David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophical Review 96 (July):335-81 (1987)
The Aristotelian dictum that desire is the starting point of practical reasoning that ends in action can of course be denied. Its denial is a commonplace of moral theory in the tradition of Kant. But in this essay I am concerned with that issue only indirectly. I shall not contend that rational action always or necessarily does involve desire as its starting point; nor shall I deny it. My question concerns instead the possibility of its ever beginning in desire. For there is a question whether it is even possible for reasoning to begin in desire, a question arising from the nature of desire and its objects, which to my knowledge has not been articulated. If we can see how desire can provide the arche of action, then we can consider later, and from that vantage point, whether it is necessary that it should do so. It will, I think, be possible eventually to argue that if practical reasoning has the character it must have, if it can begin in desire, then its starting point can be nothing but desire.
|Keywords||Authority Belief Desire Epistemology Practical Reason Reasons|
|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
Nicholas Silins (2005). Transmission Failure Failure. Philosophical Studies 126 (1):71 - 102.
Hannah Ginsborg (2006). Reasons for Belief. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 72 (2):286 - 318.
David Bain (2013). What Makes Pains Unpleasant? Philosophical Studies 166 (1):69-89.
David Wall (2009). Akrasia and Self-Control. Philosophical Explorations 12 (1):69 – 78.
Jennifer Hawkins (2008). Desiring the Bad Under the Guise of the Good. Philosophical Quarterly 58 (231):244–264.
Similar books and articles
Christopher G. Framarin (2006). The Desire You Are Required to Get Rid Of: A Functionalist Analysis of Desire in the Bhagavadgita. Philosophy East and West 56 (4):604-+.
Charles B. Cross (2008). Nonbelief and the Desire-as-Belief Thesis. Acta Analytica 23 (2):115-124.
Philip Pettit & Michael Smith (1990). Backgrounding Desire. Philosophical Review 99 (4):565-592.
Chris Heathwood (2011). Desire-Based Theories of Reasons, Pleasure, and Welfare. Oxford Studies in Metaethics 6:79-106.
Christian Miller (2007). The Structure of Instrumental Practical Reasoning. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 75 (1):1-40.
Reginald Jackson (1943). Bishop Butler's Refutation of Psychological Hedonism. Philosophy 18 (70):114 - 139.
David Wall (2012). A Moorean Paradox of Desire. Philosophical Explorations 15 (1):63-84.
G. F. Schueler (1995). Desire: Its Role in Practical Reason and the Explanation of Action. MIT Press.
Sergio Tenenbaum (ed.) (2010). Desire, Practical Reason, and the Good. Oxford University Press.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads133 ( #6,376 of 1,100,968 )
Recent downloads (6 months)11 ( #16,948 of 1,100,968 )
How can I increase my downloads?