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Surrounding Self-Control$
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Alfred R. Mele

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780197500941

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780197500941.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 02 December 2021

Exploring the Roles of Emotions in Self-Control

Exploring the Roles of Emotions in Self-Control

(p.116) 7 Exploring the Roles of Emotions in Self-Control
Surrounding Self-Control

Andrea Scarantino

Oxford University Press

Self-control has been understood since Ancient Greece as reason winning in the battle with emotion. This is an idea that contemporary “divided mind” accounts of self-control take for granted, assuming that emotions are a threat to one’s ability to do what one judges best, all things considered. This historically influential picture neglects the emotions’ potential as tools for self-control. This chapter argues that emotions can help self-control by virtue of how they motivate, by virtue of how they feel, and by virtue of how they evaluate the self. At the same time, each of these three channels can also lead emotions to undermine self-control. Thus, whereas a “divided mind” account recommends fostering self-control by preventing emotions from interfering, the author recommends fostering self-control by developing affective strategies that harness the distinctive powers of emotions to work for self-control rather than against it.

Keywords:   self-control, emotion, emotion regulation, feelings, motivation, mood repair, appraisal

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