Neil Sinhababu National University of Singapore
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Affiliations
  • Faculty, National University of Singapore
  • PhD, University of Texas at Austin, 2008.

Areas of specialization

Areas of interest
  • None specified

My philosophical views

About me
I like to think about desire, metaphysically interesting romantic relationships, Thus Spoke Zarathustra, and pleasure.
My works
27 found

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  1. Ethical Reductionism.Neil Sinhababu - manuscript
    I argue that ethical reductionism is better than nonreductionism at fitting moral properties into successful scientific explanations and doesn't face the kind of multiple realizability that threatens reductionism in philosophy of mind.
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  2. The Epistemic Argument for Hedonism.Neil Sinhababu - manuscript
    I defend hedonism about moral value by first presenting an argument for moral skepticism, and then showing that phenomenal introspection gives us a unique way to defeat the skeptical argument and establish pleasure's goodness.
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  3. Divine Fine-Tuning Vs. Electrons in Love.Neil Sinhababu - forthcoming - American Philosophical Quarterly.
    I present a novel objection to fine-tuning arguments for God's existence: the metaphysical possibility of different psychophysical laws allows any values of the physical constants to support intelligent life forms, like protons and electrons that are in love.
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  4. In Defense of Partisanship.Neil Sinhababu - forthcoming - In David Killoren, Emily Crookston & Jonathan Trerise (eds.), Ethics in Politics: New Papers on the Rights and Obligations of Political Agents. Routledge.
    This essay explains why partisanship is justified in contemporary America and environments with similar voting systems and coalition structures. It explains how political parties operate, how helping a party succeed can be a goal of genuine ethical significance, and how trusting one party while mistrusting another can be a reliable route to true belief about important political issues.
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  5.  72
    Nietzschean Pragmatism.Neil Sinhababu - 2017 - Journal of Nietzsche Studies 48 (1):56-70.
    Nietzsche holds that one should believe what best promotes life, and he also accepts the correspondence theory of truth. I’ll call this conjunction of views Nietzschean pragmatism. This article provides textual evidence for attributing this pragmatist position to Nietzsche and explains how his broader metaethical views led him to it.The following section introduces Nietzschean pragmatism, discussing how Nietzsche expresses it in BGE, and distinguishing it from William James’s pragmatism about truth. The second section explains how Nietzsche’s skepticism about values that (...)
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  6. Imagination and Belief.Neil Sinhababu - 2016 - In Amy Kind (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Imagination. pp. 111-123.
    This chapter considers the nature of imagination and belief, exploring how deeply these two states of mind differ. It first addresses a range of cognitive and motivational differences between imagination and belief which suggest that they're fundamentally different states of mind. Then it addresses imaginative immersion, delusions, and the different norms we apply to the two mental states, which some theorists regard as providing support for a more unified picture of imagination and belief.
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  7. Virtue, Desire, and Silencing Reasons.Neil Sinhababu - 2016 - In Iskra Fileva (ed.), Questions of Character. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 158-168.
    John McDowell claims that virtuous people recognize moral reasons using a perceptual capacity that doesn't include desire. I show that the phenomena he cites are better explained if desire makes us see considerations favoring its satisfaction as reasons. The salience of moral considerations to the virtuous, like the salience of food to the hungry, exemplifies the emotional and attentional effects of desire. I offer a desire-based account of how we can follow uncodifiable rules of common-sense morality and how some reasons (...)
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  8. Advantages of Propositionalism.Neil Sinhababu - 2015 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 96 (1):165-180.
    Propositionalism is the view that the contents of intentional attitudes have a propositional structure. Objectualism opposes propositionalism in allowing the contents of these attitudes to be ordinary objects or properties. Philosophers including Talbot Brewer, Paul Thagard, Michelle Montague, and Alex Grzankowski attack propositionalism about such attitudes as desire, liking, and fearing. This article defends propositionalism, mainly on grounds that it better supports psychological explanations.
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  9. Zarathustra’s Metaethics.Neil Sinhababu - 2015 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 45 (3):278-299.
    Nietzsche takes moral judgments to be false beliefs, and encourages us to pursue subjective nonmoral value arising from our passions. His view that strong and unified passions make one virtuous is mathematically derivable from this subjectivism and a conceptual analysis of virtue, explaining his evaluations of character and the nature of the Overman.
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  10. The Backward Clock, Truth-Tracking, and Safety.John N. Williams & Neil Sinhababu - 2015 - Journal of Philosophy 112 (1):46-55.
    We present Backward Clock, an original counterexample to Robert Nozick’s truth-tracking analysis of propositional knowledge, which works differently from other putative counterexamples and avoids objections to which they are vulnerable. We then argue that four ways of analysing knowledge in terms of safety, including Duncan Pritchard’s, cannot withstand Backward Clock either.
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  11.  83
    Would You Kill the Fat Man? The Trolley Problem and What Your Answer Tells Us About Right and Wrong, by David Edmonds. [REVIEW]Neil Sinhababu - 2014 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 92 (4):818-819.
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  12. Review: Christopher Janaway and Simon Robertson, Eds., Nietzsche, Naturalism, and Normativity. [REVIEW]Neil Sinhababu - 2014 - Ethics 124 (3):617-622,.
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  13.  23
    Review of Gemes and Richardson (Ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Nietzsche. [REVIEW]Neil Sinhababu - 2014 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2014.
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  14.  11
    Review Simon May, Ed.Nietzsche'sOn the Genealogy of Morality: A Critical Guide. Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 2011. X + 345 Pp. ISBN: 978-0-521-51880-2. Cloth, $86.66. [REVIEW]Neil Sinhababu - 2014 - Journal of Nietzsche Studies 45 (2):216-218.
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  15. Distinguishing Belief and Imagination.Neil Sinhababu - 2013 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 94 (2):152-165.
    Some philosophers (including Urmson, Humberstone, Shah, and Velleman) hold that believing that p distinctively involves applying a norm according to which the truth of p is a criterion for the success or correctness of the attitude. On this view, imagining and assuming differ from believing in that no such norm is applied. I argue against this view with counterexamples showing that applying the norm of truth is neither necessary nor sufficient for distinguishing believing from imagining and assuming. Then I argue (...)
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  16. The Desire‐Belief Account of Intention Explains Everything.Neil Sinhababu - 2013 - Noûs 47 (4):680-696.
    I argue that one intends that ϕ if one has a desire that ϕ and an appropriately related means-end belief. Opponents, including Setiya and Bratman, charge that this view can't explain three things. First, intentional action is accompanied by knowledge of what we are doing. Second, we can choose our reasons for action. Third, forming an intention settles a deliberative question about what to do, disposing us to cease deliberating about it. I show how the desire- belief view can explain (...)
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  17. Unequal Vividness and Double Effect.Neil Sinhababu - 2013 - Utilitas 25 (3):291-315.
    I argue that the Doctrine of Double Effect is accepted because of unreliable processes of belief-formation, making it unacceptably likely to be mistaken. We accept the doctrine because we more vividly imagine intended consequences of our actions than merely foreseen ones, making our aversions to the intended harms more violent, and making us judge that producing the intended harms is morally worse. This explanation fits psychological evidence from Schnall and others, and recent neuroscientific research from Greene, Klein, Kahane, and Schaich (...)
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  18.  28
    Sneddon , Andrew . Like-Minded: Externalism and Moral Psychology . Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2011. Pp. 282. [REVIEW]Neil Sinhababu - 2012 - Ethics 122 (4):824-829.
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  19. The Humean Theory of Practical Irrationality.Neil Sinhababu - 2011 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 6 (1):1-13.
    Christine Korsgaard has argued that Humean views about action and practical rationality jointly imply the impossibility of irrational action. According to the Humean theory of action, agents do what maximizes expected desire-satisfaction. According to the Humean theory of rationality, it is rational for agents to do what maximizes expected desire-satisfaction. Thus Humeans are committed to the impossibility of practical irrationality – an unacceptable consequence. -/- I respond by developing Humean views to explain how we can act irrationally. Humeans about action (...)
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  20.  43
    Review of Robert Pippin, Nietzsche, Psychology, and First Philosophy[REVIEW]Neil Sinhababu - 2010 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2010 (9).
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  21.  32
    Review of James Luchte (Ed.), Nietzsche's Thus Spoke Zarathustra: Before Sunrise[REVIEW]Neil Sinhababu - 2009 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2009 (4).
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  22. Possible Girls.Neil Sinhababu - 2008 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 89 (2):254–260.
    I argue that if David Lewis’ modal realism is true, modal realists from different possible worlds can fall in love with each other. I offer a method for uniquely picking out possible people who are in love with us and not with our counterparts. Impossible lovers and trans-world love letters are considered. Anticipating objections, I argue that we can stand in the right kinds of relations to merely possible people to be in love with them and that ending a trans-world (...)
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  23. Introduction.Brian Leiter & Neil Sinhababu - 2007 - In Brian Leiter & Neil Sinhababu (eds.), Nietzsche and Morality. Oxford University Press.
     
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  24.  73
    Nietzsche and Morality.Brian Leiter & Neil Sinhababu (eds.) - 2007 - Oxford University Press.
    This volume capitalizes on a growth of interest in Nietzsche's work on morality from two sides -- from scholars of the history of philosophy and from ...
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  25. Vengeful Thinking and Moral Epistemology.Neil Sinhababu - 2007 - In Brian Leiter & Neil Sinhababu (eds.), Nietzsche and Morality. Oxford University Press. pp. 262.
  26.  10
    The Desire-Belief Account of Intention Explains Everything.N. Sinhababu - unknown
  27.  11
    Unequal Vividness and Double Effect.N. Sinhababu - unknown
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