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  1. We Are Optimizers: Re-Opening the Case for Rational Genuine Satisficing.Gary Goh - manuscript
    This paper critically reviews the arguments supporting rational genuine satisficing. The deconstructive effort unearths inherent problems with the position in both static and dynamic contexts. Many of these arguments build on Herbert Simon’s canonical arguments surrounding incommensurability and demandingness problems. Optimizing is re-constructed using the principles of instrumental satisficing to answer these charges. The resulting conception is both obviously undemanding and a recognizable response to focused decision making.
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  2. Are All Practical Reasons Based on Value?Benjamin Kiesewetter - manuscript
    According to an attractive and widely held view, all practical reasons can be explained in terms of the value of the action favoured by the reason. In this paper, I argue that this view incompatible with plausible assumptions about the practical reasons that go along with certain moral rights, including reasons to keep promises, reasons to obey legitimate authorities, reasons to respect property and reasons to distribute goods equally.
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  3. Maximalism Vs. Omnism About Reasons.Douglas W. Portmore - manuscript
    The performance of one option can entail the performance of another. For instance, I have the option of baking a pumpkin pie as well as the option of baking a pie, and the former entails the latter. Now, suppose that I have both reason to bake a pie and reason to bake a pumpkin pie. This raises the question: Which, if either, is more fundamental than the other? Do I have reason to bake a pie because I have reason to (...)
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  4. Acts, Attitudes, and Rational Choice.Douglas W. Portmore - manuscript
    In this paper, I argue that we have obligations not only to perform certain actions, but also to have certain attitudes (such as desires, beliefs, and intentions), and this despite the fact that we rarely, if ever, have direct voluntary control over our attitudes. Moreover, I argue that whatever obligations we have with respect to actions derive from our obligations with respect to attitudes. More specifically, I argue that an agent is obligated to perform an action if and only if (...)
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  5. Objectivity and Evaluation.Justin Clarke-Doane - forthcoming - In Christopher Cowie & Richard Rowland (eds.), Companions in Guilt Arguments in Metaethics.
    I this article, I introduce the notion of pluralism about an area, and use it to argue that the questions at the center of our normative lives are not settled by the facts -- even the normative facts. One upshot of the discussion is that the concepts of realism and objectivity, which are widely identified, are actually in tension. Another is that the concept of objectivity, not realism, should take center stage.
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  6. Reasoning with Unconditional Intention in Advance.Jens Gillessen - forthcoming - Journal of Philosophical Research.
    Suppose that you intend to go to the theater. Are you therein intending the unconditional proposition that you go to the theater? That would seem to be deeply irrational; after all, you surely do not intend to go if, for instance, in the next instant an earthquake is going to devastate the city. What we intend we do not intend ‘no matter what,’ it is often said. But if so—how can anyone ever rationally intend simply to perform an action of (...)
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  7. The Rationality of Near Bias Toward Both Future and Past Events.Preston Greene, Alex Holcombe, Andrew James Latham, Kristie Miller & James Norton - forthcoming - Review of Philosophy and Psychology:1-18.
    In recent years, a disagreement has erupted between two camps of philosophers about the rationality of bias toward the near (“near bias”) and bias toward the future (“future bias”). According to the traditional hybrid view, near bias is rationally impermissible, while future bias is either rationally permissible or obligatory. Time neutralists, meanwhile, argue that the hybrid view is untenable. Time-neutralists argue that those who reject near bias should reject both biases and embrace time-neutrality. To date, experimental work has focused on (...)
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  8. Hedonic and Non-Hedonic Bias Toward the Future.Preston Greene, Andrew James Latham, Kristie Miller & James Norton - forthcoming - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 99 (1):148-163.
    It has widely been assumed, by philosophers, that our first-person preferences regarding pleasurable and painful experiences exhibit a bias toward the future (positive and negative hedonic future-bias), and that our preferences regarding non-hedonic events (both positive and negative) exhibit no such bias (non-hedonic time-neutrality). Further, it has been assumed that our third-person preferences are always time-neutral. Some have attempted to use these (presumed) differential patterns of future-bias—different across kinds of events and perspectives—to argue for the irrationality of hedonic future-bias. This (...)
