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How Is Weakness of the Will Possible?

In Joel Feinberg (ed.), Moral Concepts. Oxford University Press (1969)

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  1. Agency and Virtues.Zahra Khazaei - 2019 - Journal of Philosophical Theological Research 21 (3):119-140.
    In the philosophy of action, agency manifests the capacity of the agent to act. An agent is one who acts voluntarily, consciously and intentionally. This article studies the relationship between virtues and agency to learn to what extent agency is conceptually and metaphysically dependent on moral or epistemic virtues; whether virtue is a necessary condition for action and agency, besides the belief, desire and intention? Or are virtues necessary merely for the moral or epistemic character of the agent and not (...)
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  • Sobre a possibilidade de pensarmos o mundo: o debate entre John McDowell e Donald Davidson.Marco Aurelio Sousa Alves - 2008 - Dissertation, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais
    The thesis evaluates a contemporary debate concerning the very possibility of thinking about the world. In the first chapter, McDowell's critique of Davidson is presented, focusing on the coherentism defended by the latter. The critique of the myth of the given (as it appears in Sellars and Wittgenstein), as well as the necessity of a minimal empiricism (which McDowell finds in Quine and Kant), lead to an oscillation in contemporary thinking between two equally unsatisfactory ways of understanding the empirical content (...)
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  • Rationalizing Beliefs: Evidential Vs. Pragmatic Reasons.Hamid Vahid - 2010 - Synthese 176 (3):447-462.
    Beliefs can be evaluated from a number of perspectives. Epistemic evaluation involves epistemic standards and appropriate epistemic goals. On a truthconducive account of epistemic justification, a justified belief is one that serves the goal of believing truths and avoiding falsehoods. Beliefs are also prompted by nonepistemic reasons. This raises the question of whether, say, the pragmatic benefits of a belief are able to rationalize it. In this paper, after criticizing certain responses to this question, I shall argue that, as far (...)
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  • What in the World is Weakness of Will?Joshua May & Richard Holton - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 157 (3):341–360.
    At least since the middle of the twentieth century, philosophers have tended to identify weakness of will with akrasia—i.e. acting, or having a disposition to act, contrary to one‘s judgments about what is best for one to do. However, there has been some recent debate about whether this captures the ordinary notion of weakness of will. Richard Holton (1999, 2009) claims that it doesn’t, while Alfred Mele (2010) argues that, to a certain extent, it does. As Mele recognizes, the question (...)
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  • Judith Jarvis Thomson’s Normativity. [REVIEW]Gilbert Harman - 2011 - Philosophical Studies 154 (3):435 - 441.
    Judith Jarvis Thomson’s Normativity Content Type Journal Article Pages 435-441 DOI 10.1007/s11098-011-9737-y Authors Gilbert Harman, Department of Philosophy, Princeton University, 1879 Hall, Princeton, NJ 08544, USA Journal Philosophical Studies Online ISSN 1573-0883 Print ISSN 0031-8116 Journal Volume Volume 154 Journal Issue Volume 154, Number 3.
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  • Agency and Normative Self-Governance.Matthew Silverstein - 2017 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 95 (3):517-528.
    We are agents: we can deliberate about what to do, and then act on the basis of that deliberation. We are also capable of normative self-governance: we can identify and respond to reasons as reasons. Many theorists believe that these two capacities are intimately connected. On the basis of this connection they conclude that practical reasoning must be carried out under the guise of a justification. This paper explores two strategies for avoiding that conclusion. The first, which just denies the (...)
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  • Reasoning Under Scarcity.Jennifer M. Morton - 2017 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 95 (3):543-559.
    Practical deliberation consists in thinking about what to do. Such deliberation is deemed rational when it conforms to certain normative requirements. What is often ignored is the role that an agent's context can play in so-called ‘failures’ of rationality. In this paper, I use recent cognitive science research investigating the effects of resource-scarcity on decision-making and cognitive function to argue that context plays an important role in determining which norms should structure an agent's deliberation. This evidence undermines the view that (...)
