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Ryan Pollock
Grand Valley State University
  1.  11
    The Limits of Sympathetic Concern and Moral Consideration in Adam Smith.Ryan Pollock - 2019 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 36 (3):257-277.
    Smith thinks it possible to sympathize with certain non-sentient beings, such as the human dead. Consequently, some commentators argue that Smith’s theory supports ecocentrism. I reject that Smith’s theory has this implication. Sympathizers in Smith’s theory can imagine themselves as non-sentient beings, but they will lack the relevant evaluative concerns. The situation of a non-sentient being, as that being confronts the situation, remains inaccessible to the sympathizer. I will also address the limits of sympathetic concern within Smith’s theory,; highlight a (...)
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  2. Evaluating the State of Nature Through Gameplay.Ryan Pollock - 2014 - Teaching Philosophy 37 (1):57-72.
    In this paper I present an in-class game designed to simulate the dynamics of the state of nature. I first explain the mechanics of the game, and how to administer it in the classroom. Then I address how the game can help introduce students to a number of important topics in political philosophy. In broad terms, the game serves to generate discussion regarding to main questions. (1) How does civil society come about? (2) Is the state of nature and the (...)
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  3.  19
    Hume and Peirce on the Ultimate Stability of Belief.Ryan Pollock & David W. Agler - 2016 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 97 (2):245-269.
    Louis Loeb has argued that Hume is pessimistic while Peirce is optimistic about the attainment of fully stable beliefs. In contrast, we argue that Hume was optimistic about such attainment but only if the scope of philosophical investigation is limited to first-order explanatory questions. Further, we argue that Peirce, after reformulating the pragmatic maxim to accommodate the reality of counterfactuals, was pessimistic about such attainment. Finally, we articulate and respond to Peirce's objection that Hume's skeptical arguments in T 1.4.1 and (...)
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  4.  20
    Hume and the Problem of Paternalism: When is Humanity Sufficient?Ryan Pollock - 2016 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 54 (1):107-128.
    Hume states that if a group of powerless, rational creatures lived amongst human beings, then humans would be required to treat this species with humanity but not with justice. Michael Ridge has argued that this implies humans would be required to engage in a morally dubious form of paternalism toward this imagined species. I argue that a proper understanding of why this imagined species is excluded from the scope of justice shows Hume has a plausible moral reason for requiring paternalism (...)
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  5.  3
    David Hume: Moral Philosophy.Ryan Pollock - 2019 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  6. Sociability and the Influence of the General Point of View in Hume.Ryan Pollock - 2017 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 34 (1):17-35.
    Hume believes that distinctively moral sentiments can only be felt from a disinterested perspective. While much scholarly attention has been paid to the question of how Hume believes we “correct” our moral sentiments to form a coherent moral language, less has been paid to the question of why we first adopt this disinterested vantage point. Answering this question involves determining what, for Hume, enables our disinterested point of view to influence us despite the fact that the sentiments produced by our (...)
     
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  7.  1
    David Hume: Moral Philosophy.Ryan Pollock - 2019 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    David Hume: Moral Philosophy Although David Hume is commonly known for his philosophical skepticism, and empiricist theory of knowledge, he also made many important contributions to moral philosophy. Hume’s ethical thought grapples with questions about the relationship between morality and reason, the role of human emotion in thought and action, the nature of moral … Continue reading David Hume: Moral Philosophy →.
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  8.  33
    Anik Waldow, David Hume and the Problem of Other Minds. [REVIEW]Ryan Pollock - 2012 - Tradition and Discovery 39 (1):76-79.