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Normative Ethics

Edited by Jussi Suikkanen (University of Birmingham)
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  1. added 2016-05-03
    Olivier Massin (forthcoming). Desires, Values and Norms. In Federico Lauria & Julien Deonna (eds.), The Nature of Desire. Oxford University Press
    The thesis defended, the “guise of the ought”, is that the formal objects of desires are norms (oughts to be or oughts to do) rather than values (as the “guise of the good” thesis has it). It is impossible, in virtue of the nature of desire, to desire something without it being presented as something that ought to be or that one ought to do. This view is defended by pointing to a key distinction between values and norms: positive and (...)
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  2. added 2016-05-03
    Marc A. Cohen (2016). The Question of Public Trust in Business. [REVIEW] Journal of Trust Research 6 (1):96-103.
    Jared D. Harris, Brian T. Moriarty, and Andrew C. Wicks’ recent book collects eleven chapters by well-known scholars on the question of public trust in business, published along with an introduction and conclusion by the editors. But the collection doesn’t make progress on what this reviewer takes to be the two essential questions. This review outlines those questions and then addresses a further, more technical difficulty with the conceptualizations of trust at work across the chapters. The central theme here is (...)
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  3. added 2016-05-02
    Richard Oxenberg, On the Mystical Element in Moral Offense: An Existential Inquiry.
    Moral violation often takes the form of material harm, which might lead us to suppose that it consists essentially in the harm done. And yet we might suffer the same harm through nature or accident without feeling morally offended. If I lose my property through accident, I suffer harm but no offense. If someone maliciously destroys my property, I am offended. But why? Wherein lies the difference? My essay employs Arthur Schopenhauer’s ethic of egoism and Paul Tillich’s theology of love (...)
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  4. added 2016-04-30
    Thaddeus Metz (forthcoming). Happiness and Meaning in Life: The Sweet Spot Where They Meet. In Leo Bormans (ed.), The World Book of Happiness: Happiness 2.0. Lannoo Publishing
    A 750 word statement, composed for a lay audience, of respects in which happiness and meaningfulness can come apart, but highlighting the aim of engaging in projects in which they are co-present.
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  5. added 2016-04-30
    Jonas Olson (2016). Thomas Hurka, British Ethical Theorists From Sidgwick to Ewing , Pp. Xiv + 310. Utilitas 28 (2):234-237.
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  6. added 2016-04-30
    Paul Weithman (2016). Harry Frankfurt, On Inequality , Pp. Xi + 102. Utilitas 28 (2):227-234.
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  7. added 2016-04-28
    Leslie Allan, The Principle of Double Effect.
    Absolutist systems of ethics have come in for harsh criticism on a number of fronts. The Principle of Double Effect was formulated by Catholic ethicists to overcome such objections. In this essay, Leslie Allan addresses four of the most prominent problems faced by an absolutist ethic and evaluates the extent to which the Principle of Double Effect is successful in avoiding or mitigating these criticisms.
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  8. added 2016-04-28
    Anthony Carreras (forthcoming). Amicably Deceived. Philosophical Papers.
    A widely accepted thesis in the philosophy of friendship is what I call "the self-knowledge thesis," which says that good friendship is essentially such as to conduce to self-knowledge. I argue in this paper that the self-knowledge thesis is false. Good friendship need not conduce to self-knowledge, for it is part of the nature and value of friendship that it might lead us to form false beliefs about ourselves.
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  9. added 2016-04-28
    Jonathan Webber (2015). Character, Attitude and Disposition. European Journal of Philosophy 23 (4):1082-1096.
    Recent debate over the empirical psychological presuppositions of virtue ethics has focused on reactive behavioural dispositions. But there are many character traits that cannot be understood properly in this way. Such traits are well described by attitude psychology. Moreover, the findings of attitude psychology support virtue ethics in three ways. First, they confirm the role of habituation in the development of character. Further, they show virtue ethics to be compatible with the situation manipulation experiments at the heart of the recent (...)
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  10. added 2016-04-27
    Michael Cholbi (forthcoming). Understanding Kant's Ethics. Cambridge University Press.
    Preface -/- Introduction -/- PART I -/- 1 Kant’s pursuit of the Supreme Principle of Morality -/- 2 The Categorical Imperative and the Kantian theory of value, part I -/- 3 The Categorical Imperative and the Kantian theory of value, part II -/- 4 Dignity -/- 5 Freedom, reason, and the possibility of the Categorical Imperative -/- PART II -/- 6 Objections to the Formula of Universal Law -/- 7 Three problems in Kant’s practical ethics -/- 8 Reason and sentiment: (...)
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  11. added 2016-04-27
    Bronwyn Finnigan (forthcoming). The Nature of a Buddhist Path: Is There a Single Approach to Buddhist Ethical Theory? In Jake Davis (ed.), TBA. Oxford
    Is there a ‘common element’ in Buddhist ethical thought from which one might rationally reconstruct a Buddhist normative ethical theory? Many construe this as the question: which contemporary normative theory does Buddhist ethics best approximate; consequentialism or virtue ethics? This paper will argue that two distinct evaluative relations underlie these distinct positions; an instrumental and constitutive analysis. It will raise some difficulties for linking these distinct analyses to particular normative ethical theories but will give reasons to think that both may (...)
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  12. added 2016-04-27
    Michael Cholbi (2016). The Denial of Moral Dilemmas as a Regulative Ideal. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 46 (2):268-289.
    The traditional debate about moral dilemmas concerns whether there are circumstances in which an agent is subject to two obligations that cannot both be fulfilled. Realists maintain there are. Irrealists deny this. Here I defend an alternative, methodologically-oriented position wherein the denial of genuine moral dilemmas functions as a regulative ideal for moral deliberation and practice. That is, moral inquiry and deliberation operate on the implicit assumption that there are no genuine moral dilemmas. This (...)
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  13. added 2016-04-27
    Thaddeus Metz (2011). The African Ethic of Ubuntu/Botho. In Sharlene Swarz & Monica Taylor (eds.), Moral Education in Sub-Saharan Africa. Routledge 7-24.
    In this chapter, a reprint of an article initially appearing in the Journal of Moral Education (2010), we provide a theoretical reconstruction of sub-Saharan ethics that we argue is a strong competitor to typical Western approaches to morality. According to our African moral theory, actions are right roughly insofar as they are a matter of living harmoniously with others or honouring communal relationships. After spelling out this ethic, we apply it to several issues in both normative and empirical research into (...)
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  14. added 2016-04-25
    Andrew Ingram (2013). A (Moral) Prisoner's Dilemma: Character Ethics and Plea Bargaining. Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law 11 (1):161-177.
    Plea bargains are the stock-in-trade of the modern American prosecutor’s office. The basic scenario, wherein a defendant agrees to plea guilty in exchange for a reduced sentence, is familiar to viewers of police procedurals. In an equally famous variation on the theme, the prosecutor requests something more than an admission of guilt: leniency will only be forthcoming if the defendant is willing to cooperate with the prosecutor in securing the conviction of another suspect. In some of these cases, the defendant (...)
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  15. added 2016-04-25
    Jeannine Ross Boyer & James Lindemann Nelson (1990). A Comment on Fry's “The Role of Caring in a Theory of Nursing Ethics”. Hypatia 5 (3):153-158.
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  16. added 2016-04-22
    Leonhard Menges (forthcoming). The Emotion Account of Blame. Philosophical Studies:1-17.
    For a long time the dominant view on the nature of blame was that to blame someone is to have an emotion toward her, such as anger, resentment or indignation in the case of blaming someone else and guilt in the case of self-blame. Even though this view is still widely held, it has recently come under heavy attack. The aim of this paper is to elaborate the idea that to blame is to have an emotion (...)
