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  1. Imre Lakatos and a Theory of Rationality.Leslie Allan - manuscript
    In this comprehensive work on theories of rationality, Leslie Allan builds on the seminal insights of Imre Lakatos. Allan begins by critically reviewing Lakatos' theory of rationality (MSRP) and his meta-theory of rationality (MHRP) and suggesting improvements to his scheme. Allan's main task is developing a theory of rationality that avoids Lakatos' Achilles' heel; the presupposition that science is a rational enterprise. To achieve this, he attempts to draw out from the general demands of an objectivist epistemology the various criteria (...)
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  2. Towards an Objective Theory of Rationality.Leslie Allan - manuscript
    Drawing on insights from Imre Lakatos' seminal work on theories of rationality, Leslie Allan develops seven criteria for rational theory choice that avoid presuming the rationality of the scientific enterprise. He shows how his axioms of rationality follow from the general demands of an objectivist epistemology. Allan concludes by considering two weighty objections to his framework.
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  3. Defending the Uniqueness Thesis - A Reply to Luis Rosa.Muralidharan Anantharaman - 2015 - Logos and Episteme 6 (1):129-139.
    The Uniqueness Thesis (U), according to Richard Feldman and Roger White, says that for a given set of evidence E and a proposition P, only one doxastic attitude about P is rational given E. Luis Rosa has recently provided two counterexamples against U which are supposed to show that even if there is a sense in which choosing between two doxastic attitudes is arbitrary, both options are equally and maximally rational. Both counterexamples work by exploiting the idea that ‘ought implies (...)
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  4. Trying Cognitivism: A Defence of the Strong Belief Thesis.Avery Archer - forthcoming - Theoria.
    According to the Strong Belief Thesis (SBT), intending to X entails the belief that one will X. John Brunero has attempted to impugn SBT by arguing that there are cases in which an agent intends to X but is unsure that she will X. Moreover, he claims that the standard reply to such putative counterexamples to SBT – namely, to claim that the unsure agent merely has an intention to try – comes at a high price. Specifically, it prevents SBT (...)
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  5. Decision Theory for Agents with Incomplete Preferences.Adam Bales, Daniel Cohen & Toby Handfield - 2014 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 92 (3):453-70.
    Orthodox decision theory gives no advice to agents who hold two goods to be incommensurate in value because such agents will have incomplete preferences. According to standard treatments, rationality requires complete preferences, so such agents are irrational. Experience shows, however, that incomplete preferences are ubiquitous in ordinary life. In this paper, we aim to do two things: (1) show that there is a good case for revising decision theory so as to allow it to apply non-vacuously to agents with incomplete (...)
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  6. Christine Korsgaards moralfilosofi.Gunnar Björnsson - 2005 - Norsk Filosofisk Tidsskrift 1:38–54.
    Critical introduction in Swedish of Christine Korsgaard's Sources of Normativity and Self-Constitution.
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  7. Casey Perin’s The Demands of Reason.Tad Brennan - 2013 - International Journal for the Study of Skepticism 3 (4):283-293.
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  8. Co–Operation and Communication in Apes and Humans.Ingar Brinck & Peter Gärdenfors - 2003 - Mind and Language 18 (5):484–501.
    We trace the difference between the ways in which apes and humans co–operate to differences in communicative abilities, claiming that the pressure for future–directed co–operation was a major force behind the evolution of language. Competitive co–operation concerns goals that are present in the environment and have stable values. It relies on either signalling or joint attention. Future–directed co–operation concerns new goals that lack fixed values. It requires symbolic communication and context–independent representations of means and goals. We analyse these ways of (...)
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  9. Preface Writers Are Consistent.Roger Clarke - forthcoming - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly.
    The preface paradox does not show that it can be rational to have inconsistent beliefs, because preface writers do not have inconsistent beliefs. I argue, first, that a fully satisfactory solution to the preface paradox would have it that the preface writer's beliefs are consistent. The case here is on basic intuitive grounds, not the consequence of a theory of rationality or of belief. Second, I point out that there is an independently motivated theory of belief – sensitivism – which (...)
