- 41 Downloads
The standard philosophical account of akratic action is that it is action contrary to one’s current better judgment about what to do. While respecting the philosophical debate associated with this conception of akrasia, I attempt to offer a different perspective on the subject by suggesting that akratic action could be conceived more broadly as “action without due self-restraint.” Under such a broader conception, there may be several varieties of akrasia. Following Frank Jackson, I propose that a paradigmatic variety of akrasia is “passionate akrasia,” defined in terms of the undue influence of passion. I provide an account of passionate akrasia that builds on Jackson’s decision-theoretic account, though revises it in important respects. In developing this account, I also suggest a solution to the problem of how one can act contrary to one’s current better judgment, thereby indicating how this approach can shed new light on traditional debates.
KeywordsAkrasia Weakness of will Passion Construal Decision theory
- Davidson, D. (1969). How is weakness of the will possible? In J. Feinberg (Ed.), Moral concepts (pp. 93–113). Oxford: OUP.Google Scholar
- Elster, J. (1999). Davidson on weakness of will and self-deception. In L. Hahn (Ed.), The philosophy of Donald Davidson (pp. 425–442). Chicago: Open Court Publishing.Google Scholar
- Kennett, J. (2001). Agency and responsibility: A common-sense moral psychology. Oxford: Clarendon Press.Google Scholar
- Klosko, G. (1980). On the analysis of Protagoras 351B-360E. Phoenix, 34(4), 307–322.Google Scholar
- Mele, A. (1987). Irrationality: An essay on Akrasia, self-deception, and self-control. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Pedersen, N. J. (2016). Non-rational action in the face of disagreement: An argument against (strong) non-conformism. Synthese. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11229-016-1086-0.
- Stroud, S. (2014) Weakness of will. In E. N. Zalta (Ed.), The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Spring 2014 Edition).https://plato.stanford.edu/archives/spr2014/entries/weakness-will/.