Authors
Simon Shogry
Oxford University
Abstract
The early Stoics diagnose vicious agents with various psychological diseases, e.g. love of money and love of wine. Such diseases are characterised as false evaluative opinions that lead the agent to form emotional impulses for certain objects, e.g. money and wine. Scholars have therefore analysed psychological diseases simply as dispositions for assent. This interpretation is incomplete, I argue, and should be augmented with the claim that psychological disease also affects what kind of action-guiding impressions are created prior to giving assent. This proposal respects the Stoic insistence that impression-formation, no less than assent, is an activity of reason. Insofar as the wine-lover’s reason is corrupted in a different way from the money-lover’s, the two vicious agents will form different action-guiding impressions when faced with similar stimuli. Here I juxtapose the Stoic account of expertise, on which experts form more precise action-guiding impressions compared to the amateur, in virtue of possessing a system of grasps (katalēpseis). So expertise enhances, whereas psychological disease degrades, the representational fidelity of the impressions that prefigure action. With these commitments, the Stoics can be seen to offer a nuanced and principled theory of cognitive penetration and to anticipate some recent proposals in epistemology and cognitive science.
Keywords passions  emotion  vice  impression  Stoic ethics  cognitive penetration
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DOI 10.1080/09608788.2021.1911784
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References found in this work BETA

The Birth of Belief.Jessica Moss & Whitney Schwab - 2019 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 57 (1):1-32.
Stoic Logic and Multiple Generality.Susanne Bobzien & Simon Shogry - 2020 - Philosophers' Imprint 20 (31):1-36.

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