By In Ideas Comments (5)

Cliched Thanksgiving Post: What moral philosophy are YOU thankful for?

As Thanksgiving rolls around, it’s time to pause and take stock of how you got to be who you are, at least as a moral/political philosopher, and what giant’s shoulders you’ve been standing on to see as far as you’ve seen. What’s the ONE moral/political philosophy book or article you’re most thankful for and how did it influence you?

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By In Featured Philosophers, Normative Ethics, Value Theory Comments (13)

Uniqueness (by Gwen Bradford)

I’m happy to introduce our current Featured Philosophy, Gwen Bradford, who teaches at Rice University and has written a creative and insightful book on achievement.  Her post today is on the nature and value of uniqueness.  Please comment with your thoughts about the interesting new territory that Gwen is exploring!


I have been thinking about uniqueness and its relationship to value.

The issue first arises in one of the important moments in value theory. The orthodox conception of intrinsic value as value strictly in virtue of intrinsic properties was questioned by counterexamples pointing to extrinsic properties generating what’s plausibly intrinsic value. Monroe Beardsley in 1965 wrote this:

One inconvenience of this definition can be brought out as follows: A sheet of postage stamps has been misprinted – the central figure, say, is inverted. …[but] its value is not for the sake of anything else. (Beardsley 1965: 61-62).


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By In Discussions, JMP Discussions, Metaethics Comments (9)

JMP Discussion on Preston Werner’s “Moral Perception without (Prior) Moral Knowledge”

Welcome to what we expect will be an interesting and productive discussion on Preston’s Werner‘s “Moral Perception without (Prior) Moral Knowledge” (which the Journal of Moral Philosophy has generously provided free access to until the end of November). David Faraci has kindly agreed to contribute a critical précis, and it appears immediately below. Please join in the discussion!

Critical Précis by David Faraci:

Thanks to PEA Soup and to the Journal of Moral Philosophy for offering me this opportunity to discuss Preston Werner’s excellent “Moral Perception without (Prior) Moral Knowledge.”

Preston’s paper is, in large part, a response to my “A Hard Look at Moral Perception” (Philosophical Studies 2015), and I want to thank him for taking the time to trudge through that paper. I’ve written a longer reply to Preston, which is also forthcoming in JMP. What I’ll say here is a mix of things I say there and some new stuff.


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By In Announcements Comments (3)

CFP: 2018 Undergraduate Ethics Symposium at the Prindle Institute for Ethics

The Janet Prindle Institute for Ethics at DePauw University is proud to announce the 11th Annual Undergraduate Ethics Symposium. Please pass this call for submissions on to undergraduate students whom you think might would be interested.

The Undergraduate Ethics Symposium will take place from April 19-21, 2018, on the theme of “Representing Disability.”

Click here to visit the submissions page for the Undergraduate Ethics Symposium. Submissions are accepted until February 9, 2018. Food and lodging are covered for all attendees, and travel assistance stipends are also available. (more…)

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By In Metaethics, Moral Psychology, Moral Responsibility, Normative Ethics, Political Philosophy, Value Theory Comments (0)

Tulane/Murphy Institute Fellowships!

The Center for Ethics and Public Affairs at the Murphy Institute at Tulane University invites applications for three Visiting Research Professorships/Faculty Fellowships for the 2018-2019 academic year.

These fellowships are available to support outstanding faculty whose teaching and research focus on ethics, political philosophy, and political theory, or questions of moral choice in areas such as, but not restricted to, business, government, law, economics, and medicine.

While fellows will participate in conferences and seminars organized by the Murphy Institute, they will be expected to devote most of their time to conducting their own research. Faculty Fellows are normally appointed as Visiting Research Professors, receive a salary of $65,000, and are eligible for Tulane faculty benefits, including health insurance.

The application deadline is December 31, 2017.


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By In Metaethics Comments Off on Upcoming JMP Discussion, November 10-12: Preston Werner’s “Moral Perception without (Prior) Moral Knowledge”

Upcoming JMP Discussion, November 10-12: Preston Werner’s “Moral Perception without (Prior) Moral Knowledge”

We’re excited to announce the fifth Journal of Moral Philosophy discussion here at PEA Soup, which will be from Friday, November 10th until Sunday, November 12th. This is sure to be another insightful and productive discussion, this time on Preston Werner’s “Moral Perception without (Prior) Moral Knowledge”. The Journal of Moral Philosophy has generously provided free access to the article until the end of November, which can be found here. David Faraci will contribute a critical précis and commentary, which will be posted when the discussion starts. Please join the fun! We’re looking forward to hearing your thoughts.

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By In Discussions, Ethics Discussions at PEA Soup, Metaethics, Normative Ethics, Political Philosophy Comments (31)

Ethics Discussion at PEA Soup: David Enoch’s “Hypothetical Consent and the Value(s) of Autonomy,” with a critical précis by Beth Valentine

Welcome to what we expect will be a very interesting and productive discussion of David Enoch’s “Hypothetical Consent and the Value(s) of Autonomy.” The paper is published in the most recent edition of Ethics and is available through open access here. Beth Valentine has kindly agreed to contribute a critical précis, and it appears immediately below. Please join in the discussion!

Précis by Beth Valentine

“Hypothetical consent is puzzling.” (p.1)  This is how Enoch begins his paper, but by the end I was convinced that this claim is false. “Hypothetical Consent and the Value(s) of Autonomy” motivates this initial puzzlement by pointing to intuitions regarding hypothetical consent that, at first, appear to lack a cohesive explanation. Through examining actual consent and autonomy, he does much to explain away this puzzlement and argues that hypothetical consent can, in some contexts, make a normative difference.


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