David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
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 a tendency to change one's judgment so that one values the tempting option as the best -- weak willed action will typically be akratic. But conversely, strong willed action now looks as though it will be akratic. I argue though that it need not be, once we distinguish between actual judgment, and dispositions to judge. Within this framework, the issue of inverse akrasia looks rather different. I argue that whilst Huckleberry Finn plausibly does show weakness of will in abandoning his resolve to turn Jim in, it is far from clear that he is akratic: a point brought out well in Twain's later additions to the text. Whilst cases of inverse akrasia are clearly theoretically possible, I suggest that, given cognitive dissonance mechanisms, they are unlikely to be very common.
|Keywords||action theory akrasia weakness of will|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library||
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Edmund Henden (2004). Intentions, All-Out Evaluations and Weakness of the Will. Erkenntnis 61 (1):53-74.
Christopher Bobonich & Pierre Destrée (eds.) (2007). Akrasia in Greek Philosophy: From Socrates to Plotinus. Brill.
Christopher Cordner (1985). Jackson on Weakness of Will. Mind 94 (374):273-280.
Sergio Tenenbaum (1999). The Judgment of a Weak Will. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 59 (4):875-911.
Alfred Mele (2010). Weakness of Will and Akrasia. Philosophical Studies 150 (3):391–404.
Christine Tappolet (2003). Emotions and the Intelligibility of Akratic Action. In Sarah Stroud & Christine Tappolet (eds.), Weakness of Will and Practical Irrationality. Oxford: Clarendon Press. 97--120.
Amelie Rorty (1983). Akratic Believers. American Philosophical Quarterly 20 (2):175-183.
Richard Holton (1999). Intention and Weakness of Will. Journal of Philosophy 96 (5):241-262.
Arthur F. Walker (1989). The Problem of Weakness of Will. Noûs 23 (5):653-676.
Added to index2010-01-18
Total downloads254 ( #2,785 of 1,696,508 )
Recent downloads (6 months)23 ( #20,607 of 1,696,508 )
How can I increase my downloads?