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Weird Wants

Is it weird to want to do things that may be bad for us?

Philosophers from Thomas Aquinas to Elizabeth Anscombe have claimed that wanting something means seeing the good in it. Even if what you want is bad overall, like procrastinating on important work, you can still desire it for its positive qualities. But don't we sometimes want things because of their badness, not in spite of it? Isn't there joy in doing something totally pointless, or even in breaking the rules? And is it really impossible, logically speaking, to want to be bad? Josh and Ray unravel our weird wants with Paul Bloom from the University of Toronto, author of The Sweet Spot: The Pleasures of Suffering and the Search for Meaning. Sunday, August 20 at 11 am.

Devon Strolovitch studied medieval Judeo-Portuguese manuscripts and earned a PhD in Linguistics from Cornell University before coming to KALW. He is the Senior Producer of Philosophy Talk, and since 2007 has hosted Fog City Blues, the weekly digest of Blues in the Bay Area and beyond.