Moral insanity and practical reason

Philosophical Psychology 5 (1):53 – 67 (1992)

Authors
Grant Gillett
University of Otago
Carl Elliott
University of Minnesota
Abstract
The psychopathic personality disorder historically has been thought to include an insensitivity to morality. Some have thought that the psychopath's insensitivity indicates that he does not understand morality, but the relationship between the psychopath's defects and moral understanding has been unclear. We attempt to clarify this relationship, first by arguing that moral understanding is incomplete without concern for morality, and second, by showing that the psychopath demonstrates defects in frontal lobe activity which indicate impaired attention and adaptation to environmental conditions which are relevant to the formation of complex intentions. We argue that these frontal lobe defects can help to explain both the psychopath's apparent insensitivity to morality and his characteristic imprudence.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1080/09515089208573043
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 45,434
External links

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

General Psychopathology.Karl Jaspers - 1913 - Johns Hopkins University Press.
I: A Lecture on Ethics.Ludwig Wittgenstein - 1965 - Philosophical Review 74 (1):3-12.
Diagnosing Blame: Responsibility and the Psychopath.Carl Elliott - 1992 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 17 (2):199-214.

View all 10 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

What We Owe the Psychopath: A Neuroethical Analysis.Grant Gillett & Jiaochen Huang - 2013 - American Journal of Bioethics Neuroscience 4 (2):3-9.
Psychopathy, Agency, and Practical Reason.Monique Wonderly - forthcoming - In Ruth Chang & Kurt Sylvan (eds.), Routledge Handbook of Practical Reason. New York, USA: Routledge.
Moral Madness.David Carr - 2010 - Philosophical Investigations 33 (2):103-125.
'Ought' and Well-Being.Grant Gillett - 1993 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 36 (3):287 – 306.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

The Mad, the Bad, and the Psychopath.Heidi L. Maibom - 2008 - Neuroethics 1 (3):167-184.
Psychopathy: The Incapacity to Have Moral Emotions.Ben Spiecker - 1988 - Journal of Moral Education 17 (2):98-104.
The Responsibility of the Psychopath Revisited.Neil Levy - 2007 - Philosophy, Psychiatry, and Psychology 14 (2):pp. 129-138.
Autism, Empathy and Moral Agency.Jeanette Kennett - 2002 - Philosophical Quarterly 52 (208):340-357.
Failed Agency and the Insanity Defence.Steve Matthews - 2004 - International Journal of Law and Psychiatry 27:413-424.
Moral Unreason: The Case of Psychopathy.Heidi Lene Maibom - 2005 - Mind and Language 20 (2):237-57.
Diagnosing Blame: Responsibility and the Psychopath.Carl Elliott - 1992 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 17 (2):199-214.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2009-03-08

Total views
39 ( #226,646 of 2,280,327 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
6 ( #187,189 of 2,280,327 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature