Australasian Journal of Philosophy 94 (3):435-448 (2016)

Matt Stichter
Washington State University
ABSTRACTThis paper challenges a frequent objection to conceptualizing virtues as skills, which is that skills are merely capacities to act well, while virtues additionally require being properly motivated to act well. I discuss several cases that purport to show the supposed motivational difference by drawing our attention to the differing intuitions we have about virtues and skills. However, this putative difference between virtue and skill disappears when we switch our focus in the skill examples from the performance to the performer. The ends of a practice can be used to judge not only the skilfulness of a performance, but also the motivational commitment of the performer. Being virtuous requires both acting well and being properly motivated to do so, which can be captured by viewing virtues as the moral subset of skills. In claiming this, though, I resist the idea that there is no element in virtue that is not found in other skills. Virtue requires being practically wise about how practices fit into a...
Keywords skill  expertise  virtue  practical wisdom  moral psychology  ethics
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Reprint years 2016
DOI 10.1080/00048402.2015.1074257
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References found in this work BETA

Intelligent Virtue.Julia Annas - 2011 - Oxford University Press.
Practical Wisdom: A Mundane Account.Rosalind Hursthouse - 2006 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 106 (3):283–307.
Duhem–Quine Virtue Epistemology.Abrol Fairweather - 2012 - Synthese 187 (2):673-692.
Will Power and the Virtues.Robert C. Roberts - 1984 - Philosophical Review 93 (2):227-247.

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Citations of this work BETA

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Engineered Wisdom for Learning Machines.Brett Karlan & Colin Allen - 2022 - Journal of Experimental and Theoretical Artificial Intelligence.

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