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  9. Belief, Faith, and Hope: On the Rationality of Long-Term Commitment.Elizabeth Jackson - forthcoming - Mind.
    I examine three attitudes: belief, faith, and hope. I argue that all three attitudes play the same role in rationalizing action. First, I explain two models of rational action—the decision-theory model and the belief-desire model. Both models entail there are two components of rational action: an epistemic component and a conative component. Then, using this framework, I show how belief, faith, and hope that p can all make it rational to accept, or act as if, p. I conclude by showing (...)
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  10. Which Emotional Behaviors Are Actions?Jean Moritz Müller & Hong Yu Wong - forthcoming - In Andrea Scarantino (ed.), Routledge Handbook of Emotion Theory. New York City, New York, USA:
    There is a wide range of things we do out of emotion. For example, we smile with pleasure, our voices drop when we are sad, we recoil in shock or jump for joy, we apologize to others out of remorse. It is uncontroversial that some of these behaviors are actions. Clearly, apologizing is an action if anything is. Things seem less clear in the case of other emotional behaviors. Intuitively, the drop in a sad person’s voice is something that happens (...)
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  11. The Eclipse of Instrumental Rationality.Kurt Sylvan - forthcoming - In The Routledge Handbook of Practical Reason.
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  12. Psychopathy, Agency, and Practical Reason.Monique Wonderly - forthcoming - In Ruth Chang & Kurt Sylvan (eds.), Routledge Handbook of Practical Reason. New York, USA: Routledge.
    Philosophers have urged that considerations about the psychopath’s capacity for practical rationality can help to advance metaethical debates. These debates include the role of rational faculties in moral judgment and action, the relationship between moral judgment and moral motivation, and the capacities required for morally responsible agency. I discuss how the psychopath’s capacity for practical reason features in these debates, and I identify several takeaway lessons from the relevant literature. Specifically, I show how the insights contained therein can illuminate the (...)
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  13. Stupid Goodness.Garrett Cullity - 2020 - In Karen Jones & Francois Schroeter (eds.), The Many Moral Rationalisms. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    In Paradise Lost, Satan’s first sight of Eve in Eden renders him “Stupidly good”: his state is one of admirable yet inarticulate responsiveness to reasons. Turning from fiction to real life, I argue that this is an important moral phenomenon, but one that has limits. The essay examines three questions about the relation between having a reason and saying what it is – between normativity and articulacy. Is it possible to have and respond to morally relevant reasons without being able (...)
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  14. The Sunk Cost "Fallacy" Is Not a Fallacy.Ryan Doody - 2020 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 6:1153-1190.
    Business and Economic textbooks warn against committing the Sunk Cost Fallacy: you, rationally, shouldn't let unrecoverable costs influence your current decisions. In this paper, I argue that this isn't, in general, correct. Sometimes it's perfectly reasonable to wish to carry on with a project because of the resources you've already sunk into it. The reason? Given that we're social creatures, it's not unreasonable to care about wanting to act in such a way so that a plausible story can be told (...)
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  15. Meghan Sullivan, Time Biases: A Theory of Rational Planning and Personal Persistence.Travis Timmerman - 2020 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 17 (6):690-694.
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  16. If There Are No Diachronic Norms of Rationality, Why Does It Seem Like There Are?Ryan Doody - 2019 - Res Philosophica 96 (2):141-173.
    I offer an explanation for why certain sequences of decisions strike us as irrational while others do not. I argue that we have a standing desire to tell flattering yet plausible narratives about ourselves, and that cases of diachronic behavior that strike us as irrational are those in which you had the opportunity to hide something unflattering and failed to do so.
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  17. An Existential Perspective on Addiction Treatment: A Logic-Based Therapy Case Study.Guy du Plessis - 2019 - International Journal of Philosophical Practice 5 (1):1-32.
    In this essay I argue that a comprehensive understanding of addiction and its treatment should include an existential perspective. I provide a brief overview of an existential perspective of addiction and recovery, which will contextualize the remainder of the essay. I then present a case study of how the six-step philosophical practice method of Logic-Based Therapy can assist with issues that often arise in addiction treatment framed through an existential perspective.
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  18. On the Rationality of Vow‐Making.Alida Liberman - 2019 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 100 (3):881-900.
