The role of emotions in mental life is the subject of longstanding controversy, spanning the history of ethics, moral psychology, and educational theory. This paper defends an account of love’s cognitive power. My starting point is Plato’s dialogue, the Symposium, in which we find the surprising claim that love aims at engendering moral virtue. I argue that this understanding affords love a crucial place in educational curricula, as engaging the emotions can motivate both cognitive achievement and moral development. I first (...) outline the state of the challenge between dominant rival theories regarding emotions in learning. Next, I demonstrate how Platonic virtue ethics offers the most tenable prospect for an education of reason and emotion. Third, I sketch three practical ways educators might constructively engage emotions in the classroom. I conclude that love’s virtue is its peerless power to motivate the creative and lateral thinking which leads to moral development. (shrink)
Many aestheticians and ethicists are interested in the similarities and connections between aesthetics and ethics (Nussbaum 1990; Foot 2002; Gaut 2007). One way in which some have suggested the two domains are different is that in ethics there exist obligations while in aesthetics there do not (Hampshire 1954). However, Marcia Muelder Eaton has argued that there is good reason to think that aesthetic obligations do exist (Eaton 2008). We will explore the nature of these obligations by asking whether acts of (...) aesthetic supererogation (acts that go beyond the call of our aesthetic obligations) are possible. In this paper, we defend the thesis that there is good reason to think such acts exist. (shrink)
This paper defends two claims. First, we will argue for the existence of aesthetic demands in the realm of everyday aesthetics, and that these demands are not reducible to moral demands. Second, we will argue that we must recognise the limits of these demands in order to combat a widespread form of gendered oppression. The concept of aesthetic supererogation offers a new structural framework to understand both the pernicious nature of this oppression and what may be done to mitigate it.
This paper defends an account of how erotic love works to develop virtue. It is argued that love drives moral development by holding the creation of virtue in the individual as the emotion’s intentional object. After analyzing the distinction between passive and active ac- counts of the object of love, this paper demonstrates that a Platonic virtue-ethical understanding of erotic love—far from being consumed with ascetic contemplation—offers a positive treatment of emotion’s role in the attainment and social practice of virtue.
In his dialogues, Plato presents different ways in which to understand the relation between Forms and particulars. In the Symposium, we are presented with yet another, hitherto unidentified Form-particular relation: the relation is Love, which binds together Form and particular in a generative manner, fulfilling all the metaphysical requirements of the individual’s qualification by participation. Love in relation to the beautiful motivates human action to desire for knowledge of the Form, resulting in the lover actively cultivating and bringing into being (...) new beauty in the world, and in herself. Chapters 1 and 2 of this thesis offer a survey of the arguments and examples Plato puts forward in the text of the corpus regarding the nature of Forms and the nature of participation, alongside a framework of the traditional interpretations of these two Platonic concepts in the literature. Chapter 3 turns to a close examination of Erôs in the Symposium, arguing that the love Plato presents in this dialogue is of a different sort than appetitive emotion. It is an aesthetic and intellectual attraction, capable of stimulating cognitive achievement. Erôs, however, does not stop there. The lover is led not only to contemplation of beauty, but to the generation of beauty, which is the subject of Chapter 4. The emotive-turn-to-cognitive relation of Erôs, I argue, is the clearest picture Plato paints of how possession of properties can be explained through participation in Forms. Erôs leads the lover to produce beauty in the world and in the soul, which explains how love in relation to the beautiful can lead to becoming beautiful. The object of love is the generation of beauty, the mortal mechanism of participation in the Form by which the lover herself becomes beautiful. Finally, Chapter 5 focusses on beauty itself and its role in moral education. Beauty, for Plato, is required for creative generation and can be understood as a uniquely powerful virtue of soul. (shrink)
On this episode of The Owl, LaurenWare sits down with host Ian Olasov to talk about how fear and other emotions shape our understanding of risk, about what fear is and when it's rational, and about why Halloween is a thing.
