Philosophical Studies 157 (3):341–360 (2012)
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 about an ordinary concept here is one apt for empirical investigation. We evaluate Mele’s studies and report some experiments of our own in order to investigate what in the world the ordinary concept of weakness of will is. We conclude that neither Mele nor Holton (previously) was quite right and offer a tentative proposal of our own: the ordinary notion is more like a prototype or cluster concept whose application is affected by a variety of factors.
|Keywords||Knobe effect resolution experimental philosophy side-effect effect|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
References found in this work BETA
Practical Interests, Relevant Alternatives, and Knowledge Attributions: An Empirical Study.Joshua May, Walter Sinnott-Armstrong, Jay G. Hull & Aaron Zimmerman - 2010 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 1 (2):265–273.
The Pervasive Impact of Moral Judgment.Dean Pettit & Joshua Knobe - 2009 - Mind and Language 24 (5):586-604.
How Is Weakness of the Will Possible?Donald Davidson - 1970 - In Joel Feinberg (ed.), Moral Concepts. Oxford University Press.
Citations of this work BETA
Does Disgust Influence Moral Judgment?Joshua May - 2014 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 92 (1):125-141.
Beliefs About the True Self Explain Asymmetries Based on Moral Judgment.George E. Newman, Julian De Freitas & Joshua Knobe - 2015 - Cognitive Science 39 (1):96-125.
The Evaluative Nature of the Folk Concepts of Weakness and Strength of Will.Paulo Sousa & Carlos Mauro - 2013 - Philosophical Psychology 28 (4):487-509.
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