Authors
Julian Savulescu
Oxford University
Abstract
Philosophers and psychologists have been attracted to two differing accounts of addictive motivation. In this paper, we investigate these two accounts and challenge their mutual claim that addictions compromise a person’s self-control. First, we identify some incompatibilities between this claim of reduced self-control and the available evidence from various disciplines. A critical assessment of the evidence weakens the empirical argument for reduced autonomy. Second, we identify sources of unwarranted normative bias in the popular theories of addiction that introduce systematic errors in interpreting the evidence. By eliminating these errors, we are able to generate a minimal, but correct account, of addiction that presumes addicts to be autonomous in their addictive behavior, absent further evidence to the contrary. Finally, we explore some of the implications of this minimal, correct view
Keywords addiction   autonomy   self-control   neuroethics   dependence   liberty
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DOI 10.1353/ppp.0.0282
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References found in this work BETA

The Metaphysics of Morals.Immanuel Kant - 1797/1996 - Cambridge University Press.
Intention and Weakness of Will.Richard Holton - 1999 - Journal of Philosophy 96 (5):241.
Responsibility and Control: A Theory of Moral Responsibility.John Martin Fischer - 1998 - Philosophical and Phenomenological Research 61 (2):459-466.
Practical Unreason.Philip Pettit & Michael Smith - 1993 - Mind 102 (405):53-79.

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Citations of this work BETA

Psychopathology and the Ability to Do Otherwise.Hanna Pickard - 2015 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 90 (1):135-163.
The Purpose in Chronic Addiction.Hanna Pickard - 2012 - American Journal of Bioethics Neuroscience 3 (2):40-49.
Autonomy, Rationality, and Contemporary Bioethics.Jonathan Pugh - 2020 - Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

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