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  10. Epistemic Akrasia and Epistemic Reasons.Marc-Kevin Daoust - forthcoming - Episteme:1-21.
    It seems that epistemically rational agents should avoid incoherent combinations of beliefs and should respond correctly to their epistemic reasons. However, some situations seem to indicate that such requirements cannot be simultaneously satisfied. In such contexts, assuming that there is no unsolvable dilemma of epistemic rationality, either (i) it could be rational that one’s higher-order attitudes do not align with one’s first-order attitudes or (ii) requirements such as responding correctly to epistemic reasons that agents have are not genuine rationality requirements. (...)
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  11. One Standard to Rule Them All?Marc-Kevin Daoust - forthcoming - Ratio.
    It has been argued that an epistemically rational agent’s evidence is subjectively mediated through some rational epistemic standards, and that there are incompatible but equally rational epistemic standards available to agents. This supports Permissiveness, the view according to which one or multiple fully rational agents are permitted to take distinct incompatible doxastic attitudes towards P (relative to a body of evidence). In this paper, I argue that the above claims entail the existence of a unique and more reliable epistemic standard. (...)
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  12. Restoring Emotion's Bad Rep: The Moral Randomness of Norms.Ronald De Sousa - 2006 - European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 2 (1):29-47.
    Despite the fact that common sense taxes emotions with irrationality, philosophers have, by and large, celebrated their functionality. They are credited with motivating, steadying, shaping or harmonizing our dispositions to act, and with policing norms of social behaviour. It's time to restore emotion's bad rep. To this end, I shall argue that we should expect that some of the “norms” enforced by emotions will be unevenly distributed among the members of our species, and may be dysfunctional at the individual, social, (...)
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  13. Just Do It? When to Do What You Judge You Ought to Do.Julien Dutant & Clayton Littlejohn - forthcoming - Synthese:1-18.
    While it is generally believed that justification is a fallible guide to the truth, there might be interesting exceptions to this general rule. In recent work on bridge-principles, an increasing number of authors have argued that truths about what a subject ought to do are truths we stand in some privileged epistemic relation to and that our justified normative beliefs are beliefs that will not lead us astray. If these bridge-principles hold, it suggests that justification might play an interesting role (...)
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  14. On the Presence of Educated Religious Beliefs in the Public Sphere.Gheorghe-Ilie Farte - 2015 - Argumentum. Journal of the Seminar of Discursive Logic, Argumentation Theory and Rhetoric 13 (2):146-178.
    Discursive liberal democracy might not be the best of all possible forms of government, yet in Europe it is largely accepted as such. The attractors of liberal democracy (majority rule, political equality, reasonable self-determination and an ideological framework built in a tentative manner) as well as an adequate dose of secularization (according to the doctrine of religious restraint) provide both secularist and educated religious people with the most convenient ideological framework. Unfortunately, many promoters of ideological secularization take too strong a (...)
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  15. The Ladder of Rationality.Julian Fink - 2016 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 19 (3):787-791.
    This paper is a review and critical discussion of John Broome’s Rationality Through Reasoning. In particular, it engages critically with Broome’s view on the independence of normative reasons and rationality, his construal of the capacity, property, and requirement senses of “rationality”, and his account of reasoning as a conscious, rule-following operation on mental contents.
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  16. A Constitutive Account of 'Rationality Requires'.Julian Fink - 2014 - Erkenntnis (4):909-941.
    The requirements of rationality are fundamental in practical and theoretical philosophy. Nonetheless, there exists no correct account of what constitutes rational requirements. This paper attempts to provide a correct constitutive account of ‘rationality requires’. I argue that rational requirements are grounded in ‘necessary explanations of subjective incoherence’, as I shall put it. Rationality requires of you to X if and only if your rational capacities, in conjunction with the fact that you not-X, explain necessarily why you have a non-maximal degree (...)
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  17. The Function of Normative Process-Requirements.Julian Fink - 2012 - Dialectica 66 (1):115-136.