The medical intervention of ‘twilight sleep’, or the use of a scopolamine–morphine mixture to anaesthetise labouring women, caused a furore among doctors and early 20th-century feminists. Suffragists and women’s rights advocates led the Twilight Sleep Association in a quest to encourage doctors and their female patients to widely embrace the practice. Activists felt the method revolutionised the notoriously dangerous and painful childbirth process for women, touting its benefits as the key to allowing women to control their birth experience at a (...) time when the maternal mortality rate remained high despite medical advances in obstetrics. Yet many physicians attacked the practice as dangerous for patients and their babies and antithetical to the expectations for proper womanhood and motherly duty. Historians of women’s health have rightly cited Twilight Sleep as the beginning of the medicalisation and depersonalisation of the childbirth process in the 20th century. This article instead repositions the feminist political arguments for the method as an important precursor for the rhetoric of the early birth control movement, led by Mary Ware Dennett and Margaret Sanger. Both Twilight Sleep and the birth control movement represent a distinct moment in the early 20th century wherein pain was deeply connected to politics and the rhetoric of equal rights. The two reformers emphasised in their publications and appeals to the public the vast social significance of reproductive pain—both physical and psychological. They contended that women’s lack of control over both pregnancy and birth represented the greatest hindrance to women’s fulfilment of their political rights and a danger to the healthy development of larger society. In their arguments for legal contraception, Dennett and Sanger placed women’s pain front and centre as the primary reason for changing a law that hindered women’s full participation in the public order. (shrink)
Every corporation has an internal decision structure which he terms the CID structure that represents "the personal organization for the exercise of the corporation's power with respect to its ventures.".
This paper examines the distinction between self-love and self-conceit in Kant's moral psychology. It motivates an alternative account of the origin of self-conceit by drawing a parallel to what Kant calls transcendental illusion.
Despite Kant’s lasting influence on philosophical accounts of moral motivation, many details of his own position remain elusive. In the Critique of Practical Reason, for example, Kant argues that our recognition of the moral law’s authority must elicit both painful and pleasurable feelings in us. On reflection, however, it is unclear how these effects could motivate us to act from duty. As a result, Kant’s theory of moral sensibility comes under a skeptical threat: the possibility of a morally motivating feeling (...) seems incoherent. My aim in this paper is to reconstruct Kant’s theory in a way that overcomes this threat. By way of conclusion, I show how my reconstruction brings a new perspective to a long-standing dispute over intellectualist and affectivist views of moral motivation. (shrink)
Kant’s doctrine of the Fact of Reason is one of the most perplexing aspects of his moral philosophy. The aim of this paper is to defend Kant’s doctrine from the common charge of dogmatism. My defense turns on a previously unexplored analogy to the notion of ‘matters of fact’ popularized by members of the Royal Society in the seventeenth century. In their work, ‘facts’ were beyond doubt, often referring to experimental effects one could witness first hand. While Kant uses the (...) German equivalent in different contexts, I argue that the scientific analogy opens up a new framework for interpreting his strategy of justification in the Critique of Practical Reason. In the final section, I address a few possible objections to my reading, one of which I anticipate coming from Dieter Henrich and Ian Proops, who have argued that Kant’s Fact of Reason is best understood under a legal analogy. (shrink)
Kant’s effort to defend the co-existence of transcendental freedom and natural necessity is one of the crowning achievements of the first Critique. Yet by identifying the will with practical reason in his moral philosophy, he lent support to the view that the moral law is the causal law of a free will – the result of which, as Reinhold argued, left immoral action impossible. However, Reinhold’s attempt to separate the will from practical reason generated difficulties of its own, which Maimon (...) was quick to point out. By identifying freedom with indifferent choice, Maimon argued, Reinhold had no resources to explain why a free will acts at all. My aim in this article is to show how Fichte’s theory of freedom seeks to reconcile these two commitments: the key lies in what I call Fichte’s Genetic Model, according to which indifferent choice is the original condition of the will, but a condition we must actively overcome. (shrink)