    I offer a philosophical account of vowing and the rationality of vow-making. I argue that vows are most productively understood as exceptionless resolutions that do not have any excusing conditions. I then articulate an apparent problem for exceptionless vow-making: how can it be rational to bind yourself unconditionally, when circumstances might change unexpectedly and make it the case that vow-keeping no longer makes sense for you? As a solution, I propose that vows can be rational to make only if they (...)
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  19. Contractualism for Us As We Are.Nicholas Southwood - 2019 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 99 (3):529-547.
    A difficult problem for contractualists is how to provide an interpretation of the contractual situation that is both subject to appropriately stringent constraints and yet also appropriately sensitive to certain features of us as we actually are. My suggestion is that we should embrace a model of contractualism that is structurally analogous to the “advice model” of the ideal observer theory famously proposed by Michael Smith (1994; 1995). An advice model of contractualism is appealing since it promises to deliver a (...)
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  20. Feasibility as a Constraint on ‘Ought All-Things-Considered’, But Not on ‘Ought as a Matter of Justice’?Nicholas Southwood - 2019 - Philosophical Quarterly 69 (276):598-616.
    It is natural and relatively common to suppose that feasibility is a constraint on what we ought to do all-things-considered but not a constraint on what we ought to do as a matter of justice. I show that the combination of these claims entails an implausible picture of the relation between feasibility and desirability given an attractive understanding of the relation between what we ought to do as a matter of justice and what we ought to do all-things-considered.
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  21. The Logical Structure of Philosophy Psychology, Sociology, Anthropology Religion, Politics, Economics Literature and History - Articles and Reviews 2006-2019.Michael Richard Starks - 2019 - Las Vegas, NV USA: Reality Press.
    It is my contention that the table of intentionality (rationality, mind, thought, language, personality etc.) that features prominently here describes more or less accurately, or at least serves as an heuristic for, how we think and behave, and so it encompasses not merely philosophy and psychology, but everything else (history, literature, mathematics, politics etc.). Note especially that intentionality and rationality as I (along with Searle, Wittgenstein and others) view it, includes both conscious deliberative linguistic System 2 and unconscious automated prelinguistic (...)
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  22. Kant e a Defesa da Causa de Deus: algumas considerações acerca do opúsculo kantiano sobre a teodiceia.Bruno Cunha - 2018 - Ética E Filosofia Política 1 (21):5-21.
    The article On the Miscarriage of All Philosophical Trials in Theodicy was published in 1791 on the pages of the monthly periodical berlinische Monatsschrift. By itself, the title of the article already seems to us quite enlightening. What would it be but a criticism of every attempt to justify the God's cause? Nevertheless, there are evidences that there is much more at stake. Thus, the purpose of this paper is to raise the question about the true meaning of the Kant`s (...)
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  23. Armin Schulz, Efficient Cognition. [REVIEW]Zoe Drayson - 2018 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews:online.
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  24. Constitutivism About Practical Reasons.Paul Katsafanas - 2018 - In Daniel Star (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Reasons and Normativity. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 367-394.
    This paper introduces constitutivism about practical reason, which is the view that we can justify certain normative claims by showing that agents become committed to these claims simply in virtue of acting. According to this view, action has a certain structural feature – a constitutive aim, principle, or standard – that both constitutes events as actions and generates a standard of assessment for action. We can use this standard of assessment to derive normative claims. In short, the authority of certain (...)
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  25. Agency, Experience, and Future Bias.Antti Kauppinen - 2018 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 7 (4):237-245.
    Most of us are hedonically future-biased: other things being equal, we prefer pains to be in the past and pleasures to be in the future. Recently, various authors have argued that future bias is irrational, and that we should be temporally neutral instead. I argue that instead of temporal neutrality, the putative counterexamples and the rationales offered for them only motivate a more narrow principle I call Only Action Fixes Utility: it is only when you act on the basis of (...)
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  26. Normative Und Motivierende Gründe. Ein Kommentar Zu Susanne Mantels Determined by Reasons.Benjamin Kiesewetter - 2018 - Zeitschrift für Philosophische Forschung 72 (3):421-428.
