Philosophical Review 117 (2):159-191 (2008)

Authors
Daniel Jacobson
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Abstract
This essay argues, flouting paradox, that Mill was a utilitarian but not a consequentialist. First, it contends that there is logical space for a view that deserves to be called utilitarian despite its rejection of consequentialism; second, that this logical space is, in fact, occupied by John Stuart Mill. The key to understanding Mill's unorthodox utilitarianism and the role it plays in his moral philosophy is to appreciate his sentimentalist metaethics—especially his account of wrongness in terms of fitting guilt and resentment. Mill recognizes a fundamental moral asymmetry between the agent and others, which conflicts intractably with a presupposition of consequentialism. This allows him to differentiate three potentially conflicting evaluative spheres: morality, prudence, and aesthetics. This essay's account of Mill's utilitarianism coheres with his defense of individual liberty and his embrace of supererogation, both of which elude traditional interpretations.
Keywords Analytic Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy  General Interest
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Reprint years 2011
DOI 0031-8101_117_02_159
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Agent-Neutral Deontology.Tom Dougherty - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 163 (2):527-537.
Was Mill a Non-Cognitivist?Christopher Macleod - 2013 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 51 (2):206-223.
Mill's Antirealism.Christopher Macleod - 2016 - Philosophical Quarterly 66 (263):261-279.
John Stuart Mill.Fred Wilson - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Social Morality in Mill.Piers Norris Turner - 2017 - In Gerald Gaus & Piers Turner (eds.), Public Reason in Political Philosophy: Classic Sources and Contemporary Commentaries. New York, USA: Routledge. pp. 375-400.

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