Croatian Journal of Philosophy 11 (3):323-352 (2011)

Authors
Abstract
Examining the moral sense theories of Francis Hutcheson, David Hume, and Adam Smith from the perspective of the is-ought problem, this essay shows that the moral sense or moral sentiments in those theories alone cannot identify appropriate morals. According to one interpretation, Hume's or Smith's theory is just a description of human nature. In this case, it does not answer the question of how we ought to live. According to another interpretation, it has some normative implications. In this case, it draws normative claims from human nature. Anyway, the sentiments of anger, resentment, vengeance, superiority, sympathy, and benevolence show that drawing norms from human nature is sometimes morally problematic. The changeability of the moral sense and moral sentiments in Hume's and Smith's theories supports this idea. Hutcheson's theory is morally more appropriate because it bases morality on disinterested benevolence. Yet disinterested benevolence is not enough for morality. There are no sentiments the presence of which alone makes any action moral.
Keywords Francis Hutcheson  David Hume  Adam Smith  moral sense  moral sentiment  human nature  is-ought problem  metaethics  ethics
Categories (categorize this paper)
ISBN(s) 1333-1108
DOI croatjphil201111324
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
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

.Antony Flew - 1976 - In ``The Presumption of Atheism&Quot. New York: Barnes & Noble.

View all 20 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Reason Alone Cannot Identify Moral Laws.Noriaki Iwasa - 2013 - Journal of Value Inquiry 47 (1-2):67-85.
Moral Applicability of Agrippa’s Trilemma.Noriaki Iwasa - 2013 - Croatian Journal of Philosophy 13 (1):109-128.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Sympathy, Beauty, and Sentiment: Adam Smith's Aesthetic Morality.Robert Fudge - 2009 - Journal of Scottish Philosophy 7 (2):133-146.
On Three Defenses of Sentimentalism.Noriaki Iwasa - 2013 - Prolegomena 12 (1):61-82.
Hume's Alleged Success Over Hutcheson.Noriaki Iwasa - 2011 - Synthesis Philosophica 26 (2):323-336.
Sentimentalism and Metaphysical Beliefs.Noriaki Iwasa - 2010 - Prolegomena 9 (2):271-286.
Das Adam Smith Problem - A Critical Realist Perspective.David Wilson & William Dixon - 2006 - Journal of Critical Realism 5 (2):251-272.
On Human Nature.Francis Hutcheson (ed.) - 1993 - Cambridge University Press.
Adam Smith and the Possibility of Sympathy with Nature.Patrick R. Frierson - 2006 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 87 (4):442–480.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2009-10-13

Total views
332 ( #30,813 of 2,499,733 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
34 ( #25,651 of 2,499,733 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes