Weak-willed Animals?

In: Rationality, markets, and morals (RMM), Jg. 0 (2009) ; Perspectives in Moral Science, S. 95-108
Zeitschriftenaufsatz / Fach: Philosophie
Fakultät für Geisteswissenschaften » Institut für Philosophie
The aim of this paper is to contribute to answering the conceptual question whether there
can be weak-willed non-human animals. After some preliminary clarifications concerning
the phenomenon of weakness of will three different accounts are examined for the conditions
a being has to fulfill in order to be in a position to display weakness of will. It is
argued that these conditions are very strong and that there are good reasons to assume
that, e.g., only language users can be weak-willed. This is taken as an independent argument
for Davidson’s thesis that non-human animals which are not language users cannot
act intentionally.