    This paper discusses whether rationality, morality or prudence impose process-requirements upon us. It has been argued that process-requirements fulfil two essential functions within a system of rational, moral or prudential requirements. These functions are considered to prove the existence of process-requirements. First, process-requirements are deemed necessary to ensure that rationality, morality or prudence can guide our deliberations and actions. Second, their existence is regarded as essential for the correctness of our ordinary explanations of why a person possesses a certain degree (...)
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  18. Asymmetry, Scope, and Rational Consistency.Julian Fink - 2010 - Croatian Journal of Philosophy 10 (2):109-130.
    Suppose rationality requires you to A if you believe you ought to A. Suppose you believe that you ought to A. How can you satisfy this requirement? One way seems obvious. You can satisfy this requirement by A-ing. But can you also satisfy it by stopping to believe that you ought to A? Recently, it has been argued that this second option is not a genuine way of satisfying the above requirement. Conditional requirements of rationality do not have two ‘symmetric’, (...)
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  19. On the Scope, Jurisdiction, and Application of Rationality and the Law.Daniel Fogal - 2018 - Problema 12:21-57.
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  20. 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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  21. Practical Reasoning.Antti Kauppinen - forthcoming - In Daniel Star (ed.), Oxford Handbook of Reasons and Normativity. Oxford University Press.
    This chapter presents two contemporary pictures of practical reasoning. According to the Rule-Guidance Conception, roughly, practical reasoning is a rule-guided operation of acquiring (or retaining or giving up) intentions so as to meet synchronic requirements of rationality. According to the Reasons-Responsiveness Conception, practical reasoning is a process of responding to reasons we take ourselves to have, and its standards of correctness derive from what we objectively have reason to do, if things are as we suppose them to be. I argue (...)
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  22. Repliken.Benjamin Kiesewetter - 2017 - Zeitschrift für Philosophische Forschung 71 (4):578-83.
    This a a reply to Gerhard Ernst's and Erasmus Mayr's critical comments on my book 'The Normativity of Rationality'.
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  23. The Locality and Globality of Instrumental Rationality: The Normative Significance of Preference Reversals.Brian Kim - 2014 - Synthese 191 (18):4353-4376.
    When we ask a decision maker to express her preferences, it is typically assumed that we are eliciting a pre-existing set of preferences. However, empirical research has suggested that our preferences are often constructed on the fly for the decision problem at hand. This paper explores the ramifications of this empirical research for our understanding of instrumental rationality. First, I argue that these results pose serious challenges for the traditional decision-theoretic view of instrumental rationality, which demands global coherence amongst all (...)
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  24. Rationality and its Contexts.Timothy Lane - 2016 - In Hung T. W. & Lane T. J. (eds.), Rationality: Constraints and Contexts. Elsevier. pp. 3-13.
    A cursory glance at the list of Nobel Laureates for Economics is sufficient to confirm Stanovich’s description of the project to evaluate human rationality as seminal. Herbert Simon, Reinhard Selten, John Nash, Daniel Kahneman, and others, were awarded their prizes less for their work in economics, per se, than for their work on rationality, as such. Although philosophical works have for millennia attempted to describe, explicate and evaluate individual and collective aspects of rationality, new impetus was brought to this endeavor (...)
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  25. A Theory of Epistemic Supererogation.Han Li - 2018 - Erkenntnis 83 (2):349-367.
    Though there is a wide and varied literature on ethical supererogation, there has been almost nothing written about its epistemic counterpart, despite an intuitive analogy between the two fields. This paper seeks to change this state of affairs. I will begin by showing that there are examples which intuitively feature epistemically supererogatory doxastic states. Next, I will present a positive theory of epistemic supererogation that can vindicate our intuitions in these examples, in an explanation that parallels a popular theory of (...)
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  26. Being More Realistic About Reasons: On Rationality and Reasons Perspectivism.Clayton Littlejohn - forthcoming - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
    This paper looks at whether it is possible to unify the requirements of normative reasons with the requirements of rationality. It seems difficult to do because it seems that the former depends upon features of the situation and the latter depends only upon an individual’s perspective on that situation. Reasons perspectivists think that the key to understanding how rationality could be a matter of responding correctly to reasons is to argue that the potent reasons are those that figure in our (...)
