SOPhiA 2018

Salzburgiense Concilium Omnibus Philosophis Analyticis

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Programme - Talk

A Nietzschean Account of Valuing
(History of Philosophy, English)

A In this paper I give an account of Nietzsche's conception of valuing. I address the descriptive question of what it means for someone to value something, rather than the normative question of whether what someone values is in fact valuable. I argue that, for Nietzsche: valuing X means having a positive affective orientation toward X induced by one's strongest drives. I develop my view in response to Katsafanas' 2016 account. Katsafanas improves upon previous accounts by incorporating drives and affects into a single account of Nietzschean value. Previous accounts had only incorporated either one or the other. Nevertheless, I will identify two problems with his view. I argue that since my view avoids the two problems in Katsafanas' account, in addition to three further problems that he identifies in the secondary literature, it marks an improvement on existing accounts of Nietzschean valuing.
Katsafanas argues that an agent values X iff the agent (1) has a drive-induced positive affective orientation toward X, and (2) does not disapprove of this affective orientation. My two criticisms correspond to Katsafanas' conditions (1) and (2) respectively. The first criticism is that the condition that only drive-induced affects count as values does not carve out a genuine subset of affects. I provide textural evidence to show that all affects are drive-induced for Nietzsche. The second criticism is that disapproval in condition (2) is ambiguous. I show that condition (2) becomes redundant when we have an adequate grasp of what disapproval means for Nietzsche.
My account addresses the two problems with Katsafanas account in addition to three problems that he finds in Richardson, Poellner, and Clark & Dudrick's accounts. Firstly, unlike Richardson's account, my account does not imply that we value the ends of all of our drives, only the ends of our strongest drives. Secondly, unlike Poellner's account, it does not include fleeting attractions as values, since our strongest drives induce affects that structure our behaviour over long stretches of time. Thirdly, unlike Clark & Dudrick's it does not require that we reflect on the justificatory status of all of our values and it allows us to have values of which we are unaware. Finally, it accounts for the way in which Nietzsche thinks that drives explain our consciously espoused values.

Chair: Rareș Fogaș
Time: 15:20-15:50, 12 September 2018 (Wednesday)
Location: HS E.002

Charles Boddicker 
(University of Southampton, United Kingdom)

I am a third year PhD student at the University of Southampton. My research focuses on Nietzsche's accounts of the drives and affects and how these relate to what he thinks it means to value something.

Testability and Meaning deco