Praise and Blame: Moral Realism and Its Applications (New Forum Books)

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Praise and Blame: Moral Realism and Its Applications (New Forum Books) [ Daniel N. Robinson] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Praise and Blame: Moral Realism and Its Applications. Daniel N. Series: New Forum Books Try searching on JSTOR for other items related to this book.

So much modern ethical and political philosophers wish to have an issue displaying that morality is rationally required. Sterba presents simply such an issue and extra exhibits that morality, so justified, calls for tremendous equality. His argument from rationality to morality relies at the precept of non-question-beggingness and has types.

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Ethics at the Beginning of Life: A phenomenological critique Oxford Studies in Theological Ethics. A few of the so much debatable ethical judgements we are facing hinge upon competing descriptions of existence, and not is that this more true than initially of existence.

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Robinson denies that we might properly praise someone for her native intelligence or beauty, being apparently unwilling to consider any non-moral forms of praise or blame. He insists that one can feel shame only for moral failings, leaving us to wonder about the person who seems ashamed, and not merely embarrassed, by his poverty, stupidity, or ugliness.

The picture here is suggestive, but hard to evaluate without more of a story about what character is supposed to be, or what it might be to distort or destroy a moral property. Robinson usually treats character in terms of relatively stable and long-term behavioral dispositions. However, he also seems to consider any intention or choice we make to be part of our character as well, no matter how unrepresentative of our general tendencies it may be.

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Robinson is similarly unclear as to the sort of moral damage and repair that is at stake. I am not normally blameworthy if I release someone from a debt, even though I have removed some sum of the moral property being owed to someone.

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Certain moral demands have been violated or dishonored, but there is no obvious way to translate this into the quasi-causal language of destruction and disfigurement. B is entitled to respect as a rational, autonomous agent, and nothing A has done changes that.

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Robinson concludes with an interpretation of moral praise and blame as a kind of rhetoric, by which we strive to either reward and encourage someone for her moral sensitivities, or to spur her through a kind of punishment to be more attentive to the moral reality that is before us all. Merely doing the right thing, however, does not certify the actor as a moral being, for one might be made to do so by hypnotic suggestion, under duress, through inadvertence, or as a result of being a manufactured device designed to behave in a certain way. Rather, some moral property e. When I judge one action or event to be clearly more wrongful than another, I am actually basing the judgment on my estimation of which would create a greater indignation were both to occur at the same time. His argument from rationality to morality relies at the precept of non-question-beggingness and has types. Anger is not only ubiquitous, it's also well known. Qu'est-ce qu'avoir du pouvoir?

A has perhaps destroyed his own guiltlessness, but since this fact is just a logical consequence of his having performed a blameworthy action, it can hardly serve as an explanation of it. Yet such uninterpreted metaphors of damage and repair are all Robinson gives us to make sense of just what we are supposed to be doing when we take up the reactive attitudes toward others or ourselves. Praise and Blame is a strangely unfocussed work that flits back and forth amongst a wide array of philosophical topics but fails to sustain any substantive line of argument for very long.

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Despite all the ground he covers, Robinson leaves us with conclusions that are either fairly jejune versions of familiar positions or hopelessly vague if high-minded gestures. Rather, such realism seems to be merely an excuse for treating a variety of loosely related if interesting topics together. What results is a farrago that does not advance the current debate about moral realism and the moral sentiments, and indeed does not even seem to have caught up with it.