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  17. added 2016-04-22
    Markus Kohl (forthcoming). The Normativity of Prudence. Kant-Studien.
    Kant's account of “precepts of prudence” raises a striking interpretive puzzle. On the one hand, he presents such precepts as normative-practical rules; on the other hand, he relegates them to theoretical philosophy. I argue that to render these two strands coherent, we must assume that our empirical nature is a source of normativity for us: prudence is normative for us just because we have an “unconditional” empirical desire for obtaining happiness, a maximum of pleasant sensations. Since rules of prudence cognize (...)
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  18. added 2016-04-22
    Clea F. Rees (2016). A Virtue Ethics Response to Implicit Bias. In Michael Brownstein & Jennifer Saul (eds.), Implicit Bias and Philosophy, Volume 2: Moral Responsibility, Structural Injustice, and Ethics. Oxford University Press 191-214.
    Virtue ethics faces two challenges based in ‘dual-process’ models of cognition. The classic situationist worry is that we just do not have reliable motivations at all. One promising response invokes an alternative model of cognition which can accommodate evidence cited in support of dual-process models without positing distinct systems for automatic and deliberative processing. The approach appeals to the potential of automatization to habituate virtuous motivations. This response is threatened by implicit bias which raises the worry that we cannot (...)
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  19. added 2016-04-21
    Christian Miller (forthcoming). Categorizing Character: Moving Beyond the Aristotelian Framework. In David Carr (ed.), Varieties of Virtue Ethics. Palgrave Macmillan
    Philosophers have inherited a familiar taxonomy of character types from Aristotle. We are all acquainted with the labels of the virtuous, vicious, continent, and incontinent person. The goal of this paper is to argue that we should jettison this framework. The main reason is that psychological research in the past fifty years has suggested a much more complex picture of moral character than what can be usefully captured by these four categories. In its place, I will suggest a better taxonomy (...)
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  20. added 2016-04-21
    Isidora Stojanovic (forthcoming). Relativism. In David Plunkett & Tristram McPherson (eds.), The Handbook of Metaethics. Routledge
    Although relativism may be said to be one of the oldest doctrines in philosophy, dating back to the teachings of Protagoras in the 5th century B.C., when it comes to contemporary philosophy, there is no consensus on what makes a view qualify as "relativist". The problem is particularly accute in metaethics, since most of the views that up to a decade ago were described as “relativist” would be more accurately described as "contextualist" or even “expressivist” in light of the distinctions (...)
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  21. added 2016-04-18
    Herbert Roseman, Spinoza's Ethics as a Mathematical Object.
    Spinoza’s geometrical approach to his masterwork, the Ethics, can be represented by a digraph, a mathematical object whose properties have been extensively studied. The paper describes a project that developed a series of computer programs to analyze the Ethics as a digraph. The paper presents a statistical analysis of the distribution of the elements of the Ethics. It applies a network statistic, betweenness, to analyze the relative importance to Spinoza’s argument of the individual propositions. The paper finds that a small (...)
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  22. added 2016-04-18
    Joshua May (forthcoming). Empathy and Intersubjectivity. In Heidi Maibom (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Empathy. Routledge
    Empathy is intersubjective in that it connects us mentally with others. Some theorists believe that by blurring the distinction between self and other empathy can provide a radical form of altruism that grounds all of morality and even a kind of immortality. Others are more pessimistic and maintain that in distorting the distinction between self and other empathy precludes genuine altruism. Even if these positions exaggerate self-other merging, empathy’s intersubjectivity can perhaps ground ordinary altruism and the rational recognition that one (...)
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  23. added 2016-04-15
    Isaac Wiegman (2015). The Evolution of Retribution: Intuitions Undermined. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 97 (1):n/a-n/a.
