A Reason to Know

Journal of Value Inquiry 57 (3):557-575 (2023)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

It is often thought that desire-based versions of reasons internalism, according to which our practical reasons depend on what we desire, are committed to denying that we have any categorical reasons. I shall argue, however, that such theories are committed to a universal desire which gives rise to an unexpected categorical reason – a reason to know our surroundings. I will arrive at this conclusion by using Fichte’s argument for thinking that security from unpredictable and powerful forces of nature is constitutive of agency. Fichte thinks this is the case because we ought to aim at knowledge of our surroundings, and such environments uniquely facilitate it. I show that his argument fails, but the point that we ought to aim at – or desire – such knowledge is fundamentally sound. This aim can then be leveraged to generate a categorical reason when embedded in an account of agency typically embraced by internalists.

Author's Profile

Olof Leffler
Università degli Studi di Siena

Analytics

Added to PP
2021-08-07

Downloads
309 (#56,734)

6 months
93 (#53,700)

Historical graph of downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks on external links on PhilPapers.
How can I increase my downloads?