It is commonly held that Kant ventured to derive morality from freedom in Groundwork III. It is also believed that he reversed this strategy in the second Critique, attempting to derive freedom from morality instead. In this paper, I set out to challenge these familiar assumptions: Kant’s argument in Groundwork III rests on a moral conception of the intelligible world, one that plays a similar role as the ‘fact of reason’ in the second Critique. Accordingly, I argue, there is no (...) reversal in the proof-structure of Kant’s two works. (shrink)
In this paper, I identify a form of epistemic insensitivity that occurs when someone fails to make proper use of the epistemic tools at their disposal in order to bring their beliefs in line with epistemically relevant evidence that is available to them. I call this kind of insensitivity agential insensitivity because it stems from the epistemic behavior of an individual agent. Agential insensitivity can manifest as a failure to either attend to relevant and available evidence, or appropriately interpret evidence (...) that is attended to. The concept of agential insensitivity allows us to conceptualize the kind of not-knowing involved in forms of ignorance that are cultivated and maintained by individual agents, especially when this ignorance is enabled or encouraged by social structures. I use the skepticism about racial disparities in policing practices that is displayed by many white Americans as a lens for exploring this connection. Understanding agential insensitivity thus provides insight into both social and epistemic phenomena. (shrink)
Kant is well known for claiming that we can never really know our true moral disposition. He is less well known for claiming that the injunction "Know Yourself" is the basis of all self-regarding duties. Taken together, these two claims seem contradictory. My aim in this paper is to show how they can be reconciled. I first address the question of whether the duty of self-knowledge is logically coherent (§1). I then examine some of the practical problems surrounding the duty, (...) notably, self-deception (§2). Finding none of Kant's solutions to the problem of self-deception satisfactory, I conclude by defending a Kantian account of self-knowledge based on his theory of conscience (§3). (shrink)
Kaplan and Craver claim that all explanations in neuroscience appeal to mechanisms. They extend this view to the use of mathematical models in neuroscience and propose a constraint such models must meet in order to be explanatory. I analyze a mathematical model used to provide explanations in dynamical systems neuroscience and indicate how this explanation cannot be accommodated by the mechanist framework. I argue that this explanation is well characterized by Batterman’s account of minimal model explanations and that it demonstrates (...) how relationships between explanatory models in neuroscience and the systems they represent is more complex than has been appreciated. (shrink)
In the last two decades few topics in philosophy of science have received as much attention as mechanistic explanation. A significant motivation for these accounts is that scientists frequently use the term “mechanism” in their explanations of biological phenomena. While scientists appeal to a variety of causal concepts in their explanations, many philosophers argue or assume that all of these concepts are well understood with the single notion of mechanism. This reveals a significant problem with mainstream mechanistic accounts– although philosophers (...) use the term “mechanism” interchangeably with other causal concepts, this is not something that scientists always do. This paper analyses two causal concepts in biology–the notions of “mechanism” and “pathway”–and how they figure in biological explanation. I argue that these concepts have unique features, that they are associated with distinct strategies of causal investigation, and that they figure in importantly different types of explanation. (shrink)
While there is now considerable anxiety about whether the psychological theory presupposed by virtue ethics is empirically sustainable, analogous issues have received little attention in the virtue epistemology literature. This paper argues that virtue epistemology encounters challenges reminiscent of those recently encountered by virtue ethics: just as seemingly trivial variation in context provokes unsettling variation in patterns of moral behavior, trivial variation in context elicits unsettling variation in patterns of cognitive functioning. Insofar as reliability is a condition on epistemic virtue, (...) we have reason to doubt that human beings possess the cognitive materials required for epistemic virtue, and thereby reason to think that virtue epistemology is threatened by skepticism. We conclude that while virtue epistemology has resources for addressing this challenge, exploiting these resources forces tradeoffs between empirical and normative adequacy. (shrink)
According to grounded cognition, words whose semantics contain sensory-motor features activate sensory-motor simulations, which, in turn, interact with spatial responses to produce grounded congruency effects. Growing evidence shows these congruency effects do not always occur, suggesting instead that the grounded features in a word's meaning do not become active automatically across contexts. Researchers sometimes use this as evidence that concepts are not grounded, further concluding that grounded information is peripheral to the amodal cores of concepts. We first review broad evidence (...) that words do not have conceptual cores, and that even the most salient features in a word's meaning are not activated automatically. Then, in three experiments, we provide further evidence that grounded congruency effects rely dynamically on context, with the central grounded features in a concept becoming active only when the current context makes them salient. Even when grounded features are central to a word's meaning, their activation depends on task conditions. (shrink)
ABSTRACTWhile Kant’s claim that the moral law discloses our freedom to us has been extensively discussed in recent decades, the reactions to this claim among Kant’s immediate successors have gone largely overlooked by scholars. Reinhold, Creuzer, and Maimon were among three prominent thinkers of the era unwilling to follow Kant in making the moral law the condition for knowing our freedom. Maimon went so far as to reject Kant’s method of appealing to our everyday awareness of duty on the grounds (...) that common human understanding is susceptible to error and illusion. In this paper I shall examine how these skeptical reactions to Kant’s position shaped the background for Fichte’s method of moral justification, leading up to his own deduction of the moral law in the System of Ethics. By way of conclusion, I shall propose a new interpretation of how consciousness of the moral law serves as an entry-point to Fichte’s form of idealism. (shrink)
It is often assumed that Fichte's aim in Part I of the System of Ethics is to provide a deduction of the moral law, the very thing that Kant – after years of unsuccessful attempts – deemed impossible. On this familiar reading, what Kant eventually viewed as an underivable 'fact' (Factum), the authority of the moral law, is what Fichte traces to its highest ground in what he calls the principle of the 'I'. However, scholars have largely overlooked a passage (...) in the System of Ethics where Fichte explicitly invokes Kant's doctrine of the fact of reason with approval, claiming that consciousness of the moral law grounds our belief in freedom (GA I/5:65). On the reading I defend, Fichte's invocation of the Factum is consistent with the structure of Part I when we distinguish (a) the feeling of moral compulsion from (b) the moral law itself. (shrink)
In this article I offer a critical commentary on Jeanine Grenberg’s claim that, by the time of the second Critique, Kant was committed to the view that we only access the moral law’s validity through the feeling of respect. The issue turns on how we understand Kant’s assertion that our consciousness of the moral law is a ‘fact of reason’. Grenberg argues that all facts must be forced, and anything forced must be felt. I defend an alternative interpretation, according to (...) which the fact of reason refers to the actuality of our moral consciousness. (shrink)
There is no question that Fichte's theory of conscience is central to his system of ethics. Yet his descriptions of its role in practical deliberation appear inconsistent, if not contradictory. Many scholars have claimed that for Fichte conscience plays a material role by providing the content of our moral obligations—the Material Function View. Some have denied this, however, claiming that conscience only plays a formal role by testing our moral convictions in any given case—the Formal Function View. My aim in (...) this paper is to offer a new contribution to this debate. I begin by supplying further evidence in support of the view that conscience only plays a formal function in Fichte's ethics. Then I call attention to a deeper problem this view faces, namely, that it invites an infinite regress by making one's conviction a matter of higher-order reflection. The key to overcoming this threat, I argue, lies in Fichte's doctrine of feeling, whereby the criterion of one's conviction lies, not in a cognitive state, but in an affective state. In closing, I discuss the relevance of Fichte's theory for current debates over the nature of moral error and moral deference. (shrink)
The concept of respect for persons is often rejected as a basis for understanding forgiveness. As many have argued, to hold your offender responsible for her actions is to respect her as a person; but this kind of respect is more likely to sustain, rather than dissolve, your resentment toward her (Garrard & McNaughton 2003; 2011; Allais 2008). I seek to defend an alternative view in this paper. To forgive, on my account, involves ceasing to identify your offender with her (...) wrongdoing, and this requires a corresponding affective change on your behalf. While there are different ways this may happen, I argue that respect for your offender as a person can play a significant role in the process. (shrink)
