The doctrine of internal reasons

Journal of Value Inquiry 34 (4):507-516 (2000)
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According to advocates of internalism about reasons for action, there is an interesting connection between an agent’s reasons and the agent’s present desires. On the simplest version of this view, an agent has a reason to act a certain way at some time if and only if acting that way would promote his present desires. Let us call this the sub-Humean model.1 The sub-Humean model is widely regarded as too simple on the grounds that there are adverse conditions, such as massive confusion, in which desires are irrationally possessed or acquired, thereby failing to provide reasons for action.2
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