Intention and Weakness of Will

Journal of Philosophy 96 (5):241 (1999)
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Abstract

Philosophical orthodoxy identifies weakness of will with akrasia: the weak willed person is someone who intentionally acts against their better judgement. It is argued that this is a mistake. Weakness of will consists in a quite different failing, namely an over-ready revision of one's intentions. Building on the work of Bratman, an account of such over-ready revision is given. A number of examples are then adduced showing how weakness of will, so understood, differs from akrasia.

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Richard Holton
Cambridge University

Citations of this work

Deontology and Descartes’s Demon.Brian Weatherson - 2008 - Journal of Philosophy 105 (9):540-569.
Resisting 'Weakness of the Will'.Neil Levy - 2010 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 82 (1):134 - 155.
The Limitations of the Open Mind.Jeremy Fantl - 2018 - Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
What in the World is Weakness of Will?Joshua May & Richard Holton - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 157 (3):341–360.

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References found in this work

Intention, plans, and practical reason.Michael Bratman - 1987 - Cambridge: Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Change in View: Principles of Reasoning.Gilbert Harman - 1986 - Cambridge, MA, USA: MIT Press.
Beyond Good and Evil.Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche - 1886 - New York,: Vintage. Edited by Translator: Hollingdale & J. R..

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