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  27. Being More Realistic About Reasons: On Rationality and Reasons Perspectivism.Clayton Littlejohn - forthcoming - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
    This paper looks at whether it is possible to unify the requirements of rationality with the demands of normative reasons. It might seem impossible to do because one depends upon the agent’s perspective and the other upon features of the situation. Enter Reasons Perspectivism. Reasons perspectivists think they can show that rationality does consist in responding correctly to reasons by placing epistemic constraints on these reasons. They think that if normative reasons are subject to the right epistemic constraints, rational requirements (...)
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  28. Objectivism and Subjectivism in Epistemology.Clayton Littlejohn - forthcoming - In Veli Mitova (ed.), The Factive Turn. Cambridge University Press.
    There is a kind of objectivism in epistemology that involves the acceptance of objective epistemic norms. It is generally regarded as harmless. There is another kind of objectivism in epistemology that involves the acceptance of an objectivist account of justification, one that takes the justification of a belief to turn on its accuracy. It is generally regarded as hopeless. It is a strange and unfortunate sociological fact that these attitudes are so prevalent. Objectivism about norms and justification stand or fall (...)
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  29. Reasons and Theoretical Rationality.Clayton Littlejohn - forthcoming - In Daniel Star (ed.), Oxford Handbook of Reasons and Normativity. Oxford University Press.
    A discussion of epistemic reasons, theoretical rationality, and the relationship between them. Discusses the ontology of reasons and evidence, the relationship between reasons (motivating, normative, possessed, apparent, genuine, etc.) and rationality, the relationship between epistemic reasons and evidence, the relationship between rationality, justification, and knowledge, and many other related topics.
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  30. Stop Making Sense? On a Puzzle About Rationality.Clayton Littlejohn - 2018 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research:257-272.
    In this paper, I present a puzzle about epistemic rationality. It seems plausible that it should be rational to believe a proposition if you have sufficient evidential support for it. It seems plausible that it rationality requires you to conform to the categorical requirements of rationality. It also seems plausible that our first-order attitudes ought to mesh with our higher-order attitudes. It seems unfortunate that we cannot accept all three claims about rationality. I will present three ways of trying to (...)
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  31. Do Reasons and Evidence Share the Same Residence?Clayton Littlejohn - 2016 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 93 (3):720-727.
    This is part of an authors meets critics session on Daniel Star's wonderful book, Knowing Better. I discuss a potential problem with Kearns and Star's Reasons as Evidence thesis. The issue has to do with the difficulties we face is we treat normative reasons as evidence and impose no possession conditions on evidence. On such a view, it's hard to see how practical reasoning could be a non-monotonic process. One way out of the difficulty would be to allow for (potent) (...)
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  32. Who Cares What You Accurately Believe?Clayton Littlejohn - 2015 - Philosophical Perspectives 29 (1):217-248.
    This is a critical discussion of the accuracy-first approach to epistemic norms. If you think of accuracy (gradational or categorical) as the fundamental epistemic good and think of epistemic goods as things that call for promotion, you might think that we should use broadly consequentialist reasoning to determine which norms govern partial and full belief. After presenting consequentialist arguments for probabilism and the normative Lockean view, I shall argue that the consequentialist framework isn't nearly as promising as it might first (...)
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  33. A Note Concerning Justification and Access.Clayton Littlejohn - 2013 - Episteme 10 (4):369-386.
    Certain combinations of attitudes are manifestly unreasonable. It is unreasonable to believe that dogs bark, for example, if one concedes that one has no justification to believe this. Why are the irrational combinations irrational? One suggestion is that these are attitudes that a subject cannot have justification to have. If this is right, we can test claims about the structure of propositional justification by relying on our observations about which combinations of attitudes constitute Moorean absurd pairs. In a recent defense (...)
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  34. Agrippan Pyrrhonism and the Challenge of Disagreement.Diego E. Machuca - 2015 - Journal of Philosophical Research 40:23-39.
    This paper argues for the following three claims. First, the Agrippan mode from disagreement does not play a secondary role in inducing suspension of judgment. Second, the Pyrrhonist is not committed to the criteria of justification underlying the Five Modes of Agrippa, which nonetheless does not prevent him from non-doxastically assenting to them. And third, some recent objections to Agrippan Pyrrhonism raised by analytic epistemologists and experimental philosophers fail to appreciate the Pyrrhonist's ad hominem style of argumentation and the real (...)
