Journal of Ethics 13 (2-3):257 - 289 (2009)
|Abstract||The Milgram and other situationist experiments support the real-life evidence that most of us are highly akratic and heteronomous, and that Aristototelian virtue is not global. Indeed, like global theoretical knowledge, global virtue is psychologically impossible because it requires too much of finite human beings with finite powers in a finite life; virtue can only be domain-specific. But unlike local, situation-specific virtues, domain-specific virtues entail some general understanding of what matters in life, and are connected conceptually and causally to our traits in other domains. The experiments also make us aware of how easily unobtrusive situational factors can tap our susceptibilities to obedience, conformity, irresponsibility, cruelty, or indifference to others’ welfare, thereby empowering us to change ourselves for the better. Thus, they advance the Socratic project of living the examined life. I note a remarkable parallel between the results of the baseline Milgram experiments and the results of the learned helplessness experiments by Martin Seligman et al. This provides fresh insight into the psychology and character of the obedient Milgram subjects, and I use this insight to argue that pusillanimity, as Aristotle conceives of it, is part of a complete explanation of the behavior of the obedient Milgram subjects.|
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Through your library||Configure|
Similar books and articles
Jonathan Webber (2006). Virtue, Character and Situation. Journal of Moral Philosophy 3 (2):193-213.
John Sabini & Maury Silver (1983). Dispositional Vs. Situational Interpretations of Milgram's Obedience Experiments: "The Fundamental Attributional Error". Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 13 (2):147–154.
Candace L. Upton (2009). Situational Traits of Character: Dispositional Foundations and Implications for Moral Psychology and Friendship. Lexington Books.
Emma Cave & Søren Holm (2003). Milgram and TuskegeeâParadigm Research Projects in Bioethics. Health Care Analysis 11 (1):27-40.
Gilbert Harman (2003). No Character or Personality. Business Ethics Quarterly 13 (1):87-94.
Christian Miller (2009). Empathy, Social Psychology, and Global Helping Traits. Philosophical Studies 142 (2):247 - 275.
Miguel Pina E. Cunha, Arménio Rego & Stewart R. Clegg (forthcoming). Obedience and Evil: From Milgram and Kampuchea to Normal Organizations. Journal of Business Ethics.
Gopal Sreenivasan (2008). Character and Consistency: Still More Errors. Mind 117 (467):603-612.
Dan McArthur (2009). Good Ethics Can Sometimes Mean Better Science: Research Ethics and the Milgram Experiments. Science and Engineering Ethics 15 (1).
Deborah C. Zeller (2007). Virtue, Virtue Skepticism, and the Milgram Studies. Philosophy in the Contemporary World 14 (2):50-59.
Added to index2009-06-10
Total downloads131 ( #3,486 of 549,122 )
Recent downloads (6 months)7 ( #10,383 of 549,122 )
How can I increase my downloads?