The content and boundaries of moral education the state may require schools to offer is a matter of contention. This article investigates whether the state may obligate schools to promote the pursuit of moral ideals. Moral ideals refer to (a cluster of) characteristics of a person as well as to situations or states that are believed to be morally excellent or perfect and that are not yet realised. Having an ideal typically means that the person is dedicated to realising the (...) type of situation or person to which the ideal refers. Therefore generating student enthusiasm for moral ideals may be an effective way to realise a morally excellent society. This article defends the position that schools may be required to promote the recognition of ideals that all reasonable citizens endorse. Reasonable citizens will not, however, accept that the state obligates schools to promote the pursuit of moral ideals. (shrink)
There is a lot of talking and writing on virtues and education nowadays. In spite of this, a clear and convincing account of the defining characteristics of the virtue approach to moral education is still lacking. This paper suggests and discusses three different definitions of such an approach. With reference to each definition it is examined whether the virtue approach can be distinguished from other main perspectives on moral education, in particular from the so-called cognitive-developmental approach (including the just community (...) approach). It is argued that only the definition that refers to an ethics of virtue will have the required differentiating capacity. (edited). (shrink)
When philosophers put forward claims for or against 'property', it is often unclear whether they are talking about the same thing that lawyers mean by 'property'. Likewise, when lawyers appeal to 'justice' in interpreting or criticizing legal rules we do not know if they have in mind something that philosophers would recognize as 'justice'. J. W. Harris here examines the legal and philosophical underpinnings of the concept of property and offers a new analytical framework for understanding property and justice.
Abstract Most parents value highly their children growing up to be just, sincere, reliable, kind and helpful people. This string of adjectives refers to certain qualities of character which are also called virtues. In this paper, I shall subject the typical motives (wants and aversions) of the virtuous human being to a conceptual investigation. Based on the results of this analysis, it will be possible to draw up an inventory of a number of important tasks educators face if they wish (...) to cultivate virtuousness in children. 1. This article is a revised version of some parts of previously published essays (Steutel, 1984; Steutel (Ed), 1984, pp.39?67). (shrink)
Sense of agency refers to the sense of initiating and controlling actions in order to influence events in the outside world. Recently, a distinction between implicit and explicit aspects of sense of agency has been proposed, analogous to distinctions found in other areas of cognition, notably learning. However, there is yet no strong evidence supporting separable implicit and explicit components of sense of agency. The so-called ‘Perruchet paradigm’ offers one of the few convincing demonstrations of separable implicit and explicit learning (...) systems. We adopted this approach to evaluate the implicit–explicit distinction in the context of a simple task in which outcomes were probabilistically caused by actions. In line with our initial predictions, we found evidence of a dissociation. We discuss the implications of this result for theories of sense of agency. (shrink)