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  35. Representation Theorems and the Foundations of Decision Theory.Christopher J. G. Meacham & Jonathan Weisberg - 2011 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 89 (4):641 - 663.
    Representation theorems are often taken to provide the foundations for decision theory. First, they are taken to characterize degrees of belief and utilities. Second, they are taken to justify two fundamental rules of rationality: that we should have probabilistic degrees of belief and that we should act as expected utility maximizers. We argue that representation theorems cannot serve either of these foundational purposes, and that recent attempts to defend the foundational importance of representation theorems are unsuccessful. As a result, we (...)
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  36. A Reply to the Synchronist.Abelard Podgorski - 2016 - Mind 125 (499):859-871.
    On the face of it, in ordinary practices of rational assessment, we criticize agents both for the combinations of attitudes, like belief, desire, and intention, that they possess at particular times, and for the ways that they behave cognitively over time, by forming, reconsidering, and updating those attitudes. Accordingly, philosophers have proposed norms of rationality that are synchronic—concerned fundamentally with our individual time-slices, and diachronic—concerned with our temporally extended behaviour. However, a recent movement in epistemology has cast doubt on the (...)
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  37. Anchoring Diachronic Rationality.Andrew Reisner - manuscript
    [Please note, this paper has been for the most part superseded by 'Unifying the Requirements of Rationality'] In the last decade, it has become commonplace among people who work on reasons (although not uncontroversially so) to distinguish between normativity and rationality. Work by John Broome, Niko Kolodny, Derek Parfit, and Nicholas Shackel has helped to establish the view that rationality is conceptually distinct from reasons. The distinction allows us to make sense of the questions recently addressed by Broome, Kolodny, Reisner, (...)
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  38. Peer Disagreement, Rational Requirements, and Evidence of Evidence as Evidence Against.Andrew Reisner - 2016 - In Pedro Schmechtig & Martin Grajner (eds.), Epistemic Reasons, Norms and Goals. De Gruyter. pp. 95-114.
    This chapter addresses an ambiguity in some of the literature on rational peer disagreement about the use of the term 'rational'. In the literature 'rational' is used to describe a variety of normative statuses related to reasons, justification, and reasoning. This chapter focuses most closely on the upshot of peer disagreement for what is rationally required of parties to a peer disagreement. This follows recent work in theoretical reason which treats rationality as a system of requirements among an agent's mental (...)
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  39. Is the Enkratic Principle a Requirement of Rationality?Andrew Reisner - 2013 - Organon F 20 (4):436-462.
    In this paper I argue that the enkratic principle in its classic formulation may not be a requirement of rationality. The investigation of whether it is leads to some important methodological insights into the study of rationality. I also consider the possibility that we should consider rational requirements as a subset of a broader category of agential requirements.
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  40. No Exception for Belief.Susanna Rinard - 2017 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 94 (1):121-143.
    This paper defends a principle I call Equal Treatment, according to which the rationality of a belief is determined in precisely the same way as the rationality of any other state. For example, if wearing a raincoat is rational just in case doing so maximizes expected value, then believing some proposition P is rational just in case doing so maximizes expected value. This contrasts with the popular view that the rationality of belief is determined by evidential support. It also contrasts (...)
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  41. Can Worsnip’s Strategy Solve the Puzzle of Misleading Higher-Order Apparent Evidence?Paul Silva - forthcoming - Inquiry : An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy.
    It's plausible to think that we're rationally required to follow our total evidence. It's also plausible to think that there are coherence requirements on rationality. It's also plausible to think that higher-order evidence can be misleading. Several epistemologists have recognized the puzzle these claims generate, and the puzzle seems to have only startling and unattractive solutions that involve the rejection of intuitive principles. Yet Alex Worsnip (Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, forthcoming) has recently argued that this puzzle has a tidy, attractive, (...)
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  42. Constructivism and the Normativity of Practical Reason.Nicholas Southwood - forthcoming - In K. Jones & F. Schroeter (eds.), The Many Moral Rationalisms. Oxford University Press.
