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Humean NatureHow desire explains action, thought, and feeling$
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Neil Sinhababu

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198783893

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198783893.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use.date: 19 May 2022

Desire and Vividness

Desire and Vividness

(p.118) 7 Desire and Vividness
Humean Nature

Neil Sinhababu

Oxford University Press

All of desire’s other properties are amplified when its object is vividly sensed or imagined. Chapter 7 uses this property of desire, Amplification by Vividness, to explain procrastination and akratic actions where we believe that an action is wrong but do it anyway. Desire responds more violently to vividly represented temptation than to less vividly represented goals we believe we ought to pursue. Vivid representations can affect our motivation even if we believe they’re inaccurate. They can make us act irrationally and play the role of “aliefs”. That desire’s ability to be amplified by vividness explains such a broad range of emotional and motivational phenomena is evidence for the Humean Theory.

Keywords:   Desire, Vividness, Imagination, Procrastination, Akrasia, Irrationality, Alief

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