Emotions and the Intelligibility of Akratic Action

Christine Tappolet

in Weakness of Will and Practical Irrationality

Published in print September 2003 | ISBN: 9780199257362
Published online January 2005 | e-ISBN: 9780191601842 | DOI:
 Emotions and the Intelligibility of Akratic Action

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What is the role of emotions in akratic action? Proposing that emotions are non‐conceptual perceptions of values, the author argues that such states have the capacity not just to cause but also to render intelligible actions that are contrary to one's better judgement. Akratic actions prompted by an emotion may even be more rational than following one's evaluative judgement, for the perception might enable the agent to better track the reasons she has, compared to the judgement. By contrast, akratic actions in which no emotion is involved (cases of ‘cool’ akrasia) are genuinely puzzling and of dubious intelligibility.

Keywords: akrasia; attention; Davidson; emotions; non‐conceptual content; perception of values; rational agency; Ronald de Sousa

Chapter.  11130 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

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