    Recent empirical work suggests that emotions are responsible for anti-consequentialist intuitions. For instance, anger places value on actions of revenge and retribution, value not derived from the consequences of these actions. As a result, it contributes to the development of retributive intuitions. I argue that if anger evolved to produce these retributive intuitions because of their biological consequences, then these intuitions are not a good indicator that punishment has value apart from its consequences. This severs the evidential connection between retributive (...)
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  24. added 2016-04-15
    Oskar Kraus (1937). Die Werttheorien, Geschichte Und Kritik. Rudolf Rohrer.
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  25. added 2016-04-15
    Oskar Kraus (1901). Zur Theorie des Wertes. Max Niemeyer.
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  26. added 2016-04-14
    Marion Smiley (2016). Volitional Excuses, Self-Narration, and Blame. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 15 (1):85-101.
    This article has three parts. The first argues that excuses such as "I didn't know" and "I couldn't help myself" are not, as we are frequently led to believe, vehicles for discovering whether or not an individual's will was free. Instead, they are self-narratives that we produce for the purpose of avoiding blame. The second part explores the particular notion of non-responsibility that governs these self-narratives. The third articulates the role that our judgments of fairness play in decisions to accept (...)
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  27. added 2016-04-14
    Dustin Garlitz (2014). Morality. In Sherwood Thompson (ed.), Encyclopedia of Diversity and Social Justice. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
  28. added 2016-04-13
    Eleonora Severini (forthcoming). Evolutionary Debunking Arguments and the Moral Niche. Philosophia:1-11.
    The so-called Evolutionary Debunking Arguments are arguments that appeal to the evolutionary genealogy of our beliefs to undermine their justification. When applied to morality, such arguments are intended to undermine moral realism. In this paper I will discuss Andreas Mogensen’s recent effort to secure moral realism against EDAs. Mogensen attempts to undermine the challenge provided by EDAs in metaethics through the distinction between proximate and ultimate causes in biology. The problem with this move is that the proximate/ultimate distinction is misconceived. (...)
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  29. added 2016-04-12
    Jonas Olson (forthcoming). Brentano's Metaethics. In U. Kriegel (ed.), Routledge Handbook of Brentano and the Brentano School. Routledge
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  30. added 2016-04-11
    Berit Brogaard & Chudnoff Elijah (forthcoming). Against Emotional Dogmatism. Philosophical Issues 26.
    It may seem that when you have an emotional response to a perceived object or event that makes it seem to you that the perceived source of the emotion possesses some evaluative property, then you thereby have prima facie, immediate justification for believing that the object or event possesses the evaluative property. Call this view ‘dogmatism about emotional justification’. We defend a view of the structure of emotional awareness according to which the objects of emotional awareness are derived from other (...)
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  31. added 2016-04-11
    Rosemary Betterton (2006). Promising Monsters: Pregnant Bodies, Artistic Subjectivity, and Maternal Imagination. Hypatia 21 (1):80-100.
  32. added 2016-04-10
    Douglas W. Portmore, Maximalism Vs. Omnism About Reasons.
    The performance of one option can entail the performance of another. For instance, I have the option of baking a pumpkin pie as well as the option of baking a pie, and the former entails the latter. Now, suppose that I have both reason to bake a pie and reason to bake a pumpkin pie. This raises the question: Which, if either, is more fundamental than the other? Do I have reason to bake a pie because I have reason to (...)
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  33. added 2016-04-10
    Douglas W. Portmore, Maximalism Vs. Omnism About Permissibility.
    The performance of one option can entail the performance of another. For instance, I have the option of baking a pumpkin pie as well as the option of baking a pie, and the former entails the latter. Now, suppose that both of these options are permissible. This raises the issue of which, if either, is more fundamental than the other. Is baking a pie permissible because it’s permissible to perform some instance of pie-baking, such as pumpkin-pie baking? Or is baking (...)
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  34. added 2016-04-10
    Douglas W. Portmore, Transitivity, Moral Latitude, and Supererogation.