Slurring language has had a lot of recent interest, but the focus has been almost exclusively on racial slurs. Gendered pejoratives, on the other hand—terms like “slut,” “bitch,” or “sissy”—do not fit into existing accounts of slurring terms, as these accounts require the existence of neutral correlates, which, I argue, these gendered pejoratives lack. Rather than showing that these terms are not slurs, I argue that this challenges the assumption that slurs must have neutral correlates, and so that a new (...) approach to thinking about the meaning of slurring terms is required. (shrink)
This paper offers a new interpretation of Kant's relationship with skepticism in the Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals. My position differs from commonly held views in the literature in two ways. On the one hand, I argue that Kant's relationship with skepticism is active and systematic (contrary to Hill, Wood, Rawls, Timmermann, and Allison). On the other hand, I argue that the kind of skepticism Kant is interested in does not speak to the philosophical tradition in any straightforward sense (...) (contrary to Forster and Guyer). On my reading, Kant takes up a skeptical method in the Groundwork as a way of exposing certain obstacles in our ordinary and philosophical thinking about morality. The central obstacle he is interested in is practical in character, arising from a natural tendency we have to rationalize against the moral law. In attempting to resolve this tendency, I argue, the Groundwork turns out to have a profoundly educative task. (shrink)
Damon Tweedy is a psychiatrist, lawyer, and writer. He's also Black. While in his first year as a medical student at Duke University, one of his professors approached him in the classroom and asked why the light bulb in the room hadn't been changed, as requested. Tweedy realized that his professor assumed he was a maintenance worker, not a student. Tweedy never took up this incident with the professor, nor did the professor ever apologize. Tweedy recounts that his best "revenge" (...) would be to excel in the class, which he ultimately did. At the end of the semester, upon learning that Tweedy received the second highest grade of over one hundred students, this professor invited him to work as a research assistant in his... (shrink)
The idea that introspection is transparent—that we know our minds by looking out to the world, not inwards towards some mental item—seems quite appealing when we think about belief. It seems that we know our beliefs by attending to their content; I know that I believe there is a café nearby by thinking about the streets near me, and not by thinking directly about my mind. Such an account is thought to have several advantages—for example, it is thought to avoid (...) the need to posit any extra mental faculties peculiar to introspection. In this paper I discuss recent attempts to extend this kind of outwards-looking account to our introspective knowledge of desire. According to these accounts, we know our desires by attending to what in the world we judge to be valuable. This, however, does not deal satisfactorily with cases where my value judgments and introspective knowledge of my desires come apart. I propose a better alternative for the proponent of transparency, but one that requires giving up on the supposed metaphysical advantages. (shrink)
We argue that Koch’s postulates are best understood within an interventionist account of causation, in the sense described in Woodward. We show how this treatment helps to resolve interpretive puzzles associated with Koch’s work and how it clarifies the different roles the postulates play in providing useful, yet not universal criteria for disease causation. Our paper is an effort at rational reconstruction; we attempt to show how Koch’s postulates and reasoning make sense and are normatively justified within an interventionist framework (...) and more difficult to understand within alternative frameworks for thinking about causation. (shrink)
Dispositional ascriptions do not entail the counterfactuals we might expect, as interfering factors may be poised to prevent the disposition from manifesting in its very stimulus conditions. Such factors are commonly called finks and masks. It is thought, however, that finks and masks cannot be intrinsic to the disposition bearer; if an intrinsic property of the object would prevent a particular response in certain conditions, the object fails to have the corresponding disposition. I argue that we should accept intrinsic finks (...) and masks if we think there are finks and masks at all, and also if we maintain that paradigmatic dispositions are intrinsic. This last point is particularly problematic for the claim that there cannot be intrinsic finks and masks, for if paradigmatic dispositions are not intrinsic then the central argument for the impossibility of intrinsic finks and masks is undermined. (shrink)
