“Natural Rights and Two Conceptions of Promising”

Chicago-Kent Law Review 81 (9):9-19 (2006)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

Does one have an obligation to keep one’s promises? I answer this question by distinguishing between two broad conceptions of promising. On the normativized conception of promising, a promise is made when an agent validly offers to undertake an obligation to the promisee to perform some act (i.e., give up a liberty-right in relation to her) and the promisee validly accepts the offer. Keeping such promises is morally obligatory by definition. On the non- normativized conception, the nature of promising does not conceptually entail any connection with the obligation to keep promises. A promise might be understood, for example, as an assertion that one will do something along with special assurance that one will do so and an invitation to rely on that assurance. A particularly attractive and relevant non-normativized account of promising takes promising simply to be giving one’s word concerning one’s future conduct. So understood, it is plausible—as a substantive matter—that one has an obligation to (1) alert the promisee, if one realizes that he will not perform the promised action, (2) apologize and compensate the promisee, if one does not perform the action, but one has no obligation to perform the promised action.

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 76,140

External links

  • This entry has no external links. Add one.
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

On that peculiar practice of promising.Kenneth Shockley - 2008 - Philosophical Studies 140 (3):385 - 399.
Promises beyond assurance.Nicholas Southwood & Daniel Friedrich - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 144 (2):261 - 280.
Hume on promises and the peculiar act of the mind.Rachel Cohon - 2006 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 44 (1):25-45.
A contractualist account of promising.Michael J. Cholbi - 2002 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 40 (4):475-91.
Promise as practice reason.Hanoch Sheinman - 2008 - Acta Analytica 23 (4):287-318.
A simple theory of promising.David Owens - 2006 - Philosophical Review 115 (1):51-77.
Promising Too Much.Julia Driver - 2011 - In Hanoch Sheinman (ed.), Promises and Agreements: Philosophical Essays. Oxford University Press.

Analytics

Added to PP
2010-12-22

Downloads
24 (#482,779)

6 months
1 (#447,993)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Peter Vallentyne
University of Missouri, Columbia

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references