"Breakdown of Will advances a novel position on motivation, the will, and the will's failures and successes." Alfred Mele, Department of Philosophy, Davidson College, North Carolina
"Breakdown of Will should interest many philosophers of pyschology...there are interesting and important ideas within the text, and it should spur fruitful philosophical discussion." Philosophy in Review
Ainslie argues that our responses to the threat of our own inconsistency determine the basic fabric of human culture. He suggests that individuals are more like populations of bargaining agents than like the hierarchal command structures envisaged by cognitive psychologists. This perspective helps us understand so much that is puzzling in human action and interaction: from self-defeating behaviors to willfulness, from pathological over-control and self-deception to subtler forms of behavior such as altruism, sadism, gambling, and the "social construction" of belief. A profound and expert account of human irrationality.