Practical reasoning, the first person and impartialism about reasons

This paper considers the problem posed for impartialism about reasons by the claim that practical reasoning is essentially first personal. This argument, first put forward by Bernard Williams, has an obscure rationale. Barry Stroud has suggested that in the only sense in which it is true it is misrepresents the issue which is that substituting in a particular identity to a conclusion true of anyone can change the degree of support for a practical conclusion. This paper develops a complementary line of argument. Developing Stroud’s point and interpreting it as highlighting the non-monotonicity of practical reasoning, it is argued that the distinguishing feature of practical reasoning is that it terminates in an action as its conclusion. Actions are the expression of one’s all things considered judgement and the expression of intentional states in action. The obvious rejoinders to this view are canvassed and deflected; this Aristotelian thesis is independently motivated as making best sense of the fact that practical questions may “turn out variously”.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Download options
Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 28,233
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Walker on the Voluntariness of Judgment.Christian Stein - 1997 - Inquiry : An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 40 (2):175 – 186.
Constructivism About Practical Reasons.Aaron James - 2007 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 74 (2):302–325.
The Voices of Reason.Chrisoula Andreou - 2005 - American Philosophical Quarterly 42 (1):33 - 45.

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

36 ( #143,695 of 2,172,874 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

2 ( #172,512 of 2,172,874 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums