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Philosophy Department Colloquium: Idealization and the Heart of Subjectivism

Friday, March 20, 2015
4:00 AM
3222 Angell Hall


Recent discussions of subjectivist theories of the good (and similar theories of practical reason) have focused on the tendency of subjectivism to rely heavily on various forms of idealization—my good is determined not by what I desire, but what I would desire with, say, full information or full experience, and so on.  I argue that both critics and defenders of such idealization have erred in failing to recognize that idealization can play very different roles when it comes to constructing a subjectivist theory.  The heart of subjectivism, or so I argue, commands that our pro-attitudes be idealized.  But not, as it happens, in the way most subjectivists think.