    On what I take to be the standard account of supererogation, an act is supererogatory if and only if it is morally optional and there is more moral reason to perform it than to perform some permissible alternative. And, on this account, an agent has more moral reason to perform one act than to perform another if and only if she morally ought to prefer how things would be if she were to perform the one to how things would be (...)
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  35. added 2016-04-10
    Robert J. Hartman (forthcoming). Against Luck-Free Moral Responsibility. Philosophical Studies:1-21.
    Every account of moral responsibility has conditions that distinguish between the consequences, actions, or traits that warrant praise or blame and those that do not. One intuitive condition is that praiseworthiness and blameworthiness cannot be affected by luck, that is, by factors beyond the agent’s control. Several philosophers build their accounts of moral responsibility on this luck-free condition, and we may call their views Luck-Free Moral Responsibility (LFMR). I offer moral and metaphysical arguments against LFMR. First, I maintain that considerations (...)
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  36. added 2016-04-10
    Tim Oakley (forthcoming). How to Release Oneself From an Obligation: Good News for Duties to Oneself. Australasian Journal of Philosophy:1-11.
    ABSTRACTIn some cases, you may release someone from some obligation they have to you. For instance, you may release them from a promise they made to you, or an obligation to repay money they have borrowed from you. But most take it as clear that, if you have an obligation to someone else, you cannot in any way release yourself from that obligation. I shall argue the contrary. The issue is important because one standard problem for the idea of having (...)
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  37. added 2016-04-10
    Jonathan Webber (2009). The Existentialism of Jean-Paul Sartre. Routledge.
    Webber argues for a new interpretation of Sartrean existentialism. On this reading, Sartre is arguing that each person’s character consists in the projects they choose to pursue and that we are all already aware of this but prefer not to face it. Careful consideration of his existentialist writings shows this to be the unifying theme of his theories of consciousness, freedom, the self, bad faith, personal relationships, existential psychoanalysis, and the possibility of authenticity. Developing this account affords many insights into (...)
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  38. added 2016-04-09
    Douglas W. Portmore, Uncertainty, Indeterminacy, and Agent-Centered Constraints.
    Commonsense morality includes various agent-centered constraints, including ones against killing unnecessarily, breaking a promise, and punishing the innocent. However, it’s not always clear whether, had an agent φ-ed, she would have violated a constraint. And sometimes the reason for this is not that we lack knowledge of the relevant facts, but that there is no fact about whether her φ-ing would have constituted a constraint-violation. What, then, is a constraint-accepting theory (i.e., a theory that accepts that there are such constraints) (...)
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  39. added 2016-04-09
    Veronica Alfano & Mark Alfano (forthcoming). Still Lives: The History and Philosophy of Mourning Texts. Routledge.
    “Call no one happy until they are dead.” “Never speak ill of the dead.” If we still heed the injunctions of Solon and Chilon of Sparta, then obituaries, which represent a prominent way of expressing the human universal of grief, are a resource for philosophical anthropology. Philosophers have emphasized that we can determine what counts as a virtue for a given type of person in a given cultural context by analyzing what people say about the dead (Zagzebski 1996, p. 135). (...)
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  40. added 2016-04-09
    Douglas W. Portmore (forthcoming). Maximalism and Moral Harmony. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
    Maximalism is the view that an agent is permitted to perform a certain type of action (say, baking) if and only if she is permitted to perform some instance of this type (say, baking a pie), where φ-ing is an instance of ψ-ing if and only if φ-ing entails ψ-ing but not vice versa. Now, the aim of this paper is not to defend maximalism, but to defend a certain account of our options that when combined with maximalism results in (...)
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  41. added 2016-04-09
    Douglas W. Portmore (2014). Commonsense Consequentialism: Wherein Morality Meets Rationality. OUP Usa.
    Commonsense Consequentialism is a book about morality, rationality, and the interconnections between the two. In it, Douglas W. Portmore defends a version of consequentialism that both comports with our commonsense moral intuitions and shares with other consequentialist theories the same compelling teleological conception of practical reasons.
