Emotions, Evaluation, and Ethics: The Role of Emotions in Formulating and Justifying Ethical Judgments

Abstract

The role of emotions in ethics is often taken by philosophers and others as antithetical to rationality. On the most basic level (in undergraduate philosophy exams and elsewhere), stating an opinion in the form "I feel that p" can be a way of sidestepping the demand for reasons. But emotions can sometimes also be seen as supplying reasons for moral judgment to the extent that they involve evaluations--and a way of communicating them across different moral perspectives.

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Patricia S. Greenspan
University of Maryland, College Park

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