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  • On a Judgment of One’s Own: Heideggerian Authenticity, Standpoints, and All Things Considered.Denis McManus - 2019 - Mind 128 (512):1181-1204.
    This paper explores two models using which we might understand Heidegger's notion of ‘Eigentlichkeit’. Although typically translated as ‘authenticity’, a more literal construal of this term would be ‘ownness’ or ‘ownedness’; and in addition to the paper's exegetical value, it also develops two interestingly different understandings of what it is to have a judgment of one's own. The first model understands Heideggerian authenticity as the owning of what I call a ‘standpoint’. Although this model provides an understanding of a number (...)
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  • Rationalität und Normativität.Christine Tiefensee & Johannes Marx - 2015 - Zeitschrift Für Politische Theorie 6:19-37.
    The concept of rationality, predominantly in the guise of rational choice theory, plays a key role in the social sciences. Yet, whilst rational choice theory is usually understood as part of positive political science, it is also widely employed within normative political theories. In this paper, we examine how allegedly positive rational choice arguments can find application within normative political theories. To this effect, we distinguish between two interpretations of rationality ascriptions, one empirical, the other normative. Since, as we demonstrate, (...)
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  • Reconciling Enkrasia and Higher-Order Defeat.Mattias Skipper - 2019 - Erkenntnis 84 (6):1369-1386.
    Titelbaum Oxford studies in epistemology, 2015) has recently argued that the Enkratic Principle is incompatible with the view that rational belief is sensitive to higher-order defeat. That is to say, if it cannot be rational to have akratic beliefs of the form “p, but I shouldn’t believe that p,” then rational beliefs cannot be defeated by higher-order evidence, which indicates that they are irrational. In this paper, I distinguish two ways of understanding Titelbaum’s argument, and argue that neither version is (...)
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  • The Relationship Between Scientific Psychology and Common-Sense Psychology.Kathleen V. Wilkes - 1991 - Synthese 89 (October):15-39.
    This paper explores the relationship between common-sense psychology (CSP) and scientific psychology (SP) — which we could call the mind-mind problem. CSP has come under much attack recently, most of which is thought to be unjust or misguided. This paper's first section examines the many differences between the aims, interests, explananda, explanantia, methodology, conceptual frameworks, and relationships to the neurosciences, that divide CSP and SP. Each of the two is valid within its own territory, and there is no competition between (...)
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  • Frog and Toad Lose Control.J. Kennett & M. Smith - 1996 - Analysis 56 (2):63-73.
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  • Agency, Akrasia, and the Normative Environment.Gregory Antill - 2019 - Journal of the American Philosophical Association 5 (3):321-338.
    Just as the existence of practical akrasia has been treated as important evidence for the existence of our practical agency, the alleged absence of epistemic akrasia—cases in which a believer believes some proposition contrary to her considered judgments about what she has most reason to believe—has recently been marshaled as grounds for skepticism about the existence of similar forms of epistemic agency. In this paper, I defend the existence of epistemic agency against such objections. Rather than argue against the impossibility (...)
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  • Collaborative Irrationality, Akrasia, and Groupthink: Social Disruptions of Emotion Regulation.Thomas Szanto - 2016 - Frontiers in Psychology 7:1-17.
    The present paper proposes an integrative account of social forms of practical irrationality and corresponding disruptions of individual and group-level emotion regulation. I will especially focus on disruptions in emotion regulation by means of collaborative agential and doxastic akrasia. I begin by distinguishing mutual, communal and collaborative forms of akrasia. Such a taxonomy seems all the more needed as, rather surprisingly, in the face of huge philosophical interest in analysing the possibility, structure and mechanisms of individual practical irrationality, with very (...)
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  • Buddhist Perspectives on Free Will: Agentless Agency?Rick Repetti (ed.) - 2016 - London, UK: Routledge / Francis & Taylor.
    A collection of essays, mostly original, on the actual and possible positions on free will available to Buddhist philosophers, by Christopher Gowans, Rick Repetti, Jay Garfield, Owen Flanagan, Charles Goodman, Galen Strawson, Susan Blackmore, Martin T. Adam, Christian Coseru, Marie Friquegnon, Mark Siderits, Ben Abelson, B. Alan Wallace, Peter Harvey, Emily McRae, and Karin Meyers, and a Foreword by Daniel Cozort.
