21 found

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  1.  29
    John Stuart Mill's Harm Principle and Free Speech: Expanding the Notion of Harm.Melina Constantine Bell - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (2):162-179.
    This article advocates employing John Stuart Mill's harm principle to set the boundary for unregulated free speech, and his Greatest Happiness Principle to regulate speech outside that boundary because it threatens unconsented-to harm. Supplementing the harm principle with an offense principle is unnecessary and undesirable if our conception of harm integrates recent empirical evidence unavailable to Mill. For example, current research uncovers the tangible harms individuals suffer directly from bigoted speech, as well as the indirect harms generated by the systemic (...)
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  2.  3
    Maria Dimova-Cookson, Rethinking Positive and Negative Liberty (London and New York: Routledge Taylor & Francis Group, 2020), Pp. Xvii + 251. [REVIEW]Gary Browning - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (2):249-251.
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  3.  31
    How to (Consistently) Reject the Options Argument.Stephen M. Campbell, Joseph A. Stramondo & David Wasserman - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (2):237-245.
    It is commonly thought that disability is a harm or “bad difference” because having a disability restricts valuable options in life. In his recent essay “Disability, Options and Well-Being,” Thomas Crawley offers a novel defense of this style of reasoning and argues that we and like-minded critics of this brand of argument are guilty of an inconsistency. Our aim in this article is to explain why our view avoids inconsistency, to challenge Crawley's positive defense of the Options Argument, and to (...)
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  4.  8
    J. S. Mill on Artistic Freedom and Censorship.Rafael Cejudo - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (2):180-192.
    This article aims to reconstruct a Millian argument for protecting a broad artistic freedom, as well as to delineate the exceptional cases in which censorship of works of art might be justified. Mill's On Liberty offers two lines of reasoning that might be used to defend the widest possible artistic freedom. The first is Mill's defense of freedom of speech in chapter 2, although this would apparently still allow for censoring art that serves to instigate harm. The second is his (...)
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  5.  8
    Elijah Millgram, John Stuart Mill and the Meaning of Life (New York: Oxford University Press, 2019), Pp. Viii + 249.Antis Loizides - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (2):246-249.
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  6.  7
    Truth, Discussion, and Free Speech in On Liberty II.Christopher Macleod - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (2):150-161.
    In this article, I offer a reading of On Liberty II which focuses on the structural features of the argument that Mill presents. Mill's argument, I suggest, is grounded on an appeal to the value of truth, and is divided into three sub-arguments, treating true, false and partially true opinion respectively. In section 1, I consider what constraints the teleological orientation of Mill's argument places on the case he makes, before examining in section 2 what the division of Mill's argument (...)
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  7.  3
    The Place of “The Liberty of Thought and Discussion” in On Liberty.Dale E. Miller - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (2):133-149.
    I consider whether Mill intends for us to see the arguments that constitute his defense of the “Liberty of Thought and Discussion” in chapter 2 of On Liberty as a part of his larger case for the “harm” or “liberty” principle. Several commentators depict this chapter as a digression that interrupts the flow between his introduction of this principle in the first chapter and his exposition and defense of it in the final three. I will argue instead for a reading (...)
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  8.  7
    From Compliance, to Acceptance, to Teaching: On Relocating Rule Consequentialism's Stipulations.Timothy D. Miller - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (2):204-220.
    Several recent formulations of Rule Consequentialism have broken with the consensus that RC should be formulated in terms of code acceptance, claiming instead that RC should focus on the consequences of codes' being taught. I begin this article with an examination of the standard case for acceptance formulations. In addition to depending on the mistaken assumption that compliance and acceptance formulations are the only options, the standard case claims advantages for acceptance formulations that, upon closer examination, favor teaching formulations. In (...)
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  9.  10
    Inequality: Do Not Disperse.David O'Brien - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (2):193-203.
    Many egalitarians incorporate a concern for interpersonal welfare inequality as part of their favored axiology – that is, they take it to be a bad-making feature of outcomes. It is natural to think that, if inequality is in this sense a bad, it is an impersonal bad. This natural thought has been challenged. Some writers claim that egalitarian judgments can be accommodated by adopting an expanded view of a person's good, according to which being worse off than others is one (...)
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  10.  13
    Why Impossible Options Are Better: Consequentializing Dilemmas.Brian Talbot - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (2):221-236.
    To consequentialize a deontological moral theory is to give a theory which issues the same moral verdicts, but explains those verdicts in terms of maximizing or satisficing value. There are many motivations for consequentializing: to reconcile plausible ideas behind deontology with plausible ideas behind consequentialism, to help us better understand deontological theories, or to extend deontological theories beyond what intuitions alone tell us. It has proven difficult to consequentialize theories that allow for moral dilemmas or that deny that “ought” implies (...)
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  11.  6
    Introduction: Updating Mill on Free Speech.Piers Norris Turner - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (2):125-132.
    John Stuart Mill's defense of freedom of discussion in On Liberty remains a major influence on philosophical and public debates about free speech. By highlighting underappreciated textual evidence and key distinctions, this introduction attempts to show how the contributions of the symposium authors – Melina Constantine Bell, Rafael Cejudo, Christopher Macleod, and Dale E. Miller – point toward a more complete account of Mill's views.
