The Philosophy of Moods

Journée d'étude organisée par l'Institut Jean Nicod

Matin : Salle du centre Cavaillès, ENS, 29 rue d'Ulm 75005 Paris
11h30-13h: Stéphane Lemaire (Université de Rennes1)
"Unconscious emotions and emotions without conscious intentional object".
Abstract: Philosophers have been inclined to defend theories of emotions according to which they are conscious experiences. This is true of the perceptualist view of emotions and of various neo-jamesian theories of emotions. On the other hand, psychologists are more prone to accept that emotions are mere processes and that it is not essential for them to be conscious. In this presentation, I argue that psychologists are to a large extent correct and that we should distinguish emotions from the conscious experiences which we may have of them. I consider and reject two arguments that might be advanced to defend philosophers' views. First, I explain in what sense it is possible for an emotion to lack a conscious intentional object without lacking intentionality. Second, I argue that we have no reason to believe that experiences of emotions are of a irreducible kind that would justify them as being essentially conscious.

Apres-midi :  Salle de réunion, RDC, Institut Nicod, ENS, 29, rue d'Ulm 75005 Paris
15h-16h30: Christine Tappolet (Université de Montréal)
"The Metaphysics of Moods"
Abstract: Moods are familiar, but their nature is elusive. After presenting three important characteristics of paradigmatic moods, like anxiety or irritability, I discuss the main accounts that have been proposed in the literature, namely, dispositional accounts and accounts according to which moods are kinds of emotions, such as the generalized emotions accounts. I argue that these accounts are flawed and have to be replaced by the view that moods concern the likelihood of evaluative possibilities.
16h30-18h: Uriah Kriegel (CNRS, IJN)
"The Phenomenal Intentionality of Moods"
Abstract: Moods are sometimes claimed to constitute the sole exception to the thesis that all mental phenomena are intentional: their phenomenal character is said to be diffuse and undirected, in a way that rules out a characterization in intentional terms. This paper considers three attempts to provide an intentional account of moods after all – two already present in the extant literature, and a novel third one. The first account, which I call ‘global intentionalism,’ claims that moods represent the world as a whole, or everything indiscriminately, without representing anything in particular. The second account, which I call ‘objectless intentionalism,’ claims that moods represent ‘unbound properties,’ that is, properties that are not any thing’s properties. The third account, which I call ‘impure intentionalism,’ does not attempt to characterize moods in terms of what they might represent, but rather in terms of how they represent, that is, in terms of a distinctive manner or mode in which they represent what (if anything) they do. I argue that the first two accounts face severe difficulties which a version of the third elegantly overcomes.


Mis à jour le 30/5/2017