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  • In Defense of the Argument for Emotional Assent.Martin Smith - 2018 - American Philosophical Quarterly 55 (1):51-62.
    This paper defends the argument that the irrationality of recalcitrant emotions can only be explained by understanding emotions as yielding a distinctly nonjudgmental assent. The four premises of the argument are identified, and the three controversial premises are defended against recent rejoinders. Particular attention is given to defending the argument from theorists who advocate that perceptualist models either adequately explain the irrationality of recalcitrant emotions or show that recalcitrant emotions are not, in fact, irrational.
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  • Supererogation and the Case Against an 'Overall Ought'.Elizabeth Ventham - forthcoming - American Philosophical Quarterly.
    This paper argues against a kind of 'overall ought'. The main argument is a version of the paradox of supererogation. The problem is this: obligating an agent to do what’s overall best will, when that differs from what’s morally best, obligate the agent not to do what’s morally best. This, the paper will argue, is implausible. For each of four possible interpretations of this overall ought concept, it will either come across a form of this paradox or no longer look (...)
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  • And So On. Two Theories of Regress Arguments in Philosophy.Jan Willem Wieland - 2012 - Dissertation,
    This dissertation is on infinite regress arguments in philosophy. Its main goals are to explain what such arguments from many distinct philosophical debates have in common, and to provide guidelines for using and evaluating them. Two theories are reviewed: the Paradox Theory and the Failure Theory. According to the Paradox Theory, infinite regress arguments can be used to refute an existentially or universally quantified statement (e.g. to refute the statement that at least one discussion is settled, or the statement that (...)
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  • Akrasía inversa genuina de la primera persona.Ignasi Llobera Trias - 2017 - Pensamiento 73 (275):61-75.
    Tradicionalmente se considera que un acto akrático es moralmente peor que el acto que el agente decidió realizar en primer término. Contra esto, Arpaly acuña la expresión «akrasía inversa» para referirse a los actos akráticos que son moralmente mejores que el acto que elagente había decidido realizar previamente. El análisis del concepto de akrasía inversa hecho por Arpaly resulta insuficiente; lo desarrolla mayormente a través de ejemplos tan célebres como el de Huckleberry Finn. Aquí se analizan las razones por las (...)
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  • Deteriora sequor. Interpretación neurofilosófica del fenómeno de la akrasía.Pedro Jesús Teruel - 2016 - Pensamiento 72 (273):865-880.
    La aproximación al fenómeno de la akrasía desde la interpretación filosófica de los datos neurocientíficos trae consigo rendimientos teóricos y prácticos. Entre los teóricos se encuentra la fundamentación neurofisiológica de las acciones acráticas, con el consiguiente aumento de capacidad explicativa respecto de las argumentaciones clásicas ligadas a la noción de hábito. Entre los prácticos se halla su proyección terapéutica en el campo de la psicología y la psiquiatría. Sobre esta base propongo dicha aproximación como teoría con valor explicativo y predictivo (...)
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  • Good and Good For.Sergio Tenenbaum - 2010 - In Desire, Practical Reason, and the Good. Oxford University Press.
  • The Possibility of Practical Reason.J. David Velleman - 1996 - Ethics 106 (4):694-726.
  • Reply to Ferrero.Kirk Ludwig - 2015 - Methode: Analytic Perspectives 4 (6):75-87.
    I respond to Ferrero’s comments on “What are Conditional Intentions?” in three parts. In the first, I address three arguments Ferrero gives for his account and against mine, the argument from requirement of a formal distinction, the argument from continuity, and the argument from the rational pressures of intention. In the second, I raise some problems for Ferrero’s views on the basis drawing out its consequences and testing those against cases. In the third, I consider in a more theoretical vein (...)
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  • Akrasia and Irrationality.Sergio Tenenbaum - 2010 - In Sandis O'Connor (ed.), A Companion to the Philosophy of Action. Blackwell. pp. 274-282.
  • Rationality and the Structure of the Self, Volume I: The Humean Conception.Adrian M. S. Piper - 2008 - APRA Foundation Berlin.
    The Humean conception of the self consists in the belief-desire model of motivation and the utility-maximizing model of rationality. This conception has dominated Western thought in philosophy and the social sciences ever since Hobbes’ initial formulation in Leviathan and Hume’s elaboration in the Treatise of Human Nature. Bentham, Freud, Ramsey, Skinner, Allais, von Neumann and Morgenstern and others have added further refinements that have brought it to a high degree of formal sophistication. Late twentieth century moral philosophers such as Rawls, (...)
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  • Donald Davidson.Ernest Lepore & Kirk Ludwig - 2004 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 28 (1):309–333.
    This chapter reviews the major contributions of Donald Davidson to philosophy in the 20th century.
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  • Why Consequentialism’s "Compelling Idea" Is Not.Paul Hurley - 2017 - Social Theory and Practice 43 (1):29-54.
    Many consequentialists take their theory to be anchored by a deeply intuitive idea, the “Compelling Idea” that it is always permissible to promote the best outcome. I demonstrate that this Idea is not, in fact, intuitive at all either in its agent-neutral or its evaluator-relative form. There are deeply intuitive ideas concerning the relationship of deontic to telic evaluation, but the Compelling Idea is at best a controversial interpretation of such ideas, not itself one of them. Because there is no (...)
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  • Guise of the Good.Sergio Tenenbaum - 2013 - In Hugh LaFollette (ed.), The International Encyclopedia of Ethics. Wiley-Blackwell.
  • The Rational Significance of Desire.Avery Archer - 2013 - Dissertation, Columbia University
    My dissertation addresses the question "do desires provide reasons?" I present two independent lines of argument in support of the conclusion that they do not. The first line of argument emerges from the way I circumscribe the concept of a desire. Complications aside, I conceive of a desire as a member of a family of attitudes that have imperative content, understood as content that displays doability-conditions rather than truth-conditions. Moreover, I hold that an attitude may provide reasons only if it (...)
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  • The Guise of Reasons.Alex Gregory - 2013 - American Philosophical Quarterly 50 (1):63-72.
    In this paper it is argued that we should amend the traditional understanding of the view known as the guise of the good. The guise of the good is traditionally understood as the view that we only want to act in ways that we believe to be good in some way. But it is argued that a more plausible view is that we only want to act in ways that we believe we have normative reason to act in. This change (...)
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  • Deference and Uniqueness.Christopher J. G. Meacham - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (3):709-732.
    Deference principles are principles that describe when, and to what extent, it’s rational to defer to others. Recently, some authors have used such principles to argue for Evidential Uniqueness, the claim that for every batch of evidence, there’s a unique doxastic state that it’s permissible for subjects with that total evidence to have. This paper has two aims. The first aim is to assess these deference-based arguments for Evidential Uniqueness. I’ll show that these arguments only work given a particular kind (...)
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  • A Critique of Alfred R Mele’s Work on Autonomous Agents: From Self-Control to Autonomy. [REVIEW]Pujarini Das - 2018 - Journal of Indian Council of Philosophical Research, Springer India:1995.
    The book, Autonomous Agents: From Self-Control to Autonomy (1995), by Alfred R. Mele, deals primarily with two main concepts, “self-control” and “individual autonomy,” and the relationship between them. The book is divided into two parts: (1) a view of self-control, the self-controlled person, and behaviour manifesting self-control, and (2) a view of personal autonomy, the autonomous person, and autonomous behaviour. Mele (Ibid.) defines self-control as the opposite of the Aristotelian concept of akrasia, or the contrary of akrasia, which implies weakness (...)
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  • The Normativity of Rationality.Benjamin Kiesewetter - 2017 - Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    Kiesewetter defends the normativity of rationality by presenting a new solution to the problems that arise from the common assumption that we ought to be rational. He provides a defence of a reason-response conception of rationality, an evidence-relative account of reason, and an explanation of structural irrationality in relation to these accounts.