At the core of the sense of agency for self-produced action is the sense that I, and not some other agent, am producing and directing those actions. While there is an ever-expanding body of empirical research investigating the sense of agency for bodily action, there has, to date, been little empirical investigation of the sense of agency for thought. The present study uses the novel Mind-to-Mind paradigm, in which the agentive source of a target thought is ambiguous, to measure misattributions (...) of agency. Seventy-two percent of participants made at least one misattribution of agency during a 5-min trial. Misattributions were significantly more frequent when the target thought was an arousing negative thought as compared to a neutral control. The findings establish a novel protocol for measuring the sense of agency for thought, and suggest that both contextual factors and emotional experience play a role in its generation. (shrink)
ABSTRACT:Corporate social responsibility has been hailed as a new means to address gender inequality, particularly by facilitating women’s empowerment. Women are frequently and forcefully positioned as saviours of economies or communities and proponents of sustainability. Using vignettes drawn from a CSR women’s empowerment programme in Ghana, this conceptual article explores unexpected programme outcomes enacted by women managers and farmers. It is argued that a feminist Foucauldian reading of power as relational and productive can help explain this since those involved are (...) engaged in ongoing processes of resistance and self-making. This raises questions about the assumptions made about women and what is it that such CSR programmes aim to empower them ‘from’ or ‘to.’ Empowerment, when viewed as an ethic of care for the self, is better understood as a self-directed process, rather than a corporate-led strategy. This has implications for how we can imagine the achievement of gender equality through CSR. (shrink)
Although case-based training is popular for ethics education, little is known about how specific case content influences training effectiveness. Therefore, the effects of (a) codes of ethical conduct and (b) forecasting content were investigated. Results revealed richer cases, including both codes and forecasting content, led to increased knowledge acquisition, greater sensemaking strategy use, and better decision ethicality. With richer cases, a specific pattern emerged. Specifically, content describing codes alone was more effective when combined with short-term forecasts, whereas content embedding codes (...) within context was more effective when combined with long-term forecasts, leading to greater knowledge acquisition and sensemaking strategy use. (shrink)
In ‘Affectivity in Heidegger I: Moods and Emotions in Being and Time’, we explicated the crucial role that Martin Heidegger assigns to our capacity to affectively find ourselves in the world. There, our discussion was restricted to Division I of Being and Time. Specifically, we discussed how Befindlichkeit as a basic existential and moods as the ontic counterparts of Befindlichkeit make circumspective engagement with the world possible. Indeed, according to Heidegger, it is primarily through moods that the world is ‘opened (...) up’ and revealed to us as a world that is suffused with values and entities that already matter to us. In this companion essay, our aim is to expand our analysis of affectivity in the following ways: first, we revisit our discussion of Befindlichkeit in light of Heidegger's discussion of temporality in Division II of BT; second, we discuss the basic or fundamental mood of boredom and its ontological significance; we conclude by providing a brief characterization of how Heidegger's notion of mood changes in his later thinking. (shrink)
Causal selection has to do with the distinction we make between background conditions and “the” true cause or causes of some outcome of interest. A longstanding consensus in philosophy views causal selection as lacking any objective rationale and as guided, instead, by arbitrary, pragmatic, and non-scientific considerations. I argue against this position in the context of causal selection for disease traits. In this domain, causes are selected on the basis of the type of causal control they exhibit over a disease (...) of interest. My analysis clarifies the principled rationale that guides this selection and how it involves both pragmatic and objective considerations, which have been overlooked in the extant literature. (shrink)
Martin Heidegger's account of attunement [Befindlichkeit] through mood [Stimmung] is unprecedented in the history of philosophy and groundbreaking vis-à-vis contemporary accounts of emotion. On his view, moods are not mere mental states that result from, arise out of, or are caused by our situation or context. Rather, moods are fundamental modes of existence that are disclosive of the way one is or finds oneself [sich befinden] in the world. Mood is one of the basic modes through which we experience the (...) world and through which the world is made present to us. Moreover, moods are the lenses through which things, people, animals, events, and aspects in the world matter to us. In this paper, I make the case that Heidegger's insights with respect to mood can and ought to be extended beyond the narrow scope of his fundamental ontology in which they were developed. I argue that contemporary accounts of mood within psychology ought to take these Heideggerian insights seriously and use them when defining, studying, evaluating, and drawing conclusions about the nature of moods. There are three sections to my paper. In section 1, I delineate Heidegger's account of mood. In section 2, I turn to some key studies on mood in psychology, and I elaborate upon some of the main shortcomings in this literature. In section 3, I suggest how psychology might benefit from understanding and utilizing a Heideggerian-inspired phenomenology of mood. (shrink)
