•  611
    Autonomy and Depression
    In K. W. M. Fulford, Martin Davis, George Graham, John Sadler, Giovanni Stanghellini & Tim Thornton (eds.), Oxford Handbook of Philosophy and Psychiatry, Oxford University Press. pp. 1155-1170. 2013.
    In this paper, I address two related challenges the phenomenon of depression raises for conceptions according to which autonomy is an agency concept and an independent source of justification. The first challenge is directed at the claim that autonomous agency involves intending under the guise of the good: the robust though not always direct link between evaluation and motivation implied here seems to be severed in some instances of depression; yet, this does not seem to affect the possibility …Read more
  •  428
    Three challenges from delusion for theories of autonomy
    with K. W. M. Fulford
    In Lubomira Radoilska (ed.), Autonomy and Mental Disorder, Oxford University Press. pp. 44-74. 2012.
    This chapter identifies and explores a series of challenges raised by the clinical concept of delusion for theories which conceive autonomy as an agency rather than a status concept. The first challenge is to address the autonomy-impairing nature of delusions consistently with their role as grounds for full legal and ethical excuse, on the one hand, and psychopathological significance as key symptoms of psychoses, on the other. The second challenge is to take into account the full logical range …Read more
  •  350
    Addiction and Weakness of Will
    Oxford University Press. 2013.
    Mental conflict not always amounts to weakness of will. Irresistible motives not always speak of addiction. This book proposes an integrated account of what singles out these phenomena: addiction and weakness of will are both forms of secondary akrasia. By integrating these two phenomena into a classical conception of akrasia as poor resolution of an unnecessary conflict – valuing without intending while intending without valuing – the book makes an original contribution to central issues in mor…Read more
  •  342
    Akrasia and Ordinary Weakness of Will
    Tópicos 43 25-50. 2012.
    In this article, I develop an Aristotelian account of akrasia as a primary failure of intentional agency in contrast to a phenomenon I refer to as ‘ordinary weakness of will’: I argue that ordinary weakness of will is best understood as a secondary failure of intentional agency, that to tackle akrasia.
  •  310
    Autonomy and Ulysses Arrangements
    In Lubomira Radoilska (ed.), Autonomy and Mental Disorder, Oxford University Press. pp. 252-280. 2012.
    In this chapter, I articulate the structure of a general concept of autonomy and then reply to possible objections with reference to Ulysses arrangements in psychiatry. The line of argument is as follows. Firstly, I examine three alternative conceptions of autonomy: value-neutral, value-laden, and relational. Secondly, I identify two paradigm cases of autonomy and offer a sketch of its concept as opposed to the closely related freedom of action and intentional agency. Finally, I explain away the…Read more
  •  308
    An aristotelian approach to cognitive enhancement
    Journal of Value Inquiry 44 (3). 2010.
    In this paper, I argue that cognitive enhancement cannot be epistemically beneficial since getting things right in particular and epistemic agency in general both presuppose a kind of achievement. Drawing on Aristotle’s ethics, I distinguish four categories of actions: caused, attributable, responsible, and creditable. I conclude that to the extent that cognitive enhancement is incompatible with the latter category it undermines rather than strengthens autonomous agency in the realm of cognition
  •  261
    Truthfulness and Business
    Journal of Business Ethics 79 (1-2). 2008.
    According to a common assumption, truthfulness cannot have an intrinsic value in business. Instead, it is considered only instrumentally valuable for business, because it contributes to successful trust-building. Some authors deny truthfulness even this limited role by claiming that truth-telling is not an essential part of business, which is a sui generis practice like poker. In this article, I argue that truthfulness has indeed an intrinsic value in business and identify the conceptual confusi…Read more
  •  192
    Immigration, interpersonal trust and national culture
    Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 17 (1): 111-128. 2014.
    This article offers a critical analysis of David Miller’s proposal that liberal immigration policies should be conceptualized in terms of a quasi-contract between receiving nations and immigrant groups, designed to ensure both that cultural diversity does not undermine trust among citizens and that immigrants are treated fairly. This proposal fails to address sufficiently two related concerns. Firstly, an open-ended, quasi-contractual requirement for cultural integration leaves immigrant groups e…Read more
  •  127
  •  99
    Autonomy and Mental Disorder (edited book)
    Oxford University Press. 2012.
    Autonomy is a fundamental though contested concept both in philosophy and the broader intellectual culture of today’s liberal societies. For instance, most of us place great value on the opportunity to make our own decisions and to lead a life of our own choosing. Yet, there is stark disagreement on what is involved in being able to decide autonomously, as well as how important this is compared to other commitments. For example, the success of every group project requires that group members make…Read more
  •  77
    Circumstance, Answerability, and Luck
    The Monist 104 (2): 155-167. 2021.
    This paper identifies a distinctive kind of moral luck, deep circumstantial luck and then explores its effects on moral responsibility. A key feature of the phenomenon is that it is recurrent rather than one-off. It also affects agents across a wide range of situations making it difficult to detect. Deeply unlucky agents are subject to unfavourable moral assessments through no fault of their own both in specific cases and when they try to respond to such initial assessments. In this respect, dee…Read more
  •  73
    Akrasia and Ordinary Weakness of Will
    Tópicos: Revista de Filosofía 43 25-50. 2012.
    This article offers an account of akrasia as a primary failure of intentional agency in contrast to a recent account of weakness of will, developed by Richard Holton, that also points to a kind of failure of intentional agency but presents this as both separate from akrasia and more fundamental than it. Drawing on Aristotle’s work, it is argued that the failure of intentional agency articulated by the concept of akrasia is the central case, whereas the phenomenon Holton’s account is after, refer…Read more
  •  64
    « Espace privé et espace public s’imbriquent. Vie privée et vie publique se percutent. Intimité et “extimité” se combinent. For intérieur et for extérieur se répondent. Toutefois, tandis que l’espace privé, la vie privée et maintenant l’intimité accèdent à la visibilité, le for intérieur demeure, pour l’instant, à l’abri des feux de la rampe. Les cas de conscience,...
