David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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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|
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References found in this work BETA
Robert Nozick (1993). The Nature of Rationality. Princeton University Press.
Christine M. Korsgaard (1986). Skepticism About Practical Reason. Journal of Philosophy 83 (1):5-25.
Michael J. Zimmerman (1996). The Concept of Moral Obligation. Cambridge University Press.
Joshua Gert (2004). Brute Rationality: Normativity and Human Action. Cambridge University Press.
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