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By In Ethics Discussions at PEA Soup, Metaethics, Value Theory Comments (15)

Ethics Discussion at PEA Soup: Louise Hanson’s “Moral Realism, Aesthetic Realism, and the Asymmetry Claim,” with a critical précis by Alex King

 

Welcome to what we expect will be a very interesting and productive discussion of Louise Hanson‘s “Moral Realism, Aesthetic Realism, and the Asymmetry Claim.” The paper is published in the most recent edition of Ethics, and is available here. Alex King has kindly agreed to contribute a critical précis, and it appears immediately below. Please join in the discussion!

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By In Ethics Discussions at PEA Soup, Metaethics, Uncategorized, Value Theory Comments (0)

Upcoming Ethics review forum: Eklund’s Choosing Normative Concepts, reviewed by Raskoff

We’re pleased to announce our next Ethics review forum on Matti Eklund’s Choosing Normative Concepts (OUP 2017), reviewed by Sarah Zoe Raskoff. Excerpts from the blurb and the review are below, but you can read both in their entirety via OUP’s website and Ethics, respectively. (Though of course, you are welcome to participate in the forum even if you haven’t read either. We get it: You’re busy; you’ve got things to do, places to be, normative concepts to choose.)

The forum will start on the morning of Friday October 12.

 

 

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By In NDPR Discussion Forum, Normative Ethics, Value Theory Comments (11)

NDPR Forum: Cheshire Calhoun’s Doing Valuable Time

Welcome to our NDPR review forum on Cheshire Calhoun’s Doing Valuable Time: The Present, the Future, and Meaningful Living (OUP 2018), reviewed by Valerie Tiberius. Please feel free to comment on any aspect of the book, the review, or the discussion below!

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By In Happiness, Ideas, Value Theory Comments (7)

Gwen Bradford: Pain’s Badness

There is surprisingly little discussion about pain’s badness in the philosophical literature. One might think that it falls naturally out of any of the various theories of well-being, but this is not so straightforward (as Shelly Kagan argues).[1] In recent work, I look at some ways pain’s badness can be explained. This post summarizes some of my arguments.

At first, the explanation for pain’s badness seems simple: it hurts! Ideally, an account of pain’s badness will appeal to pain’s feel in the explanation. It would be nice if that were all there were to it – pain is bad straightforwardly in virtue of the negative feeling tone. Call such a view dolorism. Straightforward dolorism is, however, too straightforward. It fails to allow for cases where pain is not intuitively bad. I will discuss one type of case. (Another, which I explain elsewhere, is a condition called pain asymbolia, in which patients report to experience pain but don’t find it bothersome.)

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By In Happiness, Ideas, Value Theory Comments (7)

Lorraine L. Besser: The Fundamental Value of the Interesting

Think of the most recent remarkable experience you’ve had. Perhaps it was reading an engrossing novel that opened your eyes to a new depth of poverty, stamina, and kindness. Perhaps it was attending a sporting event you thought would exemplify stereotypes on the basest level yet turned out to deliver an unexpected but welcome insight into empowerment and dedication. Perhaps it was a sappy movie that helped you to cry when you most needed it, and then to laugh it off, so that you emerge with a fresh emotional state. Perhaps it was simply the wrong turn you took when trying to get across town that led you to discover a playground full of Somali immigrants, dressed in beautiful colors, playing soccer.

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By In Applied Ethics, Normative Ethics, Value Theory Comments (15)

“Everyday” and “Alienated” Approaches to Moral Theory

This post is partly a “bleg” and partly an invitation for people to give their two cents on what strikes me as a very deep and important divide among moral theorists.

Consider so-called “common-sense morality”. It consists of claims like, “It’s wrong to take someone else’s property”; “You shouldn’t handle others’ bodies without their consent”; “The job should go to the person who deserves it”; “Academic censorship is wrong because it goes against the very purposes of the university”; “It’s worse to do harm than to merely allow it to occur”; “You shouldn’t make a promise that you don’t intend to keep”; etc. It gets called “common-sense” mainly because it’s thought to capture the moral leanings of the person on the street. But it’s also fair to call it “common-sense” just because of the way it conceptually carves the world for evaluation in terms of “should”, “worse”, and so on — namely, in terms of “property”, “consent”, “job”, “point”, “do/allow”, “promise”, “intend”. These are common-sense conceptualizations because they are the conceptualizations that common-sense morality employs.

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By In Happiness, Value Theory Comments (6)

David Sobel: Two Roles for the Attitudes in an Account of Well-Being

Steve Wall and I have been thinking together about what the best theory of well-being that claims that loving the (prudentially) good is itself (prudentially) good would look like. Such views have been lovingly explored by, among others, Parfit, Darwall, Kagan, and Feldman. On such a view, there are objective prudential values, for example, achievement or friendship, which either have prudential value independently from any attitudes or whose value is more easily unlocked by the relevant attitudes than options without this objective value. Typically such views maintain that being objectively good, and one in some way loving or enjoying that objective good, are each necessary conditions, and jointly sufficient, for a benefit. (NB: The view under discussion here is different from Hurka’s related version of “loving the good is itself good” as Hurka ties this thought to virtue and he is not talking about prudential value.)

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