30 found
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  1.  85
    Instrumentalism about Moral Responsibility Revisited.Anneli Jefferson - 2019 - Philosophical Quarterly 69 (276):555-573.
    I defend an instrumentalist account of moral responsibility and adopt Manuel Vargas’ idea that our responsibility practices are justified by their effects. However, whereas Vargas gives an independent account of morally responsible agency, on my account, responsible agency is defined as the susceptibility to developing and maintaining moral agency through being held responsible. I show that the instrumentalism I propose can avoid some problems more crude forms of instrumentalism encounter by adopting aspects of Strawsonian accounts. I then show the implications (...)
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  2.  58
    Are mental disorders brain disorders? – A precis.Anneli Jefferson - 2022 - Philosophical Psychology 37 (3):552-557.
    People hold wildly opposing and very strong views on the question whether mental disorders are brain disorders, and the disagreement is primarily a conceptual one, not one about whether there are,...
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  3. Practical Wisdom and the Value of Cognitive Diversity.Anneli Jefferson & Katrina Sifferd - 2022 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 92:149-166.
    The challenges facing us today require practical wisdom to allow us to react appropriately. In this paper, we argue that at a group level, we will make better decisions if we respect and take into account the moral judgment of agents with diverse styles of cognition and moral reasoning. We show this by focusing on the example of autism, highlighting different strengths and weaknesses of moral reasoning found in autistic and non-autistic persons respectively.
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  4. Are Psychopaths Legally Insane?Anneli Jefferson & Katrina Sifferd - 2018 - European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 14 (1):79-96.
    The question of whether psychopaths are criminally and morally responsible has generated significant controversy in the literature. In this paper, we discuss what relevance a psychopathy diagnosis has for criminal responsibility. It has been argued that figuring out whether psychopathy is a mental illness is of fundamental importance, because it is a precondition for psychopaths’ eligibility to be excused via the legal insanity defense. But even if psychopathy counts as a mental illness, this alone is not sufficient to show the (...)
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  5. What does it take to be a brain disorder?Anneli Jefferson - 2020 - Synthese 197 (1):249-262.
    In this paper, I address the question whether mental disorders should be understood to be brain disorders and what conditions need to be met for a disorder to be rightly described as a brain disorder. I defend the view that mental disorders are autonomous and that a condition can be a mental disorder without at the same time being a brain disorder. I then show the consequences of this view. The most important of these is that brain differences underlying mental (...)
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  6.  38
    What is unrealistic optimism?Anneli Jefferson, Lisa Bortolotti & Bojana Kuzmanovic - 2017 - Consciousness and Cognition 50:3-11.
  7. Slippery Slope Arguments.Anneli Jefferson - 2014 - Philosophy Compass 9 (10):672-680.
    Slippery slope arguments are frequently dismissed as fallacious or weak arguments but are nevertheless commonly used in political and bioethical debates. This paper gives an overview of different variants of the argument commonly found in the literature and addresses their argumentative strength and the interrelations between them. The most common variant, the empirical slippery slope argument, predicts that if we do A, at some point the highly undesirable B will follow. I discuss both the question which factors affect likelihood of (...)
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  8. Brain Pathology and Moral Responsibility.Anneli Jefferson - 2022 - In Matt King & Joshua May (eds.), Agency in Mental Disorder: Philosophical Dimensions. Oxford University Press.
    Does a diagnosis of brain dysfunction matter for ascriptions of moral responsibility? This chapter argues that, while knowledge of brain pathology can inform judgments of moral responsibility, its evidential value is currently limited for a number of practical and theoretical reasons. These include the problem of establishing causation from correlational data, drawing inferences about individuals from group data, and the reliance of the interpretation of brain findings on well-established psychological findings. Brain disorders sometimes matter for moral responsibility, however, because they (...)
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  9.  79
    What is unrealistic optimism?Anneli Jefferson, Lisa Bortolotti & Bojana Kuzmanovic - 2017 - Consciousness and Cognition 50:1-2.
  10.  22
    Introduction.Anneli Jefferson, Orestis Palermos, Panos Paris & Jonathan Webber - 2022 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 92:1-3.
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  11.  49
    Are Mental Disorders Brain Disorders?Anneli Jefferson - 2022 - Routledge.
