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  1. added 2018-10-02
    Embodied Akrasia: James on Motivation and Weakness of Will.Kyle Bromhall - 2018 - William James Studies 14 (1):26-53.
    This paper presents an account of akrasia, drawn from the work of William James, that sees akrasia as neither a rational failing (as with most philosophical accounts) nor a moral failing (as with early Christian accounts), but rather a necessary by-product of our status as biological beings. By examining James’s related accounts of motivation and action, I argue that akratic actions occur when an agent attempts to act against her settled habits, but fails to do so. This makes akrasia a (...)
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  2. added 2018-07-19
    The Two Faces of Akratics Anonymous.Luc Bovens - 1999 - Analysis 59 (4):230–236.
    I argue that by constructing an identity of Bohemian whim and spontaneity one can make what was previously an akratic action into a fully rational action, since in performing the action, one asserts one identity.
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  3. added 2017-12-21
    Is a Bad Will a Weak Will? Cognitive Dispositions Modulate Folk Attributions of Weakness of Will.Alejandro Rosas, Juan Pablo Bermúdez & Jesús Antonio Gutiérrez Cabrera - forthcoming - Philosophical Explorations:1-14.
    In line with recent efforts to empirically study the folk concept of weakness of will, we examine two issues in this paper: (1) How is weakness of will attribution [WWA] influenced by an agent’s violations of best judgment and/or resolution, and by the moral valence of the agent’s action? (2) Do any of these influences depend on the cognitive dispositions of the judging individual? We implemented a factorial 2x2x2 between–subjects design with judgment violation, resolution violation, and action valence as independent (...)
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  4. added 2017-08-07
    Agency Implies Weakness of Will.J. Keller - 2008 - ProtoSociology 25:225-240.
    Notions of agency and of weakness of will clearly seem to be related to one another. This essay takes on a rather modest task in relation to current discussion of these topics; it seeks to establish the following claim: If A is a normal human agent, weakness of will is possible for A. The argument relies on demonstrating that certain necessary conditions for normal human agency are at least roughly equivalent to certain sufficient conditions for weakness of will. The connection (...)
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  5. added 2017-04-30
    A Dual Systems Theory of Incontinent Action.Caleb Dewey - 2017 - Philosophical Psychology 30 (7):925-944.
    In philosophy of action, we typically aim to explain action by appealing to conative attitudes whose contents are either logically consistent propositions or can be rendered as such. Call this “the logical criterion.” This is especially difficult to do with clear-minded, intentional incontinence since we have to explain how two judgments can have non-contradicting contents yet still aim at contradictory outcomes. Davidson devises an innovative way of doing this but compromises his ability to explain how our better judgments can cause (...)
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  6. added 2017-03-09
    Reconsidering Resolutions.Alida Liberman - 2016 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy (2):1-27.
    In Willing, Wanting, Waiting, Richard Holton lays out a detailed account of resolutions, arguing that they enable agents to resist temptation. Holton claims that temptation often leads to inappropriate shifts in judgment, and that resolutions are a special kind of first- and second-order intention pair that blocks such judgment shift. In this paper, I elaborate upon an intuitive but underdeveloped objection to Holton’s view – namely, that his view does not enable agents to successfully block the transmission of temptation in (...)
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  7. added 2016-12-08
    Akrasia and the Problem of the Unity of Reason.Derek Clayton Baker - 2015 - Ratio 28 (1):65-80.
    Joseph Raz and Sergio Tenenbaum argue that the Guise of the Good thesis explains both the possibility of practical reason and its unity with theoretical reason, something Humean psychological theories may be unable to do. This paper will argue, however, that Raz and Tenenbaum face a dilemma: either the version of the Guise of the Good they offer is too strong to allow for weakness of will, or it will lose its theoretical advantage in preserving the unity of reason.
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  8. added 2016-02-22
    Intentions, Akrasia, and Mere Permissibility.Jonathan Way - 2013 - Organon F: Medzinárodný Časopis Pre Analytickú Filozofiu 20 (4):588-611.
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  9. added 2015-12-09
    Akrasia and Irrationality.Sergio Tenenbaum - 2010 - In Sandis O'Connor (ed.), A Companion to the Philosophy of Action. Blackwell. pp. 274-282.
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  10. added 2015-11-27
    Intention.Luca Ferrero - 2013 - In E. Lepore & Kirk Ludwig (eds.), A Companion to Donald Davidson. Wiley-Blackwell. pp. 75-89.
    This chapter presents Davidson’s account of intentional action and intention. Davidson initially discusses intentional action in relation to the explanation and the ontology of action. His earlier view equates acting intentionally with being caused to act by a pair of appropriately related mental states (a pro-attitude and an instrumental belief) and denies the existence of intentions as distinct mental states. Later, in his account of weakness of will, Davidson offers a more complex account of practical deliberation in terms of evaluative (...)
