. At the peak of his career he held many offices and commands, of which the most powerful was that of leader of the S.S. - the principal police force of the Nazi regime. (...)
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  11. Vera Bergelson (2009). The Case of Weak Will and Wayward Desire. Criminal Law and Philosophy 3 (1):19-28.
    In this article, I confront Garvey’s argument that a weak-willed individual deserves partial excuse for trying to resist a strong desire that pushes him toward commission of a criminal act even though in the end he unreasonably abandons his resistance and commits the crime. I attempt to refute Garvey’s argument on two counts: one, I question whether the law should indeed provide mitigation to such an offender; and two, I argue that, even if it should, this mitigation may not come (...)
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  12. John Bigelow, Susan M. Dodds & Robert Pargetter (1990). Temptation and the Will. American Philosophical Quarterly 27 (1):39-49.
    The authors argue, against Frank Jackson, that weakness (and strength) of will involves higher-order mental states. The authors hold that this is compatible with a decision-theoretic belief-desire psychology of human action.
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  13. Renée Bilodeau (2002). Intention Et Faiblesse de la Volonté. Dialogue 41 (01):27-44.
    Akrasia is both an intentional and an irrational phenomenon. These two characteristics can be reconciled by a careful reconstruction of practical reasoning. I undertake this task along Davidsonian lines, arguing against his critics that the notion of unconditional judgment is the key to an adequate account of akrasia. Unless akrasia is conceived as a failure of the agent to form an unconditional judgment that conforms to her best judgment "all things considered," the intentionality of akrasia is lost. Likewise, I show (...)
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  14. Shoshana Brassfield (2013). Descartes and the Danger of Irresolution. Essays in Philosophy 14 (2):162-178.
    Descartes's approach to practical judgments about what is beneficial or harmful, or what to pursue or avoid, is almost exactly the opposite of his approach to theoretical judgments about the true nature of things. Instead of the cautious skepticism for which Descartes is known, throughout his ethical writings he recommends developing the habit of making firm judgments and resolutely carrying them out, no matter how doubtful and uncertain they may be. Descartes, strikingly, takes irresolution to be the source of remorse (...)
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  15. Michael Bratman (1979). Practical Reasoning and Weakness of the Will. Noûs 13 (2):153-171.
    In a case of weak-willed action the agent acts-freely, deliberately, and for a reason-in a way contrary to his best judgment, even though he thinks he could act in accordance with his best judgment. The possibility of such actions has posed one problem in moral philosophy, the exact nature of the problem it poses another. In this essay I offer an answer to the latter problem: an explanation of why a plausible account of free, deliberate and purposive action seems to (...)
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  16. Sarah Buss (1997). Weakness of Will. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 78 (1):13–44.
    My chief aim is to explain how someone can act freely against her own best judgment. But I also have a second aim: to defend a conception of practical rationality according to which someone cannot do something freely if she believes it would be better to do something else. These aims may appear incompatible. But I argue that practical reason has the capacity to undermine itself in such a way that it produces reasons for behaving irrationally. Weakness of will is (...)
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  17. Marcia Cavell (1989). Book Review:Irrationality: An Essay on Akrasia, Self-Deception and Self-Control. Alfred R. Mele. [REVIEW] Ethics 99 (2):429-.
  18. William Charlton (1988). Weakness of Will. B. Blackwell.
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  19. Daniel Cohen & Toby Handfield (2010). Rational Capacities, Resolve, and Weakness of Will. Mind 119 (476):907 - 932.
    In this paper we present an account of practical rationality and weakness of will in terms of rational capacities. We show how our account rectifies various shortcomings in Michael Smith's related theory. In particular, our account is capable of accommodating cases of weak-willed behaviour that are not `akratic', or otherwise contrary to the agent's better judgement. Our account differs from Smith's primarily by incorporating resolve: a third rational capacity for resolute maintenance of one's intentions. We discuss further two ways to (...)
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  20. John M. Connolly (2007). Das Problem der Willensschwäche in der Mittelalterlichen Philosophie / the Problem of Weakness of Will in Medieval Philosophy [Recherches de Théologie Et Philosophie Médiévales, Bibliotheca 8]. Review of Metaphysics 60 (4):865-866.
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  21. Christopher Cordner (1985). Jackson on Weakness of Will. Mind 94 (374):273-280.
    I begin with a resume ofJ ackson's position. I shall follow this with some counter- examples; and end with a diagnosis of why the problems with Jackson's account arise. In objecting to Jackson's account I am not presupposing the truth of one or other particular account of akrasia. What I am supposing is that unless we recognize some kind of conflict of mind as engaged at the time of action, we are not speaking of akrasia. I hive argued that Jackson, (...)
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  22. Norman O. Dahl (1988). Book Review:The Possibility of Weakness of Will. Robert Dunn. [REVIEW] Ethics 99 (1):160-.