    The question of whether mental disorders are disorders of the brain has led to a long- running and controversial dispute within psychiatry, psychology and philosophy of mind and psychology. While recent work in neuroscience frequently tries to identify underlying brain dysfunction in mental disorders, detractors argue that labelling mental disorders as brain disorders is reductive and can result in harmful social effects. This book brings a much- needed philosophical perspective to bear on this important question.
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  12.  27
    Responsible Agency and the Importance of Moral Audience.Anneli Jefferson & Katrina Sifferd - 2023 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 26 (3):361-375.
    Ecological accounts of responsible agency claim that moral feedback is essential to the reasons-responsiveness of agents. In this paper, we discuss McGeer’s scaffolded reasons-responsiveness account in the light of two concerns. The first is that some agents may be less attuned to feedback from their social environment but are nevertheless morally responsible agents – for example, autistic people. The second is that moral audiences can actually work to undermine reasons-responsiveness if they espouse the wrong values. We argue that McGeer’s account (...)
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  13.  44
    Confabulation, Rationalisation and Morality.Anneli Jefferson - 2020 - Topoi 39 (1):219-227.
    In everyday confabulation and rationalisation of behaviour, agents provide sincerely believed explanations of behaviour which are ill-grounded and normally inaccurate. In this paper, I look at the commonalities and differences between confabulations and rationalisations and investigate their moral costs and benefits. Following Summers and Velleman, I argue that both can be beneficial because they constrain future behaviour through self-consistency motivations. However, I then show that the same features that make confabulations and rationalisations beneficial in some cases can also make them (...)
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  14. On Blaming and Punishing Psychopaths.Marion Godman & Anneli Jefferson - 2017 - Criminal Law and Philosophy 11 (1):127-142.
    Current legal practice holds that a diagnosis of psychopathy does not remove criminal responsibility. In contrast, many philosophers and legal experts are increasingly persuaded by evidence from experimental psychology and neuroscience indicating moral and cognitive deficits in psychopaths and have argued that they should be excused from moral responsibility. However, having opposite views concerning psychopaths’ moral responsibility, on the one hand, and criminal responsibility, on the other, seems unfortunate given the assumption that the law should, at least to some extent, (...)
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  15.  19
    Responsibility for Reckless Rape.Katrina Sifferd & Anneli Jefferson - 2022 - Humana Mente 15 (42).
    Sometimes persons are legally responsible for reckless behavior that causes criminal harm. This is the case under the newly drafted provisions of the U.S. Model Penal Code (MPC), which holds persons responsible for “simple” rape (nonconsensual sex without proof of force or threats of force), where the offender recklessly disregards the risk that the victim does not consent. In this paper we offer an explanation and corrective critique of the handling of reckless rape cases, with a focus on the U.S. (...)
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  16.  31
    Blaming the dead.Anneli Jefferson - forthcoming - European Journal of Philosophy.
    Should moral blame stop at the grave? We often blame the dead for the bad things they did while alive. But blaming the dead poses a prima facie challenge to accounts which take our blaming practices to aim at communicating moral disapproval to wrongdoers or at improving their moral agency. If these kinds of aims are made definitional for blame, blaming the dead becomes impossible. But even on accounts which say that paradigmatically, blame is a form of moral engagement which (...)
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  17.  56
    On mental illness and broken brains.Anneli Jefferson - 2021 - Think 20 (58):103-112.
    We often hear that certain mental disorders are disorders of the brain, but it is not clear what this claim amounts to. Does it mean that they are like classic brain diseases such as brain cancer? I argue that this is not the case for most mental disorders. Neither does the claim that all mental disorders are brain disorders follow from a materialist world-view. The only plausible way of understanding mental disorders as brain disorders is a fairly modest one, where (...)
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  18.  24
    Brain disorders reconsidered – a response to commentaries.Anneli Jefferson - 2024 - Philosophical Psychology 37 (3):644-657.
    In this paper, I respond to commentaries on my book “Are Mental Disorders Brain Disorders?”. The topics I discuss are: accounts of function and dysfunction, constraints on the relationship between processes at the level of the brain and the mind, externalism in psychiatry, implications for moral responsibility and the question whether my account is a form of conceptual engineering. I defend my account and argue that the key criterion for whether mental disorders are brain disorders is whether we can map (...)
