Australasian Journal of Philosophy 83 (4):487 – 504 (2005)

Authors
Chris Heathwood
University of Colorado, Boulder
Abstract
The desire-satisfaction theory of welfare says, roughly, that one's life goes well to the extent that one's desires are satisfied. On standard 'actualist' versions of the theory, it doesn't matter what you desire. So long as you are getting what you actually want – whatever it is – things are going well for you. There is widespread agreement that these standard versions are incorrect, because we can desire things that are bad for us -– in other words, because there are 'defective desires'. The aim of this paper is to defend the actualist desire-satisfaction theory against the problem of defective desires. I aim to show how the theory can accommodate the obvious fact that we can desire things that are bad for us. Admittedly, there are kinds of allegedly defective desire the theory cannot accommodate, but these desires, I argue, turn out not to be defective in the relevant way.
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DOI 10.1080/00048400500338690
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References found in this work BETA

Reasons and Persons.Derek Parfit - 1984 - Oxford University Press.
Principia Ethica.G. E. Moore - 1903 - Dover Publications.
Reasons and Persons.Joseph Margolis - 1986 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 47 (2):311-327.
The Methods of Ethics.Henry Sidgwick - 1871 - Thoemmes Press.

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Citations of this work BETA

Experimental Moral Philosophy.Mark Alfano, Don Loeb & Alex Plakias - 2018 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy:1-32.
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