    Constructivists hold that truths about practical reasons are to be explained in terms of truths about the correct exercise of practical reason (rather than vice versa). But what is the normative status of the correctness-defining standards of practical reason? The problem is that constructivism appears to presuppose the truth of two theses that seem hard to reconcile. First, for constructivism to be remotely plausible, the relevant standards must be genuinely (and not merely formally or minimally) normative. Second, to avoid circularity, (...)
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  43. The Motivation Question.Nicholas Southwood - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (12):3413-3430.
    How does it happen that our beliefs about what we ought to do cause us to intend to do what we believe we ought to do? This is what John Broome calls the "motivation question." Broome’s answer to the motivation question is that we can bring ourselves, by our own efforts, to intend to do what we believe we ought to do by exercising a special agential capacity: the capacity to engage in what he calls enkratic reasoning. My aim is (...)
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  44. Imagination, Desire, and Rationality.Shannon Spaulding - 2015 - Journal of Philosophy 112 (9):457-476.
    We often have affective responses to fictional events. We feel afraid for Desdemona when Othello approaches her in a murderous rage. We feel disgust toward Iago for orchestrating this tragic event. What mental architecture could explain these affective responses? In this paper I consider the claim that the best explanation of our affective responses to fiction involves imaginative desires. Some theorists argue that accounts that do not invoke imaginative desires imply that consumers of fiction have irrational desires. I argue that (...)
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  45. Minimalism About Intention: A Modest Defense.Sergio Tenenbaum - 2014 - Inquiry : An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 57 (3):384-411.
    Inquiry, Volume 57, Issue 3, Page 384-411, June 2014.
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  46. Vague Projects and the Puzzle of the Self-Torturer.Sergio Tenenbaum & Diana Raffman - 2012 - Ethics 123 (1):86-112.
    In this paper we advance a new solution to Quinn’s puzzle of the self-torturer. The solution falls directly out of an application of the principle of instrumental reasoning to what we call “vague projects”, i.e., projects whose completion does not occur at any particular or definite point or moment. The resulting treatment of the puzzle extends our understanding of instrumental rationality to projects and ends that cannot be accommodated by orthodox theories of rational choice.
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  47. Against Deductive Closure.Paul D. Thorn - 2017 - Theoria 83 (2):103-119.
    The present article illustrates a conflict between the claim that rational belief sets are closed under deductive consequences, and a very inclusive claim about the factors that are sufficient to determine whether it is rational to believe respective propositions. Inasmuch as it is implausible to hold that the factors listed here are insufficient to determine whether it is rational to believe respective propositions, we have good reason to deny that rational belief sets are closed under deductive consequences.
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  48. The Justification of Deductive Inference and the Rationality of Believing for a Reason.Gian-Andri Toendury - 2007 - Dissertation, Université de Fribourg
    The present PhD thesis is concerned with the question whether good reasoning requires that the subject has some cognitive grip on the relation between premises and conclusion. One consideration in favor of such a requirement goes as follows: In order for my belief-formation to be an instance of reasoning, and not merely a causally related sequence of beliefs, the process must be guided by my endorsement of a rule of reasoning. Therefore I must have justified beliefs about the relation between (...)
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  49. Constitutive Arguments.Ariela Tubert - 2010 - Philosophy Compass 5 (8):656-666.
    Can the question "Why do what morality requires?" be answered in such a way that anyone regardless of their desires or interests has reason to be moral? One strategy for answering this question appeals to constitutive arguments. In general, constitutive arguments attempt to establish the normativity of rational requirements by pointing out that we are already committed to them insofar as we are believers or agents. This study is concerned with the general prospects for such arguments. It starts by explaining (...)
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  50. Reasons and Rationality.Jonathan Way - forthcoming - In Daniel Star (ed.), Oxford Handbook of Reasons and Normativity. Oxford University Press.
    This article gives an overview of some recent debates about the relationship between reasons and rational requirements of coherence - e.g. the requirements to be consistent in our beliefs and intentions, and to intend what we take to be the necessary means to our ends.
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