Download Addiction and Self-Control: Perspectives from Philosophy, by Neil Levy PDF

By Neil Levy

This ebook brings jointly a suite of papers, many which develop out of displays at a convention in Oxford in 2009 on habit and self-discipline, via a suite of thinkers who're united in believing that knowing enterprise and screw ups of organisation calls for engagement with the simplest technological know-how. The papers it collects makes an attempt to light up the mechanisms focused on dependancy and thereby to appreciate to what measure and in what methods activities pushed by means of habit are managed via the agent, convey his or her will or values, and the level to which addicts are chargeable for what they do. many of the papers specialise in the neuropsychological mechanisms concerned, specially at the position of the midbrain dopamine process. Others specialise in gains of the habit and the level to which we will infer mental mechanisms from habit. The authors debate the simplest interpretation of the clinical proof and the way the clinical facts bears upon, or can purely be comprehend within the gentle of, philosophical theorizing approximately supplier, regulate and accountability.

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Extra resources for Addiction and Self-Control: Perspectives from Philosophy, Psychology, and Neuroscience

Example text

When we are free of, or have satiated, our physical deprivation states, most of the reward we seek comes from expectations we construct of the future, our rehearsal of the past, and occasions for emotion that we have in the present, which are often but Money as MacGuffin 25 not necessarily connected to physical rewards. We conjure up so much that is not in our current sensory fields that we live as if in a video game, cultivating some scenarios and trying to avoid others, able even to prevent the intrusion of physical reality in many cases, but unable to prevent the intrusion of remembered or imagined horror in other cases.

The creation of singular occasions is elementary in a game such as solitaire: We bind ourselves with a personal rule that defines steps toward a scarce outcome. 10 Solitaire pays off poorly if we just imagine winning, or cheat. It pays off most when we win with optimal infrequency; only that scenario induces enough appetite to make the game more rewarding than not playing at all. Solitaire has, after all, no instrumental use. Setting up a challenge—making it important, “betting on it”—is the basic process for exploiting 10.

However, I also suggest that Ainslie’s account of the difference between nonaddicted and addicted gamblers is incomplete in a more specific and dissatisfying way. Addicted gamblers, Ainslie avers, are those who become “preoccupied” with gambling and use the stimulation it provides as a substitute for rewards they cannot enjoy from other aspects of their lives, either because the rewards in question are put out of reach by circumstances and limited ability or because they are achievable but arouse insufficient appetite.

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