What Is Modesty?

Abstract
This paper examines the virtue of modesty and provides an account of what it means to be modest. A good account should not only delimit the proper application of the concept, but should also capture why it is that we think that modesty is a virtue. Recent work has yielded several interesting, but flawed, accounts of modesty. Julia Driver has argued that it consists in underestimating one’s self-worth, while Owen Flanagan has argued that modesty must entail an accurate—as opposed to underestimated or inflated—conception of one’s self worth. Neither of these accounts provides a satisfactory characterization of modesty as a virtue. Driver leaves us wondering why modesty, understood, at least in part, as misunderstanding one’s merits, should earn the status of virtue, whereas Flanagan’s characterization does not adequately and uniquely pick out the concept of modesty. These criticisms have been presented by G. F. Schueler who goes on to defend the doctrine that modesty is, roughly, the lack of one’s desire for other people to be impressed by one’s accomplishments. My goal is to provide an account of modesty that improves upon those currently before us. My own positive account will draw off of Schueler’s account as well as work done by Jean-Paul Sartre and Gabriele Taylor on the moral emotion of shame
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 11,793
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Similar books and articles
Jason Brennan (2007). Modesty Without Illusion. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 75 (3):111-128.
Jason Brennan (2007). Modesty Without Illusion. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 75 (1):111–128.
Jason Brennan (2007). Modesty Without Illusion. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 75 (1):111-128.
Ronald Sandler (2005). Ignorance and Virtue. Philosophical Papers 34 (2):261-272.
Saul Smilansky (2003). Free Will and the Mystery of Modesty. American Philosophical Quarterly 40 (2):105-118.
G. Alex Sinha (2012). Modernizing the Virtue of Humility. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 90 (2):259-274.
Julia Driver (2001). Uneasy Virtue. Cambridge University Press.
Albert Camus (2001). Democracy is an Exercise in Modesty. Sartre Studies International 7 (2):12-14.
Analytics

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2011-01-09

Total downloads

15 ( #112,097 of 1,099,696 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

5 ( #64,880 of 1,099,696 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Start a new thread
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.