David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 15 (4):521 - 531 (2012)
Most moral philosophers agree that if a moral agent is incapable of performing some act ϕ because of a physical incapacity, then they do not have a reason to ϕ. Most also claim that if an agent is incapable of ϕ-ing due to a psychological incapacity, brought about by, for example, an obsession or phobia, then this does not preclude them from having a reason to ϕ. This is because the 'ought implies can' principle is usually interpreted as a claim about physical, rather than psychological, capacities. In this paper I argue for an opposing view: if we don't have reasons to do things that we are physically incapable of doing, then neither do we have reasons to do things we are psychologically incapable of doing. I also argue that extending the 'ought implies can' principle to psychological capacities makes the principle more attractive
|Keywords||Reasons for action Capacities Ought implies can Korsgaard Pettit Smith|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
|Through your library||Configure|
References found in this work BETA
Robert Audi (2004). Reasons, Practical Reason, and Practical Reasoning. Ratio 17 (2):119–149.
Joshua Gert (2004). Brute Rationality: Normativity and Human Action. Cambridge University Press.
Ulrike Heuer (2010). Reasons and Impossibility. Philosophical Studies 147 (2):235 - 246.
Christine M. Korsgaard (1986). Skepticism About Practical Reason. Journal of Philosophy 83 (1):5-25.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Maria Alvarez (2008). Reasons and the Ambiguity of 'Belief'. Philosophical Explorations 11 (1):53 – 65.
Michael Smith (2011). Deontological Moral Obligations and Non-Welfarist Agent-Relative Values. Ratio 24 (4):351-363.
Noa Latham (2003). Are There Any Nonmotivating Reasons for Action? In Sven Walter & Heinz-Dieter Heckmann (eds.), Physicalism and Mental Causation. Imprint Academic. 273.
Mark Mercer (2001). In Defence of Weak Psychological Egoism. Erkenntnis 55 (2):217-237.
Clayton Littlejohn (2009). ‘Ought’, ‘Can’, and Practical Reasons. American Philosophical Quarterly 46 (4):363-73.
Paul Sheldon Davies (1996). Discovering the Functional Mesh: On the Methods of Evolutionary Psychology. [REVIEW] Minds and Machines 6 (4):559-585.
Alfred Mele (2007). Reasonology and False Beliefs. Philosophical Papers 36 (1):91-118.
Paul Litton, Responsibility Status of the Psychopath: On Moral Reasoning and Rational Self-Governance.
Wayne A. Davis (2005). Reasons and Psychological Causes. Philosophical Studies 122 (1):51 - 101.
Mark Schroeder (2007). The Humean Theory of Reasons. In Russ Shafer-Landau (ed.), Oxford Studies in Metaethics Vol. 2. Oxford University Press. 195--219.
Pamela Hieronymi (2011). Reasons for Action. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 111 (3pt3):407-427.
Ben Vilhauer (2008). Hard Determinism, Humeanism, and Virtue Ethics. Southern Journal of Philosophy 46 (1):121-144.
Stephen Finlay (2006). The Reasons That Matter. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 84 (1):1 – 20.
Dean Lubin (2009). External Reasons. Metaphilosophy 40 (2):273-291.
Gregory Johnson (2009). Mechanisms and Functional Brain Areas. Minds and Machines 19 (2):255-271.
Added to index2011-09-12
Total downloads54 ( #24,569 of 1,089,047 )
Recent downloads (6 months)3 ( #30,948 of 1,089,047 )
How can I increase my downloads?