David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Hypatia 28 (1):18-31 (2013)
This paper addresses Peter Singer's claim that cognitive ability can function as a universal criterion for measuring moral worth. I argue that Singer fails to adequately represent cognitive capacity as the object of moral knowledge at stake in his theory. He thus fails to put forth credible knowledge claims, which undermines both the trustworthiness of his moral theories and the morality of the actions called for by these theories. I situate Singer's methods within feminist critiques of moral reasoning and moral epistemology, and argue that Singer's methods are problematic for moral reasoning because they abstract from their object valuable contextual features. I further develop this claim by showing the importance of embodiment for the construal of objects of moral knowledge. Finally, I develop the moral and scholarly implications of this critique. By showing that the abstract, universal methods of reasoning Singer employs cannot credibly construe the objects of ethical inquiry, I call into question the validity of these methods as a means to moral knowledge in general. Furthermore, since moral reasoning takes place within an embodied moral landscape, it is itself a moral enterprise. Singer's moral reasoning, and ours, must be held accountable for its knowledge claims as well as its concrete effects in the world
|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
Seyla Benhabib (1992). Situating the Self: Gender, Community, and Postmodernism in Contemporary Ethics. Routledge.
Lorraine Code (1991). What Can She Know?: Feminist Theory and the Construction of Knowledge. Cornell University Press.
Eva Feder Kittay (2005). At the Margins of Moral Personhood. Ethics 116 (1):100-131.
Eva Feder Kittay (2009). The Personal is Philosophical is Political: A Philosopher and Mother of a Cognitively Disabled Person Sends Notes From the Battlefield. Metaphilosophy 40 (3-4):606-627.
Eva Feder Kittay, Carol Gilligan, Annette C. Baier, Michael Stocker, Christina H. Sommers, Kathryn Pyne Addelson, Virginia Held, Thomas E. Hill Jr, Seyla Benhabib, George Sher, Marilyn Friedman, Jonathan Adler, Sara Ruddick, Mary Fainsod, David D. Laitin, Lizbeth Hasse & Sandra Harding (1989). Women and Moral Theory. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Jack Temkin (1984). Singer, Moore, and the Metaphysics of Morals. Philosophy Research Archives 10:567-571.
Mark T. Nelson (1991). Intuitionism and Subjectivism. Metaphilosophy 22 (1-2):115-121.
Peter Singer (2004). One World: The Ethics of Globalization. Yale University Press.
Joakim Sandberg & Niklas Juth (2011). Ethics and Intuitions: A Reply to Singer. [REVIEW] Journal of Ethics 15 (3):209-226.
Gilbert Harman, Kelby Mason & Walter Sinnott-Armstrong (2010). Moral Reasoning. In John Michael Doris (ed.), The Moral Psychology Handbook. Oxford University Press.
Kelby Mason (2011). Moral Psychology And Moral Intuition: A Pox On All Your Houses. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 89 (3):441-458.
Andrew Sneddon (2007). A Social Model of Moral Dumbfounding: Implications for Studying Moral Reasoning and Moral Judgment. Philosophical Psychology 20 (6):731 – 748.
Marcus George Singer (2002). The Ideal of a Rational Morality: Philosophical Compositions. Oxford University Press.
William J. Prior (1987). Compassion. Philosophy and Theology 2 (2):173-191.
Stephen Cohen (2004). The Nature of Moral Reasoning: The Framework and Activities of Ethical Deliberation, Argument, and Decision-Making. Oxford University Press.
Joseph M. Paxton & Joshua D. Greene (2010). Moral Reasoning: Hints and Allegations. Topics in Cognitive Science 2 (3):511-527.
Avner Baz (2008). Being Right, and Being in the Right. Inquiry 51 (6):627 – 644.
Meredith Williams (1980). Rights, Interests, and Moral Equality. Environmental Ethics 2 (2):149-161.
M. S. Singer & A. E. Singer (1997). Observer Judgements About Moral Agents' Ethical Decisions: The Role of Scope of Justice and Moral Intensity. Journal of Business Ethics 16 (5):473 - 484.
Cordelia Fine (2006). Is the Emotional Dog Wagging its Rational Tail, or Chasing It? Philosophical Explorations 9 (1):83 – 98.
Added to index2011-11-04
Total downloads45 ( #37,942 of 1,102,964 )
Recent downloads (6 months)12 ( #16,297 of 1,102,964 )
How can I increase my downloads?