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Philosophical Studies 176 (6):1621-1638 (2019)

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  1. Self Torture and Group Beneficence.Frank Arntzenius & David McCarthy - 1997 - Erkenntnis 47 (1):129-144.
    Moral puzzles about actions which bring about very small or what are said to be imperceptible harms or benefits for each of a large number of people are well known. Less well known is an argument by Warren Quinn that standard theories of rationality can lead an agent to end up torturing himself or herself in a completely foreseeable way, and that this shows that standard theories of rationality need to be revised. We show where Quinn's argument goes wrong, and (...)
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  • Rethinking the Good: Moral Ideals and the Nature of Practical Reasoning.Larry S. Temkin - 2012 - Oxford University Press.
    Temkin's book is a very original and deeply unsettling work of skeptical philosophy that mounts an important new challenge to contemporary ethics.
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  • Reasons and Persons.Derek Parfit - 1984 - Oxford University Press.
    Challenging, with several powerful arguments, some of our deepest beliefs about rationality, morality, and personal identity, Parfit claims that we have a false view about our own nature. It is often rational to act against our own best interersts, he argues, and most of us have moral views that are self-defeating. We often act wrongly, although we know there will be no one with serious grounds for complaint, and when we consider future generations it is very hard to avoid conclusions (...)
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  • Do I Make a Difference?Shelly Kagan - 2011 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 39 (2):105-141.
  • Cashing Out the Money-Pump Argument.Chrisoula Andreou - 2016 - Philosophical Studies (6):1-5.
    The money-pump argument figures as the staple argument in support of the view that cyclic preferences are irrational. According to a prominent way of understanding the argument, it is grounded in the assumption that it is irrational to make choices that lead one to a dispreferred alternative. My aim in this paper is to motivate diffidence with respect to understanding the money-pump argument in this way by suggesting that if it is so understood, the argument emerges as question-begging and as (...)
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  • Transitivity, the Sorites Paradox, and Similarity-Based Decision-Making.Alex Voorhoeve & Ken Binmore - 2006 - Erkenntnis 64 (1):101-114.
    A persistent argument against the transitivity assumption of rational choice theory postulates a repeatable action that generates a significant benefit at the expense of a negligible cost. No matter how many times the action has been taken, it therefore seems reasonable for a decision-maker to take the action one more time. However, matters are so fixed that the costs of taking the action some large number of times outweigh the benefits. In taking the action some large number of times on (...)
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  • How Do You Maximize Expectation Value?John L. Pollock - 1983 - Noûs 17 (3):409-421.
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  • Reasons and Persons.Joseph Margolis - 1986 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 47 (2):311-327.
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  • The Real Puzzle of the Self-Torturer: Uncovering a New Dimension of Instrumental Rationality.Chrisoula Andreou - 2015 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 45 (5-6):562-575.
    The puzzle of the self-torturer raises intriguing questions concerning rationality, cyclic preferences, and resoluteness. Interestingly, what makes the case puzzling has not been clearly pinpointed. The puzzle, it seems, is that a series of rational choices foreseeably leads the self-torturer to an option that serves his preferences worse than the one with which he started. But this is a very misleading way of casting the puzzle. I pinpoint the real puzzle of the self-torturer and, in the process, reveal a neglected (...)
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  • Intransitivity and Vague Preferences.Jonathan Aldred - 2007 - The Journal of Ethics 11 (4):377-403.
    This paper is concerned with intransitivity in normative rational choice. It focuses on a class of intransitivities which have received little attention, those involving vague preferences. “Vague preferences” are defined in terms of vague predicates such as “red” or “bald.” Such preferences appear common, and intransitive indifference is argued to be an unavoidable feature of them. Such preferences are argued to undermine intransitive strict preference also. Various formal theories of vagueness are applied to an example of vague preferences, but none (...)
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  • Vague Projects and the Puzzle of the Self-Torturer.Sergio Tenenbaum & Diana Raffman - 2012 - Ethics 123 (1):86-112.
    In this paper we advance a new solution to Quinn’s puzzle of the self-torturer. The solution falls directly out of an application of the principle of instrumental reasoning to what we call “vague projects”, i.e., projects whose completion does not occur at any particular or definite point or moment. The resulting treatment of the puzzle extends our understanding of instrumental rationality to projects and ends that cannot be accommodated by orthodox theories of rational choice.
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  • It Makes No Difference Whether or Not I Do It.Jonathan Glover & M. J. Scott-Taggart - 1975 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 49 (1):171 - 209.
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  • It Makes No Difference Whether or Not I Do It.Jonathan Glover & M. J. Scott-Taggart - 1975 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society, Supplementary Volumes 49:171-209.
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  • There Are Preferences and Then There Are Preferences.Chrisoula Andreou - 2007 - In Barbara Montero and Mark D. White (ed.), Economics and the Mind.
    This paper draws a distinction between two closely related conceptions of 'preference' that is of great significance relative to a set of interrelated debates in rational choice theory. The distinction is particularly illuminating in relation to the idea that there is a rational defect inherent in individuals with intransitive preferences and, relatedly, in democratic collectives. I use the distinction to show that things are more complicated than they seem.
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