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  • Embodied Akrasia: James on Motivation and Weakness of Will.Kyle Bromhall - 2018 - William James Studies 14 (1):26-53.
    This paper presents an account of akrasia, drawn from the work of William James, that sees akrasia as neither a rational failing (as with most philosophical accounts) nor a moral failing (as with early Christian accounts), but rather a necessary by-product of our status as biological beings. By examining James’s related accounts of motivation and action, I argue that akratic actions occur when an agent attempts to act against her settled habits, but fails to do so. This makes akrasia a (...)
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  • Passionate Akrasia.Michael T. Michael - 2019 - Philosophia 47 (3):569-585.
    The standard philosophical account of akratic action is that it is action contrary to one’s current better judgment about what to do. While respecting the philosophical debate associated with this conception of akrasia, I attempt to offer a different perspective on the subject by suggesting that akratic action could be conceived more broadly as “action without due self-restraint.” Under such a broader conception, there may be several varieties of akrasia. Following Frank Jackson, I propose that a paradigmatic variety of akrasia (...)
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  • Agency Implies Weakness of Will.J. Gregory Keller - 2008 - ProtoSociology 25:225-240.
    Notions of agency and of weakness of will clearly seem to be related to one another. This essay takes on a rather modest task in relation to current discussion of these topics; it seeks to establish the following claim: If A is a normal human agent, weakness of will is possible for A. The argument relies on demonstrating that certain necessary conditions for normal human agency are at least roughly equivalent to certain sufficient conditions for weakness of will. The connection (...)
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  • A Realistic Practical Conclusion.Patricio A. Fernandez - 2015 - American Philosophical Quarterly 52 (2):115-128.
    At least for those who uphold the rationality of morality, ethics and practical reason are not two distinct topics: an ethically sound agent is one whose practical reason functions as it should. Take, for instance, the greatest historical figures. Aristotle claimed that no virtue of character can exist without practical wisdom—the excellence of practical, deliberative reason. And Kant thought that the categorical imperative, the ultimate moral principle that governs a good will, was at the same time the fundamental principlof practical (...)
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  • Ambivalence, Emotional Perceptions, and the Concern with Objectivity.Hili Razinsky - 2017 - Symposion: Theoretical and Applied Inquiries in Philosophy and Social Sciences 4 (2):211-228.
    Hili Razinsky, free downlad at link. ABSTRACT: Emotional perceptions are objectivist (objectivity-directed or cognitive) and conscious, both attributes suggesting they cannot be ambivalent. Yet perceptions, including emotional perceptions of value, allow for strictly objectivist ambivalence in which a person unitarily perceives the object in mutually undermining ways. Emotional perceptions became an explicandum of emotion for philosophers who are sensitive to the unique conscious character of emotion, impressed by the objectivist character of perceptions, and believe that the perceptual account solves a (...)
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  • Aristotle on the Structure of Akratic Action.Elena Cagnoli Fiecconi - 2018 - Phronesis 63 (3):229-256.
    _ Source: _Volume 63, Issue 3, pp 229 - 256 I argue that, for Aristotle, akratic actions are against one’s general commitment to act in accordance with one’s correct conception of one’s ends overall. Only some akratic actions are also against one’s correct decision to perform a particular action. This thesis explains Aristotle’s views on impetuous _akrasia_, weak _akrasia_, stubborn opinionated action and inverse _akrasia_. In addition, it sheds light on Aristotle’s account of practical rationality. Rational actions are coherent primarily (...)
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  • Consistency and Akrasia in Plato's Protagoras.Raphael Woolf - 2002 - Phronesis 47 (3):224-252.
    Relatively little attention has been paid to Socrates' argument against akrasia in Plato's "Protagoras" as an example of Socratic method. Yet seen from this perspective the argument has some rather unusual features: in particular, the presence of an impersonal interlocutor ("the many") and the absence of the crisp and explicit argumentation that is typical of Socratic elenchus. I want to suggest that these features are problematic, considerably more so than has sometimes been supposed, and to offer a reading of the (...)