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  11. added 2015-11-26
    Willing, Wanting, Waiting by Richard Holton. [REVIEW]Luca Ferrero - 2012 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 9 (3):443-457.
    In his book Willing, Wanting, Waiting Holton defends a comprehensive view of the will. His central claims are: that we have a capacity of choice, independent of judgment about what is best to do, that resistance to temptation requires a special kind of intentions, resolutions, and the exercise of an executive capacity, willpower, there is a distinction between weakness of will and akrasia. I argue that Holton is right about these claims, but I raise a few concerns: I am unclear (...)
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  12. added 2015-06-06
    Aristotle on Actions From Lack of Control.Jozef Müller - 2015 - Philosophers' Imprint 15.
    The paper defends three claims about Aristotle’s theory of uncontrolled actions (akrasia) in NE 7.3. First, I argue that the first part of NE 7.3 contains the description of the overall state of mind of the agent while she acts without control. Aristotle’s solution to the problem of uncontrolled action lies in the analogy between the uncontrolled agent and people who are drunk, mad, or asleep. This analogy is interpreted as meaning that the uncontrolled agent, while acting without control, is (...)
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  13. added 2015-04-27
    Team Reasoning, Framing and Self-Control: An Aristotelian Account.Natalie Gold - 2013 - In Neil Levy (ed.), Addiction and SelfControl.
    Decision theory explains weakness of will as the result of a conflict of incentives between different transient agents. In this framework, self-control can only be achieved by the I-now altering the incentives or choice-sets of future selves. There is no role for an extended agency over time. However, it is possible to extend game theory to allow multiple levels of agency. At the inter-personal level, theories of team reasoning allow teams to be agents, as well as individuals. I apply team (...)
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  14. added 2015-03-24
    Procrastination as Vice. Baker - 2010 - In Chrisoula Andreou Mark D. White (ed.), The Thief of Time: Philosophical Essays on Procrastination. Oxford University Press.
    Philosophers often give procrastination an anemic description—a preference, a confl ict, a case of irrationality. Presumably, this is done in order to make it susceptible to analysis. But if one makes use of ethical theory, particularly one with an accompanying account of moral psychology, no arid depiction of procrastination is necessary. An ethical theory that is robust enough—such as traditional virtue ethics—can meet procrastination head on, unhindered by its complex emotionality and opaque intentionality. It can then place it alongside similarly (...)
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  15. added 2014-10-10
    The Addict in Us All.Brendan Dill & Richard Holton - 2014 - Frontiers in Psychiatry 5 (139):01-20.
    In this paper, we contend that the psychology of addiction is similar to the psychology of ordinary, non-addictive temptation in important respects, and explore the ways in which these parallels can illuminate both addiction and ordinary action. The incentive salience account of addiction proposed by Robinson and Berridge (1993; 2001; 2008) entails that addictive desires are not in their nature different from many of the desires had by non-addicts; what is different is rather the way that addictive desires are acquired, (...)
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  16. added 2014-09-27
    Addiction and Weakness of Will.Lubomira Radoilska - 2013 - Oxford University Press.
    Mental conflict not always amounts to weakness of will. Irresistible motives not always speak of addiction. This book proposes an integrated account of what singles out these phenomena: addiction and weakness of will are both forms of secondary akrasia. By integrating these two phenomena into a classical conception of akrasia as poor resolution of an unnecessary conflict – valuing without intending while intending without valuing – the book makes an original contribution to central issues in moral psychology and philosophy of (...)
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  17. added 2014-07-18
    Beliefs About the True Self Explain Asymmetries Based on Moral Judgment.George E. Newman, Julian De Freitas & Joshua Knobe - 2015 - Cognitive Science 39 (1):96-125.
    Past research has identified a number of asymmetries based on moral judgments. Beliefs about what a person values, whether a person is happy, whether a person has shown weakness of will, and whether a person deserves praise or blame seem to depend critically on whether participants themselves find the agent's behavior to be morally good or bad. To date, however, the origins of these asymmetries remain unknown. The present studies examine whether beliefs about an agent's “true self” explain these observed (...)
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  18. added 2014-04-02
    How is Willpower Possible? The Puzzle of Synchronic Self‐Control and the Divided Mind.Chandra Sekhar Sripada - 2014 - Noûs 48 (1):41-74.
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  19. added 2014-03-07
    Spinoza on the Problem of Akrasia.Eugene Marshall - 2010 - European Journal of Philosophy 18 (1):41-59.
    : Two common ways of explaining akrasia will be presented, one which focuses on strength of desire and the other which focuses on action issuing from practical judgment. Though each is intuitive in a certain way, they both fail as explanations of the most interesting cases of akrasia. Spinoza 's own thoughts on bondage and the affects follow, from which a Spinozist explanation of akrasia is constructed. This account is based in Spinoza 's mechanistic psychology of cognitive affects. Because Spinoza (...)
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  20. added 2014-03-07
    Rational Capacities, Resolve, and Weakness of Will.Daniel Cohen & Toby Handfield - 2010 - Mind 119 (476):907 - 932.
    In this paper we present an account of practical rationality and weakness of will in terms of rational capacities. We show how our account rectifies various shortcomings in Michael Smith's related theory. In particular, our account is capable of accommodating cases of weak-willed behaviour that are not `akratic', or otherwise contrary to the agent's better judgement. Our account differs from Smith's primarily by incorporating resolve: a third rational capacity for resolute maintenance of one's intentions. We discuss further two ways to (...)
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  21. added 2013-09-07
    Descartes and the Danger of Irresolution.Shoshana Brassfield - 2013 - Essays in Philosophy 14 (2):162-178.
    Descartes's approach to practical judgments about what is beneficial or harmful, or what to pursue or avoid, is almost exactly the opposite of his approach to theoretical judgments about the true nature of things. Instead of the cautious skepticism for which Descartes is known, throughout his ethical writings he recommends developing the habit of making firm judgments and resolutely carrying them out, no matter how doubtful and uncertain they may be. Descartes, strikingly, takes irresolution to be the source of remorse (...)
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  22. added 2012-11-04
    Wanting What We Don't Want to Want: Representing Addiction in Interoperable Bio-Ontologies.Janna Hastings, Nicolas Le Novère, Werner Ceusters, Kevin Mulligan & Barry Smith - 2012 - In Ronald Cornet & Robert Stevens (eds.), Proceeedings of the Third International Conference on Biomedical Ontology. CEUR. pp. 56-60.
    Ontologies are being developed throughout the biomedical sciences to address standardization, integration, classification and reasoning needs against the background of an increasingly data-driven research paradigm. In particular, ontologies facilitate the translation of basic research into benefits for the patient by making research results more discoverable and by facilitating knowledge transfer across disciplinary boundaries. Addressing and adequately treating mental illness is one of our most pressing public health challenges. Primary research across multiple disciplines such as psychology, psychiatry, biology, neuroscience and pharmacology (...)
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  23. added 2012-06-05
    Akrasia and Ordinary Weakness of Will.Lubomira Radoilska - 2012 - Tópicos 43:25-50.
    In this article, I develop an Aristotelian account of akrasia as a primary failure of intentional agency in contrast to a phenomenon I refer to as ‘ordinary weakness of will’: I argue that ordinary weakness of will is best understood as a secondary failure of intentional agency, that to tackle akrasia.
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  24. added 2011-05-31
    Weakness of Will.Christine Tappolet - 2013 - In Hugh LaFolette (ed.), International Encyclopedia of Ethics. Wiley-Blackwell. pp. 4412-21.
    One difficulty in understanding recent debates is that not only have many terms been used to refer to weakness of will – “akrasia” and “incontinence” have often been used as synonyms of “weakness of will” – but quite different phenomena have been discussed in the literature. This is why the present entry starts with taxonomic considerations. The second section turns to the question of whether it is possible to freely and intentionally act against one’s better judgment.
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  25. added 2011-01-20
    Emotions and the Intelligibility of Akratic Action.Christine Tappolet - 2003 - In Sarah Stroud & Christine Tappolet (eds.), Weakness of Will and Practical Irrationality. Oxford: Clarendon Press. pp. 97--120.
    After discussing de Sousa's view of emotion in akrasia, I suggest that emotions be viewed as nonconceptual perceptions of value (see Tappolet 2000). It follows that they can render intelligible actions which are contrary to one's better judgment. An emotion can make one's action intelligible even when that action is opposed by one's all-things-considered judgment. Moreover, an akratic action prompted by an emotion may be more rational than following one's better judgement, for it may be the judgement and not the (...)
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  26. added 2010-09-28
    What in the World is Weakness of Will?Joshua May & Richard Holton - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 157 (3):341–360.
    At least since the middle of the twentieth century, philosophers have tended to identify weakness of will with akrasia—i.e. acting, or having a disposition to act, contrary to one‘s judgments about what is best for one to do. However, there has been some recent debate about whether this captures the ordinary notion of weakness of will. Richard Holton (1999, 2009) claims that it doesn’t, while Alfred Mele (2010) argues that, to a certain extent, it does. As Mele recognizes, the question (...)
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  27. added 2009-04-10
    Procrastination and the Extended Will.Joseph Heath & Joel Anderson - 2010 - In Chrisoula Andreou & Mark D. White (eds.), The Thief of Time. Oxford University Press. pp. 233--253.
    What experimental game theorists may have demonstrated is not that people are systematically irrational but that human rationality is heavily scaffolded. Remove the scaffolding, and we do not do very well. People are able to get on because they “offload” an enormous amount of practical reasoning onto their environment. As a result, when they are put in novel or unfamiliar environments, they perform very poorly, even on apparently simple tasks. -/- This observation is supported by recent empirically informed shifts in (...)
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