<philosophical terminology> inability to carry out an action in accordance with reason or virtue. Socrates held that agents never knowingly do wrong, but Aristotle maintained that the influence of the passions often results in incontinence. Recommended Reading: Justin C. B. Gosling, Weakness of the Will (Routledge, 1990); Robert Dunn, The Possibility of Weakness of Will (Hackett, 1987); and Alfred R. Mele, Irrationality: An Essay on Akrasia, Self-Deception, and Self-Control (Oxford, 1992).
[A Dictionary of Philosophical Terms and Names]
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