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  12. Pascal's Mugger Strikes Again.Dylan Balfour - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (1):118-124.
    In a well-known paper, Nick Bostrom presents a confrontation between a fictionalised Blaise Pascal and a mysterious mugger. The mugger persuades Pascal to hand over his wallet by exploiting Pascal's commitment to expected utility maximisation. He does so by offering Pascal an astronomically high reward such that, despite Pascal's low credence in the mugger's truthfulness, the expected utility of accepting the mugging is higher than rejecting it. In this article, I present another sort of high value, low credence mugging. This (...)
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  13.  7
    Paternalism as Punishment.David Birks - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (1):35-52.
    In this article, I argue that even if we hold that at least some paternalistic behaviour is impermissible when directed towards innocent persons, in certain cases, the same behaviour is permissible when directed towards criminal offenders. I also defend the claim that in some cases it is morally preferable to behave paternalistically towards offenders as an alternative to traditional methods of punishment. I propose that the reason paternalistic behaviour is sometimes permissible towards an offender is the same reason that inflicting (...)
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  14.  9
    The Irrationality of Adaptive Preferences: A Psychological and Semantic Account.Seena Eftekhari - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (1):68-84.
    There is little agreement among moral and political philosophers when it comes to determining what it is that makes adaptive preferences problematic. The large number of competing explanations offered by philosophers illustrates the absence of any consensus. The most prominent versions of these explanations have recently come under attack by Dale Dorsey, who argues that adaptive preferences are a red herring: the problematic nature of adaptive preferences is not explained by the fact of adaptation but by an appeal to some (...)
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  15.  20
    Leaving Agent-Relative Value Behind.Christa M. Johnson - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (1):53-67.
    Commonsense morality seems to feature both agent-neutral and agent-relative elements. For a long time, the core debate between consequentialists and deontologists was which of these features should take centerstage. With the introduction of the consequentializing project and agent-relative value, however, agent-neutrality has been left behind. While I likewise favor an agent-relative view, agent-neutral views capture important features of commonsense morality.This article investigates whether an agent-relative view can maintain what is attractive about typical agent-neutral views. In particular, I argue that the (...)
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  16.  19
    Subjectivism Without Idealization and Adaptive Preferences.Stéphane Lemaire - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (1):85-100.
    Subjectivism about well-being holds that an object contributes to one's well-being to the extent that one has a pro-attitude toward this object under certain conditions. Most subjectivists have contended that these conditions should be ideal. One reason in favor of this idea is that when people adapt their pro-attitudes to situations of oppression, the levels of well-being they may attain is diminished. Nevertheless, I first argue that appealing to idealized conditions of autonomy or any other condition to erase or replace (...)
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  17.  10
    The Relevance View: Defended and Extended.Kirsten Mann - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (1):101-110.
    The Relevance View, exemplified by Alex Voorhoeve's Aggregate Relevant Claims, has considerable appeal. It accommodates our reluctance to aggregate weak claims in canonical cases like Life for Headaches, while permitting aggregation of claims in a range of other cases. But it has been the target of significant criticism. In an important recent paper, Patrick Tomlin argues that the view suffers from failures of internal logic, violating plausible consistency constraints and generating incoherent combinations of verdicts on cases. And in cases resembling (...)
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  18.  13
    A Second-Personal Solution to the Paradox of Moral Complaint.Adam Piovarchy - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (1):111-117.
    Smilansky notes that wrongdoers seem to lack any entitlement to complain about being treated in the ways that they have treated others. However, it also seems impermissible to treat agents in certain ways, and this impermissibility would give wrongdoers who are themselves wronged grounds for complaint. This article solves this apparent paradox by arguing that what is at issue is not the right simply to make complaints, but the right to have one's demands respected. Agents must accept the authority of (...)
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  19.  15
    Reasons Internalism and the Problem of Depression.Andrew Spaid - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (1):1-16.
    This article looks at a version of the “too-few-reasons” problem for reasons internalism stemming from the existence of cases of clinical depression. People with clinical depression lack motivation to do things like go to work or seek treatment for their depression. Internalism appears committed to saying that such people lack reasons to do these things since internalism makes having reasons depend on having motivations. But, intuitively, depressed people do have reasons to do them. This article considers a number of possible (...)
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  20.  25
    Aggregation, Balancing, and Respect for the Claims of Individuals.Bastian Steuwer - 2021 - Utilitas 33 (1):17-34.
    Most non-consequentialists “let the numbers count” when one can save either a lesser or greater number from equal or similar harm. But they are wary of doing so when one can save either a small number from grave harm or instead a very large number from minor harm. Limited aggregation is an approach that reconciles these two commitments. It is motivated by a powerful idea: our decision whom to save should respect each person who has a claim to our help, (...)
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  21.  13
    The Demandingness of Individual Climate Duties: A Reply to Fragnière.Colin Hickey - 2021 - Utilitas (First view):1-8.
    In this article, I respond to Augustin Fragnière's recent attempt to understand the demandingness of individual climate duties by appealing to the difference between “concentrated” harm and “spread” harm and the importance of “moral thresholds”. I suggest his arguments don't succeed in securing the conclusion he is after, even from within his own commitments, which themselves are problematic. As this is primarily a critical project, the upshot of this discussion is that if there is a defensible way to justify the (...)
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