  •  60
    Weakness of will, or akrasia, is an exciting issue at the heart of moral psychology and the philosophy of mind and action. This articleoffers a problem-centered guide to the relevant literature in contemporary analytic philosophy with reference to the main classical texts. The topics covered include: contemporary versus classical conceptions of akrasia, the possibility of weakness of will and its significance within instrumental and substantive theories of practical rationality, the nature of ak…Read more
  •  43
    Lessons from Akrasia in Substance Misuse: a Clinicophilosophical Discussion
    with K. D. Fletcher
    BJ Psych Advances 22 (4): 234-241. 2016.
    This article explores the philosophical concept of akrasia, also known as weakness of will, and demonstrates its relevance to clinical practice. In particular, it challenges an implicit notion of control over one’s actions that might impede recovery from substance misuse. Reflecting on three fictional case vignettes, we show how philosophical work on akrasia helps avoid this potentially harmful notion of control by supporting a holistic engagement with people for whom substance misuse is a probl…Read more
  •  43
    Dimensions of Responsibility
    Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 21 (4): 771-773. 2018.
    This Editorial to the 20th Anniversary Issue of Ethical Theory and Moral Practice outlines key challenges and opportunities arising from the recent explosion of responsibility studies in different areas. The underlying ambition is to counter the trend of fragmenting the philosophical debate around responsibility by bringing together helpful insights on related dimensions. The discussion is organised around three main themes: (1) Accountability, Attributability, Answerability, Liability; (2) Indi…Read more
  •  39
    This chapter aims to address two related challenges the phenomenon of depression raises for theories which present autonomy as an agency concept and an independent source of justification. The first challenge is directed at an intuitive conception of intentional agency as implying a robust though not always direct link between evaluation and motivation, for in depression what appears to be choice-worthy does not get chosen. The second challenge targets the feasibility of a reliable distinction b…Read more
  •  37
    The paper articulates a new understanding of individual responsibility focused on exercises of agency in reason-giving rather than intentional actions or attitudes towards others. Looking at how agents make sense of their actions, we identify a distinctive but underexplored space for assessing individual responsibility within collective actions. As a case in point, we concentrate on reason-giving for one's own involvement in systemic corruption. We characterize systemic corruption in terms of it…Read more
  •  36
    « Espace privé et espace public s’imbriquent. Vie privée et vie publique se percutent. Intimité et “extimité” se combinent. For intérieur et for extérieur se répondent. Toutefois, tandis que l’espace privé, la vie privée et maintenant l’intimité accèdent à la visibilité, le for intérieur demeure, pour l’instant, à l’abri des feux de la rampe. Les cas de conscience,..
  •  35
    This chapter aims to distinguish between pathologies of agency in the strict sense and mere sources of impediments or distortion. Expanding on a recent notion of necessarily less-than-successful agency, it complements a mainstream approach to mental disorders and anomalous psychological conditions in the philosophy of mind and action. According this approach, the interest of such clinical case studies is heuristic, to differentiate between facets of agency that are functionally and conceptually …Read more
  •  33
    Distinguishing value-neutrality from value-independence: Toward a new disentangling strategy for moral epistemology
    In Mark McBride & Visa A. J. Kurki (eds.), Without Trimmings: The Legal, Moral and Political Philosophy of Matthew Kramer, . forthcoming.
    This chapter outlines a new disentangling strategy for moral epistemology. It builds on the fundamental distinction between value-neutrality and value-independence as two separate aspects of methodological austerity introduced by Matthew Kramer. This type of conceptual analysis is then applied to two major challenges in moral epistemology: globalised scepticism and debate fragmentation. Both challenges arise from collapsing the fact/value dichotomy. They can be addressed by comprehensive disenta…Read more
  •  31
    Ethical Theory and Moral Practice at 24
    Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 24 (1): 1-3. 2021.
    This Editorial outlines recent developments in the Journal’s scope, mission and review policy. It also illustrates the range of topics addressed on the pages of Ethical Theory and Moral Practice, which is now entering its 24th year.
  •  25
    This monograph provides a critical examination of autonomy in connection to moral knowledge. Drawing on Aristotle’s moral psychology, it is argued that moral judgments aim at knowledge; however, this does not undermine their action-guiding character.
  •  18
    Aiming at the truth and aiming at success
    Philosophical Explorations 20 (sup1): 111-126. 2017.
    This paper explores how the norms of belief relate to the norms of action. The discussion centres on addressing a challenge from positive illusions stating that the demands we face as believers aiming at the truth and the demands we face as agents aiming at success often pull in opposite directions. In response to this challenge, it is argued that the pursuits of aiming at the truth and aiming at success are fully compatible and mutually reinforcing. More specifically, the link between the two t…Read more
  •  15
    Revisiting Epistemic Injustice in the Context of Agency
    Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 23 (5): 703-706. 2020.
    What makes an injustice epistemic rather than ethical or political? How does the former, more recent category relate to the latter, better-known forms of injustice? To address these questions, the papers of this Special Issue investigate epistemic injustice in close connection to different conceptions of agency, both epistemic and practical.
  •  14
    This chapter explores four kinds of skepticism about autonomy in general and its applicability to psychiatric ethics in particular. It is argued that although there are valuable lessons to be learnt from each of these skeptical challenges, their overall contribution is best understood in terms of friendly correctives to an autonomy-centered normative and conceptual framework instead of viable alternatives to it. The first four sections each provide a logical reconstruction of a distinct skeptica…Read more