Moral Worth

Journal of Philosophy 99 (5):223 (2002)
Nomy Arpaly
Brown University
I argue that a right action has moral worth if and only if it is done for the right reasons - that is, for its right-making features. The reasons the agent acts on have to be identical to the reasons for which the action is right. I argue that Kantians are wrong in thinking that a right action has moral worth iff it is done because the agent thinks it is right, giving examples of morally worthy actions that are done by agents who think they are wrong (Huckleberry Finn) and right actions done "because they are right" that have no moral worth. I also discuss degrees of moral worth as well as blameworthiness.
Keywords Moral Worth  Reasons  Huckleberry Finn  Praiseworthiness  Blameworthiness  Motive of Duty  Right Reasons  Huck Finn  Moral Reasons  Inverse Akrasia
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DOI 10.2307/3655647
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Moral Offsetting.Thomas Foerster - forthcoming - Philosophical Quarterly.
Running Risks Morally.Brian Weatherson - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 167 (1):141-163.
Reasons and Guidance.Jonathan Way & Daniel Whiting - 2016 - Analytic Philosophy 57 (3):214-235.
Accidentally Doing the Right Thing.Zoe Johnson King - forthcoming - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.

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