David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jonathan Jenkins Ichikawa
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Journal of Scottish Philosophy 7 (2):177-192 (2009)
The name of Thomas Reid rarely appears in discussions of the history of moral thought. This is a pity, since Reid has a lot of interesting ideas that can contribute to the current discussions in meta-ethics. Reid can be understood as an ethical intuitionist. What makes his account especially interesting is the role affective states play in his intuitionist theory. Reid defends a cognitive theory of moral emotions. According to Reid, there are moral feelings that are the result of a moral judgment made by reason. The judgment and the feeling together constitute what Reid calls sentiments. Reid thinks that affective states (feelings and sentiments) play the role of helping reason to guide and control the egoistic feelings and passions. The affective states are particularly important, in Reid's view, because the motivating force of reason is often defeated by the stronger motivating force of the passions. So without affective states, we would often not be able to do what is morally good or right. In this paper, I will argue that the role of the affective states is still too limited in Reid's approach. He takes affective states to have a merely motivational function, namely, to help reason to control the passions and motivate to action where reason is too weak. Reid thinks that in making moral judgments we do not need to have feelings, feelings are at most a result of a judgment. Instead, I will argue that affective states also play an epistemological role
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
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
Michael Smith (1994). The Moral Problem. Blackwell.
Martha Craven Nussbaum (1990). Love's Knowledge: Essays on Philosophy and Literature. Oxford University Press.
Thomas Reid (2007). Essays on the Active Powers of the Human Mind. In Elizabeth Schmidt Radcliffe, Richard McCarty, Fritz Allhoff & Anand Vaidya (eds.), Revista Portuguesa de Filosofia. Blackwell Pub. Ltd. 297-368.
Lawrence Blum (1991). Moral Perception and Particularity. Ethics 101 (4):701-725.
Citations of this work BETA
Esther Kroeker (2011). Reid's Moral Psychology: Animal Motives as Guides to Virtue. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 41 (Supplement 1):122-141.
Similar books and articles
Rebecca Copenhaver (2007). Reid on Consciousness: Hop, Hot or For? Philosophical Quarterly 57 (229):613-634.
Xiangdong Xu (2011). Thomas Reid on Active Power and Free Agency. Frontiers of Philosophy in China 6 (3):369-389.
Charles Bailey (1980). Morality Reason and Feeling. Journal of Moral Education 9 (2):114-121.
Rebecca Copenhaver (2006). Thomas Reid's Philosophy of Mind: Consciousness and Intentionality. Philosophy Compass 1 (3):279-289.
Ferenc Huoranszki (2002). Common Sense and the Theory of Human Behaviour. Philosophical Quarterly 52 (209):526-543.
Terence Cuneo (2011). A Puzzle Regarding Reid's Theory of Motives. British Journal for the History of Philosophy 19 (5):963-981.
Sabine Roeser (2009). Thomas Reid's Moral Philosophy. In Reid on Ethics. Palgrave Macmillan
Nicholas Wolterstorff (2001). Thomas Reid and the Story of Epistemology. Cambridge University Press.
Terence Cuneo (2008). Intuitionism's Burden: Thomas Reid on the Problem of Moral Motivation. Journal of Scottish Philosophy 6 (1):21-44.
Added to index2010-07-11
Total downloads33 ( #127,908 of 1,934,702 )
Recent downloads (6 months)4 ( #145,851 of 1,934,702 )
How can I increase my downloads?