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Addiction and rational judgment 

Addiction and rational judgment
Chapter:
Addiction and rational judgment
Author(s):

Lubomira Radoilska

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199641963.003.0002
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date: 12 November 2019

This chapter looks into an alternative, non-volitional conception where the basic responsibility condition is not voluntary control but evaluative judgement. By upholding the parity of actions and attitudes as legitimate objects of moral appraisal, this non-volitional conception should be in a better position to tackle responsibility for addiction. To assess this initial hypothesis, I consider a possible challenge, which is to account for instances of responsible irrationality, such as conflicting attitudes and akratic emotions where the agent’s evaluative stance isn’t clear. Having concluded that the challenge cannot be addressed satisfactorily form within the non-volitional conception, I raise the hypothesis that there could be a third, more fundamental conception of responsibility that underpins the volitional and non-volitional conceptions, and integrates their respective insights. Looking at pleasure in the portraits of addiction by De Quincey and Dostoevsky, I argue that the non-volitional focus on evaluative stance is an insight worth keeping.

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