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  • The Nature of Desire.Federico Lauria & Julien Deonna (eds.) - 2017 - New York, USA: Oxford University Press.
    Desires matter. What are desires? Many believe that desire is a motivational state: desiring is being disposed to act. This conception aligns with the functionalist approach to desire and the standard account of desire's role in explaining action. According to a second influential approach, however, desire is first and foremost an evaluation: desiring is representing something as good. After all, we seem to desire things under the guise of the good. Which understanding of desire is more accurate? Is the guise (...)
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  • Davidson’s Meta-Normative Naturalism.Robert Myers - 2019 - Journal for the History of Analytical Philosophy 7 (2).
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  • 1. Ulysses and the Sirens.Bruno Verbeek - 2007 - In Fabienne Peter (ed.), Rationality and Commitment. Oxford University Press, Usa. pp. 150.
     
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  • Spinoza on the Problem of Akrasia.Eugene Marshall - 2010 - European Journal of Philosophy 18 (1):41-59.
    : Two common ways of explaining akrasia will be presented, one which focuses on strength of desire and the other which focuses on action issuing from practical judgment. Though each is intuitive in a certain way, they both fail as explanations of the most interesting cases of akrasia. Spinoza 's own thoughts on bondage and the affects follow, from which a Spinozist explanation of akrasia is constructed. This account is based in Spinoza 's mechanistic psychology of cognitive affects. Because Spinoza (...)
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  • Lessons From Akrasia in Substance Misuse: A Clinicophilosophical Discussion.L. Radoilska & K. D. Fletcher - unknown
    This article explores the philosophical concept of akrasia, also known as weakness of will, and demonstrates its relevance to clinical practice. In particular, it challenges an implicit notion of control over one’s actions that might impede recovery from substance misuse. Reflecting on three fictional case vignettes, we show how philosophical work on akrasia helps avoid this potentially harmful notion of control by supporting a holistic engagement with people for whom substance misuse is a problem. We argue that such engagement enhances (...)
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  • Bibliography.Richard Holton - 2000 - Philosophical Inquiry 22 (4):112-112.
    We aim to find a middle path between disease models of addiction, and those that treat addictive choices as choices like any other. We develop an account of the disease element by focussing on the idea that dopamine works primarily to lay down dispositional intrinsic desires. Addictive substances artifically boost the dopamine signal, and thereby lay down intrinsic desires for the substances that persist through withdrawal, and in the face of beliefs that they are worthless. The result is cravings that (...)
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  • Doxastic Self-Control.Sarah K. Paul - 2015 - American Philosophical Quarterly 52 (2):145-58.
    This paper discusses the possibility of autonomy in our epistemic lives, and the importance of the concept of the first person in weathering fluctuations in our epistemic perspective over time.
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  • Epistemic Akrasia, Higher-Order Evidence, and Charitable Belief Attribution.Hamid Vahid - 2015 - International Journal for the Study of Skepticism 5 (4):296-314.
  • ¿Es la ἀκρασία posible en las "Leyes"? Derivas platónicas en torno a un problema socrático1.Esteban Bieda - 2018 - Revista de Filosofía 43 (2):183-200.
    La filosofía política platónica está atravesada por una marcada preocupación epistemológica, sobre cuya base Platón adopta el así llamado “intelectualismo socrático”, lo cual implica un rechazo tajante del actuar incontinente o _akrasía_. En el presente trabajo intentaremos mostrar que el propio Platón llevó adelante una revisión de dicha posición, ante todo debido a un cambio profundo en su concepción de la naturaleza humana en el diálogo _Leyes_.
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  • "Ought" and the Perspective of the Agent.Benjamin Kiesewitter - 2011 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 5 (3):1-24.
    Objectivists and perspectivists disagree about the question of whether what an agent ought to do depends on the totality of facts or on the agent’s limited epistemic perspective. While objectivism fails to account for normative guidance, perspectivism faces the challenge of explaining phenomena (occurring most notably in advice, but also in first-personal deliberation) in which the use of “ought” is geared to evidence that is better than the evidence currently available to the agent. This paper aims to defend perspectivism by (...)
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