Is unpleasantness intrinsic to unpleasant experiences

Philosophical Studies 99 (2):187-210 (2000)
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Abstract

Unpleasant experiences include backaches, moments of nausea, moments of nervousness, phantom pains, and so on. What does their unpleasantness consist in? The unpleasantness of an experience has been thought to consist in: (1) its representing bodily damage; (2) its inclining the subject to fight its continuation; (3) the subject's disliking it; (4) features intrinsic to it. I offer compelling objections to (1) and (2) and less compelling objections to (3). I defend (4) against five challenging objections and offer two reasons to believe it. Hence, I advocate "Intrinsic Nature," the idea that unpleasantness is intrinsic to unpleasant experiences.

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Stuart Rachels
University of Alabama

Citations of this work

What makes pains unpleasant?David Bain - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 166 (1):69-89.
Why Take Painkillers?David Bain - 2019 - Noûs 53 (2):462-490.
The distinctive feeling theory of pleasure.Ben Bramble - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 162 (2):201-217.
How to Unify Theories of Sensory Pleasure: An Adverbialist Proposal.Murat Aydede - 2014 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 5 (1):119-133.
The reduction of sensory pleasure to desire.Chris Heathwood - 2007 - Philosophical Studies 133 (1):23-44.

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References found in this work

Reasons and Persons.Derek Parfit - 1984 - Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press.
A Materialist Theory of the Mind.D. M. Armstrong - 1968 - New York: Routledge. Edited by Ted Honderich.
The sources of normativity.Christine M. Korsgaard - 1996 - New York: Cambridge University Press. Edited by Onora O'Neill.
A Treatise of Human Nature (1739-40).David Hume - 1969 - Mineola, N.Y.: Oxford University Press. Edited by Ernest Campbell Mossner.

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