This book draws on the hermeneutics of Hans-Georg Gadamer to inform a feminist perspective of social identities. Lauren Swayne Barthold moves beyond answers that either defend the objective nature of identities or dismiss their significance altogether. Building on the work of both hermeneutic and non-hermeneutic feminist theorists of identity, she asserts the relevance of concepts like horizon, coherence, dialogue, play, application, and festival for developing a theory of identity. This volume argues that as intersubjective interpretations, social identities are vital (...) ways of fostering meaning and connection with others. Barthold also demonstrates how a hermeneutic approach to social identities can provide critiques of and resistance to identity-based oppression. (shrink)
In this article, we analyse the novel case of Phoenix, a non-binary adult requesting ongoing puberty suppression to permanently prevent the development of secondary sex characteristics, as a way of affirming their gender identity. We argue that the aim of OPS is consistent with the proper goals of medicine to promote well-being, and therefore could ethically be offered to non-binary adults in principle; there are additional equity-based reasons to offer OPS to non-binary adults as a group; and the ethical defensibility (...) of facilitating individual requests for OPS from non-binary adults also depends on other relevant considerations, including the balance of potential benefits over harms for that specific patient, and whether the patient’s request is substantially autonomous. Although the broadly principlist ethical approach we take can be used to analyse other cases of non-binary adults requesting OPS apart from the case we evaluate, we highlight that the outcome will necessarily depend on the individual’s context and values. However, such clinical provision of OPS should ideally be within the context of a properly designed research study with long-term follow-up and open publication of results. (shrink)
There seems to be some kind of close relationship between desires and behavioral dispositions. While a popular view about the nature of desire is that it essentially involves dispositions towards action, there do seem to be pressing objections to this view. However, recent work on dispositional properties potentially undermines some of the metaphysical assumptions that lie beneath these objections.
Abstract: In recent work Stephen Darwall has attacked what he calls J. G. Fichte's ‘voluntarist’ thesis, the idea—on Darwall's reading—that I am bound by obligations of respect to another person by virtue of my choice to interact with him. Darwall argues that voluntary choice is incompatible with the normative force behind the concept of a person, which demands my respect non-voluntarily. He in turn defends a ‘presuppositional’ thesis which claims that I am bound by obligations of respect simply by recognizing (...) the other as a person. In this paper I argue Darwall has misidentified the voluntary element in Fichte's account (sections 4–5). This requires me first to explain what Fichte's voluntarism really consists in (sections 1–3), and I suggest an apparent ambiguity in Fichte's position is responsible for Darwall's misreading. Clarifying this ambiguity, however, exposes some limitations to Darwall's thesis, and I end by discussing what those limitations are and what we can learn from them (sections 6–8). (shrink)
A review of the stakeholder literature reveals that the concept of "normative core" can be applied in three main ways: philosophical justification of stakeholder theory, theoretical governing principles of a firm, and managerial beliefs/values influencing the underlying narrative of business. When considering the case of Wall Street, we argue that the managerial application of normative core reveals the imbedded nature of the fact/value dichotomy. Problems arise when the work of the fact/value dichotomy contributes to a closed-core institution. We make the (...) distinction between open- and closed-core institutions to show how in the case of the closed-core, ethical decision-making is viewed by the institution as a separate domain from the core business of the institution. The resulting blind spot stifles meaningful exchanges with stakeholders attempting to address the need for reform. We suggest in conclusion that ethical considerations are less about casting a value judgment and more about creating a process for meaningful conversation throughout an institution and its stakeholders. (shrink)