An aristotelian approach to cognitive enhancement

Journal of Value Inquiry 44 (3):365–375 (2010)
Abstract
In this paper, I argue that cognitive enhancement cannot be epistemically beneficial since getting things right in particular and epistemic agency in general both presuppose a kind of achievement. Drawing on Aristotle’s ethics, I distinguish four categories of actions: caused, attributable, responsible, and creditable. I conclude that to the extent that cognitive enhancement is incompatible with the latter category it undermines rather than strengthens autonomous agency in the realm of cognition.
Keywords epistemic agency  creditable vs. broadly responsible actions  cognitive enhancement  Aristotle  virtue epistemology
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