Good advice and rational action

Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 60 (3):561-569 (2000)
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This paper launches a new criticism of Michael Smith’s advice model of internalism. Whereas Robert Neal Johnson argues that Smith’s advice model collapses into the example model of internalism, the author contends that taking advice seriously pushes us instead toward some version of externalism. The advice model of internalism misportrays the logic of accepting advice. Agents do not have epistemic access to what their fully rational selves would advise them to do, and so it is necessary for a model of practical reason based upon advice to reflect the fact that agents take advice only from other people. This fact mayor may not support internalism. Whether it does depends upon the content of the good adviser’s advice, something we cannot know unless we ourselves are fully rational. We see in a new way, then, how the internalism/externalism debate depends upon the content of practical reason



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Eric Wiland
University of Missouri, St. Louis

Citations of this work

Sound Advice and Internal Reasons.Ariela Tubert - 2016 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 97 (2):181-199.
A Reason to Know.Olof Leffler - 2023 - Journal of Value Inquiry 57 (3):557-575.

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