Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 23 (3-4):501-513 (2020)

Ami Harbin
Oakland University
This paper offers an ethical consideration of how fear can be a tool of agents, used to deliberately shift people away from existing beliefs, commitments, or habits, or towards new ones. It contends that properly understanding the ethical dimensions of such uses of fear depends in part on a clear understanding of the dynamics of disorientation that can be involved in such uses. Section two begins with a clarification of the connections between fear, orientation, and disorientation. It suggests that experiences of fear are in some cases either orienting or disorienting, and that the disorienting aspects of fear are in need of more attention. Section three shows how experiences of fear can be tools—they can be cultivated and wielded by agents deliberately for multiple reasons, including sometimes in order to disorient or re-orient others. Section four turns to a moral evaluation of these uses of fear, attending specifically to why the dynamics of disorientation and orientation often involved in experiences of fear are important for understanding the moral status of uses of fear.
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DOI 10.1007/s10677-020-10103-1
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References found in this work BETA

Paternalism.Gerald Dworkin - 1972 - The Monist 56 (1):64-84.
Disorientation and Moral Life.Ami Harbin - 2016 - Oxford University Press USA.
The Enforcement Approach to Coercion.Scott A. Anderson - 2010 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 5 (1):1-31.
Bodily Disorientation and Moral Change.Ami Harbin - 2012 - Hypatia 27 (2):261-280.
Disorientation and the Medicalization of Struggle.Ami Harbin - 2014 - International Journal of Feminist Approaches to Bioethics 7 (1):99.

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