Philosophical Explorations 24 (1):34-47 (2021)

Authors
Matthew Kisner
University of South Carolina
Abstract
ABSTRACT In the Ethics, Spinoza famously wrote, “we do not seek or desire anything, because we judge it to be good; on the contrary, we judge a thing to be good because we endeavor it, will it, seek it and desire it.” This passage is widely recognized as asserting some of Spinoza's most important claims about the good, but the precise meaning of the passage is unclear, as interpreters have offered a wide variety of interpretations, often without noting their disagreements. The central interpretive question is what the key passage has to say about the relationship between desires and judgments of the good. At stake in this question is not just how we understand Spinoza's theory of the good—and by extension, much of his ethical theory – but also how we understand the reception of the scholastic Aristotelian notion that desiring something involves perceiving or thinking it to be good, the “guise of the good thesis”. This paper offers an interpretation of the passage that emphasizes differences between Spinoza and a Hobbesian view of judging the good. Rather, I show – perhaps surprisingly – that Spinoza is closer to the scholastic-Aristotelian tradition.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
ISBN(s)
DOI 10.1080/13869795.2020.1868113
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 70,091
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

A Study of Spinoza's Ethics.Jonathan Bennett - 1984 - Cambridge University Press.
Spinoza.Michael Della Rocca - 2008 - New York: Routledge.
Reconceiving Spinoza.Samuel Newlands - 2018 - Oxford University Press.
A Study of Spinoza's Ethics.Jonathan Bennett - 1984 - Critica 16 (48):110-112.

View all 29 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

The Guise of the Good and the Problem of Partiality.Allan Hazlett - 2019 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 49 (6):851-872.
Desiring Under the Proper Guise.Michael Milona & Mark Schroeder - 2019 - Oxford Studies in Metaethics 14:121-143.
Mill’s Proof and the Guise of the Good.Francesco Orsi - 2021 - Philosophical Explorations 24 (1):93-105.
Intelligibility and the Guise of the Good.Paul Boswell - 2018 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 13 (1):1-31.
Perfection and Desire: Spinoza on the Good.Matthew J. Kisner - 2010 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 91 (1):97-117.
The Guise of the Good in Leibniz.Julia Jorati - 2021 - Philosophical Explorations 24 (1):48-62.
Spinoza's Theory of Motivation.Andrew Youpa - 2007 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 88 (3):375–390.
Akratic Action Under the Guise of the Good.Eugene Chislenko - 2020 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 50 (5):606-621.
The Guise of the Bad in Augustine’s Pear Theft.Hans Bernhard Schmid - 2018 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 21 (1):71-89.
The Guise of Reasons.Alex Gregory - 2013 - American Philosophical Quarterly 50 (1):63-72.
Guise of the Good.Sergio Tenenbaum - 2013 - In Hugh LaFollette (ed.), The International Encyclopedia of Ethics. Wiley-Blackwell.
The Guise of the Good.Francesco Orsi - 2015 - Philosophy Compass 10 (10):714-724.
Desire and What It’s Rational to Do.Ashley Shaw - 2021 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 99 (4):761-775.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2021-02-21

Total views
10 ( #899,562 of 2,506,113 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #277,380 of 2,506,113 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes