Unknown pleasures

Philosophical Studies 177 (5):1333-1344 (2020)
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According to attitudinal theories of pleasure and pain, what makes a given sensation count as a pleasure or a pain is just the attitudes of the experiencing agent toward it. In a previous article, I objected to such theories on the grounds that they cannot account for pleasures and pains whose subjects are entirely unaware of them at the time of experience. Recently, Chris Heathwood and Fred Feldman, the two leading contemporary defenders of attitudinal theories, have responded to this objection, in very different ways. In this paper, I reconstruct and evaluate these responses. My conclusion is that neither response succeeds.

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Ben Bramble
Australian National University

Citations of this work

An Honest Look at Hybrid Theories of Pleasure.Daniel Pallies - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 178 (3):887-907.
From the Heterogeneity Problem to a Natural‐Kind Approach to Pleasure.Antonin Broi - 2023 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 104 (2):274-300.
Unconscious Pleasure as Dispositional Pleasure.James Fanciullo - forthcoming - Australasian Journal of Philosophy.

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References found in this work

The unreliability of naive introspection.Eric Schwitzgebel - 2006 - Philosophical Review 117 (2):245-273.
The distinctive feeling theory of pleasure.Ben Bramble - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 162 (2):201-217.
A New Defense of Hedonism about Well-Being.Ben Bramble - 2016 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 3.

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