REI Colloquium – Martina Orlandi

REI Colloquium – Martina Orlandi
Jan 25, 2022
– 2:00PM

‘I Knew All Along’: Post-Self-Deception Judgments and Hindsight Bias

By Martina Orlandi, Postdoctoral Scholar in Engaged Ethics in the Rock Ethics Institute and Schreyer Honors College

People lie to themselves about a wide variety of subjects. In the fortunate circumstances, where those who manage to eschew self-deception embrace reality, an interesting phenomenon occurs: the formerly self-deceived person often confesses to having ‘known [the truth] all along’. What should we make of these post-self-deception judgments? This is question I explore in this talk. I argue that these post-self-deception judgments are not conceptually innocuous because if genuine, they call into question the core feature of prominent theories of self-deception, that self-deceived individuals do not believe the unwelcome truth. Philosophers have attempted to overcome this challenge by arguing that these retrospective judgments are unreliable, and therefore that self-deception theories are under no obligation to accommodate them. However, these attempts have not provided any substantive arguments for why post-self-deception judgments are not to be trusted. I argue that post-self-deception judgments are instances of hindsight bias, in particular, that they are instances of foreseeability caused by motivational inputs. As a result, I caution against trust in post-self-deception judgments, which may not accurately track previous self-deceptive experiences.

This event is open to the public. To attend, please send a request for the Zoom link to by noon on the day of the event.

Topic(s): General, Global Issues