Journal of Value Inquiry 55 (2):229-249 (2021)

Authors
Will Small
University of Illinois, Chicago
Abstract
Julia Annas proposes to shed light on the intelligence of virtue through an analogy with the intelligence of practical skills. To do so, she first aims to distinguish genuine skills and skillful actions from mere habits and routine behaviour: like skills, habits are acquired through habituation and issue in action immediately (i.e. unmediated by reasoning about what to do), but the routine behaviour in which habit issues is mindless and unintelligent, and cannot serve to establish or illuminate the intelligence of virtuous action. In a second step, she argues that virtue has the same kind of intellectual structure—and is acquired through the same kind of habituation—as skill. I argue that Annas’s proposal fails at the first step: her conceptions of the rational articulacy of skill and the immediacy that characterizes its exercise in action cannot be squared. I offer an alternative conception of the intelligence of skill and its exercise that draws on Aristotle’s conception of rational capacities as two-way powers. But as a virtue is not a two-way power, virtues and skills do not share a common intellectual structure.
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DOI 10.1007/s10790-021-09813-1
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References found in this work BETA

Virtue and Reason.John McDowell - 1979 - The Monist 62 (3):331-350.
The Return of the Myth of the Mental.Hubert L. Dreyfus - 2007 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 50 (4):352 – 365.
Virtues and Vices.Philippa Foot - 1983 - Noûs 17 (1):117-121.
Practical Expertise.Julia Annas - 2011 - In John Bengson & Marc A. Moffett (eds.), Knowing How: Essays on Knowledge, Mind, and Action. Oxford University Press, Usa. pp. 101.
Skill, Drill, and Intelligent Performance: Ryle and Intellectualism.Stina Bäckström & Martin Gustafsson - 2017 - Journal for the History of Analytical Philosophy 5 (5).

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Citations of this work BETA

Practical Knowledge and Habits of Mind.Will Small - 2020 - Journal of Philosophy of Education 54 (2):377-397.

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