    One of the central aims of Susanne Mantel’s book "Determined by Reasons" (2018) is to reject the idea that normative and motivating reasons can be identical. In her own words, Mantel denies the “Identity Thesis”, according to which “when an agent acts for a normative reason N, there is a motivating reason M of that agent such that M is identical with N” (Mantel 2018, 93). In this comment, I offer a simple argument for the Identity Thesis: (1) When an (...)
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  27. Practical Knowledge as Knowledge of a Normative Judgment.Eric Marcus - 2018 - Manuscrito (4):319-347.
    According to one interpretation of Aristotle’s famous thesis, to say that action is the conclusion of practical reasoning is to say that action is itself a judgment about what to do. A central motivation for the thesis is that it suggests a path for understanding the non-observational character of practical knowledge. If actions are judgments, then whatever explains an agent’s knowledge of the relevant judgment can explain her knowledge of the action. I call the approach to action that accepts Aristotle’s (...)
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  28. We Need Progress in Ideas About How to Achieve Progress.Nicholas Maxwell - 2018 - Metascience (2).
    Steven Pinker's book Enlightenment NOW is in many ways a terrific book, from which I have learnt much. But it is also deeply flawed. Science and reason are at the heart of the book, but the conceptions that Steven Pinker defends are damagingly irrational. And these defective conceptions of science and reason, as a result of being associated with the Enlightenment Programme for the past two or three centuries, have been responsible, in part, for the genesis of the global problems (...)
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  29. Two Thesis About the Distinctness of Practical and Theoretical Normativity.Andrew Reisner - 2018 - In C. McHugh, J. Way & D. Whiting (eds.), Normativity: Epistemic and Practical. Oxford, United Kingdom: Oxford University Press. pp. 221-240.
    In tradition linked to Aristotle and Kant, many contemporary philosophers treat practical and theoretical normativity as two genuinely distinct domains of normativity. In this paper I consider the question of what it is for normative domains to be distinct. I suggest that there are two different ways that the distinctness thesis might be understood and consider the different implications of the two different distinctness theses.
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  30. Believing for Practical Reasons.Susanna Rinard - 2018 - Noûs (4):763-784.
    Some prominent evidentialists argue that practical considerations cannot be normative reasons for belief because they can’t be motivating reasons for belief. Existing pragmatist responses turn out to depend on the assumption that it’s possible to believe in the absence of evidence. The evidentialist may deny this, at which point the debate ends in an impasse. I propose a new strategy for the pragmatist. This involves conceding that belief in the absence of evidence is impossible. We then argue that evidence can (...)
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  31. Interpersonal Obligation in Joint Action.Abraham Roth - 2018 - In Marija Jankovic & Kirk Ludwig (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Collective Intentionality. New York: Routledge. pp. 45-57.
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  32. Risk Aversion and the Long Run.Johanna Thoma - 2018 - Ethics 129 (2):230-253.
    This article argues that Lara Buchak’s risk-weighted expected utility theory fails to offer a true alternative to expected utility theory. Under commonly held assumptions about dynamic choice and the framing of decision problems, rational agents are guided by their attitudes to temporally extended courses of action. If so, REU theory makes approximately the same recommendations as expected utility theory. Being more permissive about dynamic choice or framing, however, undermines the theory’s claim to capturing a steady choice disposition in the face (...)
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  33. Nietzsche and Self-Constitution.Ariela Tubert - 2018 - In Paul Katsafanas (ed.), Routledge Philosophical Minds: The Nietzschean Mind. Routledge.
    This paper argues for interpreting Nietzsche along the lines of a self-constitution view. According to the self-constitution view, a person is a kind of creation: we constitute our selves throughout our lives. The self-constitution view may take more than one form: on the narrative version, the self is like a story, while on the Kantian version, the self is a set of principles or commitments. Taking Marya Schechtman’s and Christine Korsgaard’s accounts as paradigmatic, I take the self-constitution view to emphasize (...)
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  34. Do We Need Partial Intentions?Avery Archer - 2017 - Philosophia 45 (3):995-1005.
    Richard Holton has argued that the traditional account of intentions—which only posits the existence of all-out intentions—is inadequate because it fails to accommodate dual-plan cases; ones in which it is rationally permissible for an agent to adopt two competing plans to bring about the same end. Since the consistency norms governing all-out intentions prohibit the adoption of competing intentions, we can only preserve the idea that the agent in a dual-plan case is not being irrational if we attribute to them (...)
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  35. The Verdictive Organization of Desire.Derek Clayton Baker - 2017 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 47 (5):589-612.
    Deliberation often begins with the question ‘What do I want to do?’ rather than the question of what one ought to do. This paper takes that question at face value, as a question about which of one’s desires is strongest, which sometimes guides action. The paper aims to explain which properties of a desire make that desire strong, in the sense of ‘strength’ relevant to this deliberative question. Both motivational force and phenomenological intensity seem relevant to a desire’s strength; however, (...)
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  36. Instrumental Reasoning in Nonhuman Animals.Elisabeth Camp & Eli Shupe - 2017 - In Kristin Andrews & Jake Beck (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Animal Minds. London, UK: pp. 100-118.
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  37. One Self Per Customer? From Disunified Agency to Disunified Self.David Lumsden & Joseph Ulatowski - 2017 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 55 (3):314-335.
    The notion of an agent and the notion of a self are connected, for agency is one role played by the self. Millgram argues for a disunity thesis of agency on the basis of extreme incommensurability across some major life events. We propose a similar negative thesis about the self, that it is composed of relatively independent threads reflecting the different roles and different mind-sets of the person's life. Our understanding of those threads is based on theories of the narrative (...)
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  38. Ethics and Practical Reasoning.Matthew Silverstein - 2017 - Ethics 127 (2):353 - 382.
    How is practical reasoning related to ethical reasoning? The most common view is that they are identical: practical reasoning just is ethical reasoning. I criticize this view and then propose an alternative account of the relation between ethical thought and practical thought: ethical reasoning is reasoning about sound practical reasoning. I argue that this account of the relation between ethics and practical reasoning explains various phenomena that more familiar views leave unexplained. It also entails that the philosophy of action bears (...)
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  39. Can Reasons Be Propositions? Against Dancy's Attack on Propositionalism.Attila Tanyi & Morganti Matteo - 2017 - Theoria 83 (3):185-205.
    The topic of this article is the ontology of practical reasons. We draw a critical comparison between two views. According to the first, practical reasons are states of affairs; according to the second, they are propositions. We first isolate and spell out in detail certain objections to the second view that can be found only in embryonic form in the literature – in particular, in the work of Jonathan Dancy. Next, we sketch possible ways in which one might respond to (...)
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  40. Advice for the Steady: Decision Theory and the Requirements of Instrumental Rationality.Johanna Thoma - 2017 - Dissertation,
    Standard decision theory, or rational choice theory, is often interpreted to be a theory of instrumental rationality. This dissertation argues, however, that the core requirements of orthodox decision theory cannot be defended as general requirements of instrumental rationality. Instead, I argue that these requirements can only be instrumentally justified to agents who have a desire to have choice dispositions that are stable over time and across different choice contexts. Past attempts at making instrumentalist arguments for the core requirements of decision (...)
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  41. Must Rational Intentions Maximize Utility?Ralph Wedgwood - 2017 - Philosophical Explorations 20 (sup2):73-92.
    Suppose that it is rational to choose or intend a course of action if and only if the course of action maximizes some sort of expectation of some sort of value. What sort of value should this definition appeal to? According to an influential neo-Humean view, the answer is “Utility”, where utility is defined as a measure of subjective preference. According to a rival neo-Aristotelian view, the answer is “Choiceworthiness”, where choiceworthiness is an irreducibly normative notion of a course of (...)
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  42. “Comparativism: The Ground of Rational Choice,” in Errol Lord and Barry McGuire, Eds., Weighing Reasons , 2016.Ruth Chang - 2016 - In B. Maguire & E. Lord (eds.), Weighing Reasons. Oxford University Press. pp. 213-240.
    What, normatively speaking, are the grounds of rational choice? This paper defends ‘comparativism’, the view that a comparative fact grounds rational choice. It examines three of the most serious challenges to comparativism: 1) that sometimes what grounds rational choice is an exclusionary-type relation among alternatives; 2) that an absolute fact such as that it’s your duty or conforms to the Categorial Imperative grounds rational choice; and 3) that rational choice between incomparables is possible, and in particular, all that is needed (...)