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  23. John J. Davenport (2002). Fischer and Ravizza on Moral Sanity and Weakness of Will. Journal of Ethics 6 (3):235–259.
    This essay evaluates John Martin Fischer and Mark Ravizza's mature semi-compatibilist account of moral responsibility, focusingon their new theory of moderate reasons-responsiveness as a model of "moral sanity." This theory, presented in _Responsibility and Control_, solves many of the problems with Fischer's earlier weak reasons-responsiveness model, such as its unwanted implication that agents who are only erratically responsive to bizarre reasons can be responsible for their acts. But I argue that the new model still faces several problems. It does not (...)
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  24. Donald Davidson (1980). Essays on Actions and Events. Oxford University Press.
  25. Donald Davidson (1970). How Is Weakness of the Will Possible? In Joel Feinberg (ed.), Moral Concepts. Oxford University Press.
    D. In doing x an agent acts incontinently if and only if: 1) the agent does x intentionally; 2) the agent believes there is an alternative action y open to him; and 3) the agent judges that, all things considered, it would be better to do y than to do x.
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  26. Dylan Dodd (2009). Weakness of Will as Intention-Violation. European Journal of Philosophy 17 (1):45-59.
    According to the traditional view of weakness of will, a weak-willed agent acts in a way inconsistent with what she judges to be best.1 Richard Holton has argued against this view, claiming that ‘the central cases of weakness of will are best characterized not as cases in which people act against their better judgment, but as cases in which they fail to act on their intentions’ (1999: 241). But Holton doesn’t think all failures to act on one’s prior intentions, or (...)
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  27. Dylan Dodd (2005). Intentions, Plans, and Weakness of Will. Southwest Philosophy Review 21 (1):45-52.
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  28. Jon Elster (1985). Weakness of Will and the Free-Rider Problem. Economics and Philosophy 1 (2):231-265.
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  29. Joel Feinberg (1969). Moral Concepts. London, Oxford U.P..
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  30. Patrick Fleming (2010). Hume on Weakness of Will. British Journal for the History of Philosophy 18 (4):597-609.
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  31. Chris Fraser, Weakness of Will, the Background, and Chinese Thought.
    This essay applies John Searle’s account of weakness of will to explore the classical Chinese problem of weak-willed action. Searle’s discussion focuses on the shortcomings of the Western classical model of rationality in explaining weakness of will, so he naturally says little about the practical ethical problem of overcoming weak-willed action, the focus of the relevant Chinese texts. Yet his theory of action, specifically his notion of the Background, suggests a compelling approach to the practical issue, one that converges with (...)
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  32. Tamar Szabó Gendler (1998). Continence on the Cheap: A Response to Roy Sorensen. Mind 107 (428):821.
    A brief "advertisement" in response to Roy Sorensen's "advertisement" "A Cure for Incontinence".
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  33. R. Gillon (1993). Autonomy, Respect for Autonomy and Weakness of Will. Journal of Medical Ethics 19 (4):195-196.
  34. J. C. B. Gosling (1990). Weakness of the Will. Routledge.
    Weakness of the Will gives an excellent historical survey of philosophers' puzzles about the possibility of deliberately taking the worse course. Plato, Aristotle, the Stoics, a selection of medieval philosophers, and more contemporary philosophers are explored to illustrate why and how they avoid discussing the problem.
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  35. Daniel Guevara (2009). The Will as Practical Reason and the Problem of Akrasia. Review of Metaphysics 62 (3):525-550.
    This article argues for the possibility of aggressive akrasia, or the akrasia rooted in “unqualified knowingness.” The aggressive akratic acts knowledgeably and voluntarily for a bad end. Many philosophers reject the very possibility of aggressive akrasia given a prior commitment to closely identifying the will with practical reason, thereby effectively dismissing the possibility of an agent’s full responsibility for a morally evil act. Hence, these philosophers try to explain akrasia by challenging the voluntariness of the akratic’s action, or his knowledge, (...)
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  36. Janna Hastings, Nicolas Le Novère, Werner Ceusters, Kevin Mulligan & Barry Smith (2012). Wanting What We Don’T Want to Want: Representing Addiction in Interoperable Bio-Ontologies. In Proceeedings of the Third International Conference on Biomedical Ontology. CEUR.
    Ontologies are being developed throughout the biomedical sciences to address standardization, integration, classification and reasoning needs against the background of an increasingly data-driven research paradigm. In particular, ontologies facilitate the translation of basic research into benefits for the patient by making research results more discoverable and by facilitating knowledge transfer across disciplinary boundaries. Addressing and adequately treating mental illness is one of our most pressing public health challenges. Primary research across multiple disciplines such as psychology, psychiatry, biology, neuroscience and pharmacology (...)
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  37. Janna Hastings, Nicolas Le Novère, Werner Ceusters, Kevin Mulligan & Barry Smith (2012). Wanting What We Don’T Want to Want: Representing Addiction in Interoperable Bio-Ontologies. In Proceeedings of the Third International Conference on Biomedical Ontology. CEUR.
    Ontologies are being developed throughout the biomedical sciences to address standardization, integration, classification and reasoning needs against the background of an increasingly data-driven research paradigm. In particular, ontologies facilitate the translation of basic research into benefits for the patient by making research results more discoverable and by facilitating knowledge transfer across disciplinary boundaries. Addressing and adequately treating mental illness is one of our most pressing public health challenges. Primary research across multiple disciplines such as psychology, psychiatry, biology, neuroscience and pharmacology (...)
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  38. Anthony E. Hatzimoysis (2003). Philosophy and the Emotions. Cambridge University Press.
  39. Joseph Heath & Joel Anderson (2010). Procrastination and the Extended Will. In Chrisoula Andreou & Mark D. White (eds.), The Thief of Time. Oxford University Press. 233--253.
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  40. John Heil (1984). Doxastic Incontinence. Mind 93 (369):56-70.
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  41. Edmund Henden (2004). Intentions, All-Out Evaluations and Weakness of the Will. Erkenntnis 61 (1):53-74.
    The problem of weakness of the will is often thought to arise because of an assumption that freely, deliberately and intentionally doing something must correspond to the agent's positive evaluation of doing that thing. In contemporary philosophy, a very common response to the problem of weakness has been to adopt the view that free, deliberate action does not need to correspond to any positive evaluation at all. Much of the support for this view has come from the difficulties the denial (...)
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  42. Edmund Henden (2004). Weakness of Will and Divisions of the Mind. European Journal of Philosophy 12 (2):199–213.
    Some authors have argued that, in order to give an account of weakness of the will, we must assume that the mind is divisible into parts. This claim is often referred to as the partitioning claim. There appear to be two main arguments for this claim. While the first is conceptual and claims that the notion of divisibility is entailed by the notion of non-rational mental causation (which is held to be a necessary condition of weakness of the will), the (...)
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  43. Noel Hendrickson (2008). Crucible of Reason: Intentional Action, Practical Rationality, and Weakness of Will. Faith and Philosophy 25 (1):116-119.
  44. Thomas Hill (1986). Weakness of Will and Character. Philosophical Topics 14 (2):93-115.
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  45. Edward Hinchman (2009). Receptivity and the Will. Noûs 43 (3):395-427.
    This paper defends an internalist view of agency. The challenge for an internalist view of agency is to explain how an agent’s all-things-considered judgment has necessary implications for action, a challenge that lies specifically in the possibility of two species of akratic break: between judgment and intention, and between intention and action. I argue that the two breaks are not importantly different: in each case akrasia manifests a single species of irrational self-mistrust. I aim to vindicate internalism by showing how (...)
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  46. Paul Hoffman (2008). Freedom and Weakness of Will. Ratio 21 (1):42–54.
    Can absolute freedom of will be defended by arguing that apparent cases of diminished freedom when we act out of passion are cases of weakness of will? Rogers Albritton thought so. What is intriguing about Albritton's view is that he thought when we act from desire we are making choices, yet our desires are not functioning as reasons for those choices. So our desires must be influencing our choices in some other unspecified way that does not diminish our freedom. I (...)
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  47. Frank Hofmann, Besires and the Weakness of Will Argument.
    Can there be a state which is both a belief and a desire? More exactly, a state which is a belief that p and a desire that q, where p and q may be the same proposition or a different one? Such a state would be a ‘besire’ (following Altham 1986). So a first question is the general question whether besires are possible. Normative attitudes would be good candidates for besires. For example, if Sandra has the normative attitude that it (...)
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  48. Richard Holton, Inverse Akrasia and Weakness of Will.
    The standard account of weakness of will identifies it with akrasia, that is, with action against one's best judgment. Elsewhere I have argued that weakness of will is better understood as over-readily giving up on one's resolutions. Many cases of weak willed action will not be akratic: in over-readily abandoning a resolution an agent may well do something that they judge at the time to be best. Indeed, in so far as temptation typically gives rise to judgment shift -- to (...)
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  49. Richard Holton (1999). Intention and Weakness of Will. Journal of Philosophy 96 (5):241-262.
    Philosophical orthodoxy identifies weakness of will with akrasia: the weak willed person is someone who intentionally acts against their better judgement. It is argued that this is a mistake. Weakness of will consists in a quite different failing, namely an over-ready revision of one's intentions. Building on the work of Bratman, an account of such over-ready revision is given. A number of examples are then adduced showing how weakness of will, so understood, differs from akrasia.
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  50. Richard Holton (1999). Intention and Weakness of Will. Journal of Philosophy 96 (5):241-262.
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