European Journal of Philosophy 29 (4):685-698 (2021)

Abstract
The orthodox definition of hope suffers from an exclusion problem: it is unable to exclude subjects without hope. In fact, the orthodox definition even allows for despair to be falsely classified as hope. This problem suggests two basic desiderata for a successful analysis of hope; it should solve the exclusion problem, and it should have the resources to explain why, in a given situation, a subject does or does not form a hope. Bearing these desiderata in mind, I assess two recent hope-accounts offered by Jack M. C. Kwong and Cheshire Calhoun. I then offer my own view, which is based on the Jamesian notion of a “live possibility”. I suggest that a possibility needs to reach a certain probability-threshold in order to count as live, and according to my account, to hope is to desire the truth of such a live possibility. This view is well equipped to solve the exclusion problem, and it can explain why a subject does or does not hope.
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Reprint years 2021
DOI 10.1111/ejop.12584
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References found in this work BETA

Elusive Knowledge.David K. Lewis - 1996 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 74 (4):549 – 567.
Finding Hope.Michael Milona - 2019 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 49 (5):710-729.
A Perceptual Theory of Hope.Michael Milona & Katie Stockdale - 2018 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 5.
The Value of Hope.Luc Bovens - 1999 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 59 (3):667-681.
What is It to Lose Hope?Matthew Ratcliffe - 2013 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 12 (4):597-614.

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Citations of this work BETA

Beyond Belief : On the Nature and Rationality of Agnostic Religion.Carl-Johan Palmqvist - 2020 - Printed in Sweden by Media-Tryck, Lund University.
The Focus Theory of Hope.Andrew Chignell - forthcoming - Philosophical Quarterly.

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