David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophical Studies 144 (2):261 - 280 (2009)
Breaking a promise is generally taken to involve committing a certain kind of moral wrong, but what (if anything) explains this wrong? According to one influential theory that has been championed most recently by T.M. Scanlon, the wrong involved in breaking a promise is a matter of violating an obligation that one incurs to a promisee in virtue of giving her assurance that one will perform or refrain from performing certain acts. In this paper, we argue that the “Assurance View”, as we call it, is susceptible to two kinds of counterexamples. The first show that giving assurance is not sufficient for incurring the kind of obligation of fulfillment that one violates in breaking a promise. The second show that giving assurance is not necessary. Having shown that the Assurance View fails in these ways, we then very briefly sketch the outline of what we take to be a better view—a view that we claim is not only attractive in its own right and that avoids the earlier counterexamples, but that also affords us a deeper explanation of why the Assurance View seems initially plausible, yet nonetheless turns out to be ultimately inadequate.
|Keywords||promises assurance promissory obligation Assurance View trust Trust View|
|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
Páll S. Árdal (1968). And That's a Promise. Philosophical Quarterly 18 (72):225-237.
Niko Kolodny & R. Jay Wallace (2003). Promises and Practices Revisited. Philosophy and Public Affairs 31 (2):119–154.
Neil MacCormick & Joseph Raz (1972). Voluntary Obligations and Normative Powers. Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 46:59 - 102.
Jan Narveson (1971). Promising, Expecting, and Utility. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 1 (2):207 - 233.
Michael G. Pratt (2003). Promises and Perlocutions. In Matt Matravers (ed.), Scanlon and Contractualism. Frank Cass. 93-119.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Michael Cholbi (2002). A Contractualist Account of Promising. Southern Journal of Philosophy 40 (4):475-91.
Peter Vallentyne (2006). “Natural Rights and Two Conceptions of Promising”. Chicago-Kent Law Review 81 (9):9-19.
Giacomo Manetti & Simone Toccafondi (2012). The Role of Stakeholders in Sustainability Reporting Assurance. Journal of Business Ethics 107 (3):363-377.
Nicole Dando & Tracey Swift (2003). Transparency and Assurance: Minding the Credibility Gap. Journal of Business Ethics 44 (2/3):195 - 200.
Edward Hinchman (2014). Assurance and Warrant. Philosophers' Imprint 14 (17).
Giacomo Manetti & Lucia Becatti (2009). Assurance Services for Sustainability Reports: Standards and Empirical Evidence. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 87 (1):289 - 298.
Hanoch Sheinman (2008). Promise as Practice Reason. Acta Analytica 23 (4):287-318.
Philip M. Nichols (2009). Multiple Communities and Controlling Corruption. Journal of Business Ethics 88 (4):805 - 813.
Daniel Friedrich & Nicholas Southwood (2011). Promises and Trust. In Hanoch Sheinman (ed.), Promises and Agreement: Philosophical Essays. Oxford University Press.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads78 ( #19,912 of 1,140,380 )
Recent downloads (6 months)11 ( #18,252 of 1,140,380 )
How can I increase my downloads?