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  42. added 2016-04-09
    Douglas Portmore (2008). Are Moral Reasons Morally Overriding? Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 11 (4):369-388.
    In this paper, I argue that those moral theorists who wish to accommodate agent-centered options and supererogatory acts must accept both that the reason an agent has to promote her own interests is a nonmoral reason and that this nonmoral reason can prevent the moral reason she has to sacrifice those interests for the sake of doing more to promote the interests of others from generating a moral requirement to do so. These theorists must, then, deny that moral reasons morally (...)
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  43. added 2016-04-08
    Zachary J. Goldberg (2016). The Inevitability of Evil and Moral Tragedy. In Claudio V. Zanini & Lima Bhuiyan (eds.), This Thing of Darkness: Shedding Light on Evil. Interdisciplinary Press 47-58.
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  44. added 2016-04-08
    Marcus Arvan (2016). Rightness as Fairness: A Moral and Political Theory. Palgrave MacMillan.
    This book argues that moral philosophy should be based on seven scientific principles of theory selection. It then argues that a new moral theory—Rightness as Fairness—satisfies those principles more successfully than existing theories. Chapter 1 explicates the seven principles of theory-selection, arguing that moral philosophy must conform them to be truth-apt. Chapter 2 argues those principles jointly support founding moral philosophy in known facts of empirical moral psychology: specifically, our capacities for mental time-travel and modal imagination. Chapter 2 then shows (...)
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  45. added 2016-04-08
    Zachary J. Goldberg (2016). Evil, "Evil", and Taking Responsibility. In Birgit Recki (ed.), Wozu ist das Böse gut? Mentis
    This essay will address the question for what good or purpose is evil. First, an examination of the use-mention distinction between evil and “evil” produces two distinct questions: what good is the presence of evil in the world, and what good is the concept of evil as part of our ethical vocabulary describing human interaction. By severing all logically necessary connections between evil and greater goods, we discover that the answer to the first question—what good is evil in the world—is (...)
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  46. added 2016-04-08
    Debra B. Bergoffen (2008). The Just War Tradition: Translating the Ethics of Human Dignity Into Political Practices. Hypatia 23 (2):72-94.
  47. added 2016-04-08
    Paul Benson (1990). Feminist Second Thoughts About Free Agency. Hypatia 5 (3):47-64.
  48. added 2016-04-04
    Rem B. Edwards, Identification Ethics and Spirituality.
    This article explores a form of ethics and spirituality based on the nearly universal but often undeveloped human capacity for identifying self with others and with non-personal values. It begins with commonplace non-moral identification experiences, then describes identification with others in ethical and spiritual unions. Freud’s psychological emphasis on identification is linked with ethics and spirituality, though Freud would have objected. Robert S. Hartman’s three kinds of goodness—systemic, extrinsic, and intrinsic—are applied to abundant ethical and spiritual living through identification. Intrinsic (...)
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  49. added 2016-04-04
    Taraneh Javanbakht (2016). Logique floue et arborescence comme outils de modélisation des catégories en tant que prototypes. Dissertation, Master's Thesis - University of Quebec in Montreal
    La présente recherche porte sur la notion de fluctuation de la catégorisation. Pour l’essentiel, ce travail présente la modélisation des catégories, comme outils cognitifs, selon les paramètres de la logique floue. Au premier chapitre, j’analyserai le problème de la catégorisation dans les sciences cognitives. Ma présentation portera, dans un premier temps, sur les notions de concept et de catégorisation. Ensuite, je présenterai la théorie des prototypes de Rosch. Le deuxième chapitre est consacré à traiter des débats autour de la théorie (...)
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  50. added 2016-04-04
    Scott Anderson (2009). Rationalizing Indirect Guilt. Vermont Law Review 33 (3):519-550.
1 — 50 / 174