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  19.  50
    Born to be biased? Unrealistic optimism and error management theory.Anneli Jefferson - 2017 - Philosophical Psychology 30 (8):1159-1175.
    When individuals display cognitive biases, they are prone to developing systematically false beliefs. Evolutionary psychologists have argued that rather than being a flaw in human cognition, biases may actually be design features. In my paper, I assess the claim that unrealistic optimism is such a design feature because it is a form of error management. Proponents of this theory say that when individuals make decisions under uncertainty, it can be advantageous to err on the side of overconfidence if the potential (...)
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  20.  69
    Why (Some) Unrealistic Optimism is Permissible in Patient Decision Making.Anneli Jefferson & Lisa Bortolotti - 2018 - American Journal of Bioethics 18 (9):27-29.
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  21.  37
    The Power of Stories: Responsibility for the Use of Autobiographical Stories in Mental Health Debates.Lisa Bortolotti & Anneli Jefferson - 2019 - Diametros 60:18-33.
    Autobiographical stories do not merely offer insights into someone’s experience but can constitute evidence or even serve as self-standing arguments for a given viewpoint in the context of public debates. Such stories are likely to exercise considerable influence on debate participants’ views and behaviour due to their being more vivid, engaging, and accessible than other forms of evidence or argument. In this paper we are interested in whether there are epistemic and moral duties associated with the use of autobiographical stories (...)
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  22.  26
    Responsibility for Reckless Rape.Katrina Sifferd & Anneli Jefferson - 2022 - Humana Mente - Journal of Philosophical Studies 42 (15):119-143.
    Sometimes persons are legally responsible for reckless behavior that causes criminal harm. This is the case under the newly drafted provisions of the U.S. Model Penal Code (MPC), which holds persons responsible for “simple” rape (nonconsensual sex without proof of force or threats of force), where the offender recklessly disregards the risk that the victim does not consent. In this paper we offer an explanation and corrective critique of the handling of reckless rape cases, with a focus on the U.S. (...)
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  23.  33
    Affective and motivational influences in person perception.Bojana Kuzmanovic, Anneli Jefferson, Gary Bente & Kai Vogeley - 2013 - Frontiers in Human Neuroscience 7.
  24.  18
    Values and Virtues for a Challenging World.Anneli Jefferson, S. Orestis Palermos, Panos Paris & Jonathan Webber (eds.) - forthcoming - Cambridge University Press.
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  25.  93
    (Almost) everything you’ve always wanted to know about moral reasoning and decision making The Oxford handbook of moral psychology, edited by Manuel Vargas and John Doris. Oxford, Oxford University Press2022, 1120 pp., $190 (hardback), ISBN: 9780198871712. [REVIEW]Anneli Jefferson - forthcoming - Philosophical Psychology.
    Moral Psychology spans both philosophy and psychology: it addresses questions concerning the role of emotions in moral judgment, the nature of moral motivation, whether human beings are ultimately...
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  26. Why Free Will Is Real. [REVIEW]Anneli Jefferson - 2020 - Philosophical Quarterly 70 (279):432-435.
    Why Free Will Is Real. By List Christian.
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  27.  31
    The effect of mental disorders on the autonomy of social beings. [REVIEW]Anneli Jefferson - forthcoming - Philosophical Psychology.
    It is commonly thought that mental disorders can undermine autonomy. In her new book, Michelle Maiese addresses the question to what extent this is the case. Her insightful book makes contributions...
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  28.  47
    David Shoemaker: Responsibility from the Margins: OUP 2015. ISBN: 9780198715672, £30. [REVIEW]Anneli Jefferson - 2017 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 20 (2):433-435.
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  29.  33
    Social Dimensions of Moral Responsibility. [REVIEW]Anneli Jefferson - 2020 - Philosophical Quarterly 70 (281):868-870.
    Social Dimensions of Moral Responsibility. Edited By Hutchison Katrina, Mackenzie Catriona, Oshana Marina.
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  30.  26
    Torbjörn Tannsjö: Taking Life: Three Theories on the Ethics of Killing: Oxford University Press. New York, 2015, 328 pages, £ 16.99. [REVIEW]Anneli Jefferson - 2016 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 19 (3):821-822.
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