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  43. Practical Integration: The Art of Balancing Values, Institutions and Knowledge. Lessons From the History of British Public Health and Town Planning.Giovanni De Grandis - 2016 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 56:92-105.
    The paper uses two historical examples, public health (1840-1880) and town planning (1945-1975) in Britain, to analyse the challenges faced by goal-driven research, an increasingly important trend in science policy, as exemplified by the prominence of calls for addressing Grand Challenges. Two key points are argued. (1) Given that the aim of research addressing social or global problems is to contribute to improving things, this research should include all the steps necessary to bring science and technology to fruition. This need (...)
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  44. Does MITE Make Right? Decision-Making Under Normative Uncertainty.Brian Hedden - 2016 - In Russ Schafer-Landau (ed.), Oxford Studies in Metaethics Volume 11. pp. 102-128.
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  45. Reasons Wrong and Right.Nathaniel Sharadin - 2016 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 97 (3):371-399.
    The fact that someone is generous is a reason to admire them. The fact that someone will pay you to admire them is also a reason to admire them. But there is a difference in kind between these two reasons: the former seems to be the ‘right’ kind of reason to admire, whereas the latter seems to be the ‘wrong’ kind of reason to admire. The Wrong Kind of Reasons Problem is the problem of explaining the difference between the ‘right’ (...)
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  46. Teleology and Normativity.Matthew Silverstein - 2016 - Oxford Studies in Metaethics 11:214-240.
    Constitutivists seek to locate the metaphysical foundations of ethics in nonnormative facts about what is constitutive of agency. For most constitutivists, this involves grounding authoritative norms in the teleological structure of agency. Despite a recent surge in interest, the philosophical move at the heart of this sort of constitutivism remains underdeveloped. Some constitutivists—Foot, Thomson, and Korsgaard (at least in her recent *Self-Constitution*)—adopt a broadly Aristotelian approach. They claim that the functional nature of agency grounds normative judgments about agents in much (...)
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  47. Skorupski on Spontaneity, Apriority and Normative Truth.Kurt Sylvan - 2016 - Philosophical Quarterly 66 (264):617-628.
    This paper raises a dilemma for Skorupski’s meta-normative outlook in The Domain of Reasons and explores some escape routes, recommending a more thoroughgoing Kantianism as the best option. §1 argues that we cannot plausibly combine Skorupski’s spontaneity-based epistemology of normativity with his cognition-independent view of normative truth. §§2–4 consider whether we should keep the epistemology and revise the metaphysics, opting for constructivism. While Skorupski’s negative case for his spontaneity-based epistemology is found wanting, it is suggested that a better argument for (...)
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  48. Virtue, Perception and Reality. Virtue ethics between cultural sensitivity and relativism.Andreas Trampota - 2016 - In Jochen Schmidt & Idris Nassery (eds.), Moralische Vortrefflichkeit in der pluralen Gesellschaft. Tugendethik aus philosophischer, christlicher und muslimischer Perspektive. Paderborn: Schöningh. pp. 133-150.
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  49. Reasons and Guidance.Jonathan Way & Daniel Whiting - 2016 - Analytic Philosophy 57 (3):214-235.
    Many philosophers accept a response constraint on normative reasons: that p is a reason for you to φ only if you are able to φ for the reason that p. This constraint offers a natural way to cash out the familiar and intuitive thought that reasons must be able to guide us, and has been put to work as a premise in a range of influential arguments in ethics and epistemology. However, the constraint requires interpretation and faces putative counter-examples due (...)
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  50. Deliberators Must Be Imperfect.Derek Clayton Baker - 2015 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 90 (3):321-347.
    This paper argues that, with certain provisos, predicting one's future actions is incompatible with rationally deliberating about whether to perform those actions. It follows that fully rational omniscient agents are impossible, since an omniscient being could never rationally deliberate about what to do . Consequently, theories that explain practical reasons in terms of the choices of a perfectly rational omniscient agent must fail. The paper considers several ways of defending the possibility of an omniscient agent, and concludes that while some (...)
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