‘Norm Acquisition, Rational Judgment and Moral Particularism’.

Theory and Research in Education 10 (1):3--25 (2012)

Abstract

This paper argues that moral particularism, defined as the view that moral judgment does not require moral principles, depends upon a constricted and untenable view of rational judgment as simple syllogistic ratiocination. This I demonstrate by re-examining Nussbaum’s (1986/2002) case for particularism based on Sophocles’ Antigone. The central role of principles in moral judgment and in educational theory is supported by explicating ‘mature judgment’, which highlights key features of Thomas Green’s account of norm acquisition and of Kant’s account of the autonomy of rational judgment.

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