David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Oxford Studies in Normative Ethics (forthcoming)
How is what an agent ought to do related to what an agent ought to prefer that she does? More precisely, suppose we know what an agent’s preference ordering ought to be over the prospects of performing the various courses of action open to her. Can we infer from this information how she ought to act, and if so, how can we infer it? One view (which, for convenience, I will call ‘actualism’) is that an agent ought to just in case she ought to prefer the prospect of her -ing to the prospect of her not -ing. Another view (which, for convenience, I will call ‘possibilism’) is that an agent ought to just in case she ought to prefer the prospect of some maximally specific option that involves her -ing to the prospect of any maximally specific option that does not involve her -ing (with the quantifiers appropriately restricted). After making some preliminary clarifications in part 1, I will discuss actualism and possibilism in parts 2 and 3, respectively. I will argue, in part 2, that actualism is very far from the truth. And I will argue, in part 3, that while the standard version of possibilism faces significant problems, there are much better versions of possibilism that avoid the objections to the standard view. Ultimately, however, I will argue that even the best forms of possibilism are not acceptable. Then, in part 4, I will propose what I take to be the best view, one that is neither strictly possibilist nor actualist, and that avoids the shortcomings of both these views.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|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
Christopher Menzel (1990). Actualism, Ontological Commitment, and Possible World Semantics. Synthese 85 (3):355 - 389.
Erich Rast (2010). Classical Possibilism and Fictional Objects. In Franck Lihoreau (ed.), Fiction in Philosophy.
James E. Tomberlin (1996). Actualism or Possibilism? Philosophical Studies 84 (2-3):263 - 281.
Johan E. Gustafsson (2014). Combinative Consequentialism and the Problem of Act Versions. Philosophical Studies 167 (3):585–596.
Noa Latham (2003). Are There Any Nonmotivating Reasons for Action? In Sven Walter & Heinz-Dieter Heckmann (eds.), Physicalism and Mental Causation. Imprint Academic. 273.
Christopher Menzel (1993). Possibilism and Object Theory. Philosophical Studies 69 (2-3):195 - 208.
Rob van Someren Greve (2013). Objective Consequentialism and Avoidable Imperfections. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 16 (3):481-492.
Bernard Linsky & Edward N. Zalta (1996). In Defense of the Contingently Nonconcrete. Philosophical Studies 84 (2-3):283-294.
Peter Fritz (2013). Modal Ontology and Generalized Quantifiers. Journal of Philosophical Logic 42 (4):643-678.
Matthew Hanser (1998). Intention and Teleology. Mind 107 (426):381-401.
Kris McDaniel (2006). Modal Realisms. Philosophical Perspectives 20 (1):303–331.
Christopher Menzel (1991). Temporal Actualism and Singular Foreknowledge. Philosophical Perspectives 5:475-507.
Harold Noonan (2013). Presentism and Eternalism. Erkenntnis 78 (1):219 - 227.
Karen Bennett (2006). Proxy “Actualism”. Philosophical Studies 129 (2):263 - 294.
Added to index2011-03-28
Total downloads85 ( #15,213 of 1,102,700 )
Recent downloads (6 months)11 ( #18,253 of 1,102,700 )
How can I increase my downloads?