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  1. added 2020-06-30
    Cultivating Disgust: Prospects and Moral Implications.Charlie Kurth - forthcoming - Emotion Review.
    Is disgust morally valuable? The answer to that question turns, in large part, on what we can do to shape disgust for the better. But this cultivation question has received surprisingly little attention in philosophical debates. To address this deficiency, this paper examines empirical work on disgust and emotion regulation. This research reveals that while we can exert some control over how we experience disgust, there’s little we can do to substantively change it at a more fundamental level. These empirical (...)
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  2. added 2020-03-28
    A Humean Approach to the Boundaries of the Moral Domain.Mark Collier - 2020 - Journal of Scottish Philosophy 18 (1):1-16.
    Hume maintains that the boundaries of morality are widely drawn in everyday life. We routinely blame characters for traits that we find disgusting, on this account, as well as those which we perceive as being harmful. Contemporary moral psychology provides further evidence that human beings have a natural tendency to moralize traits that produce feelings of repugnance. But recent work also demonstrates a significant amount of individual variation in our sensitivities to disgust. We have sufficient reason to bracket this emotion, (...)
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  3. added 2019-12-01
    Barbarous Spectacle and General Massacre: A Defence of Gory Fictions.Ian Stoner - 2020 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 37 (4):511-527.
    Many people suspect it is morally wrong to watch the graphically violent horror films colloquially known as gorefests. A prominent argument vindicating this suspicion is the Argument from Reactive Attitudes (ARA). The ARA holds that we have a duty to maintain a well-functioning moral psychology, and watching gorefests violates that duty by threatening damage to our appropriate reactive attitudes. But I argue that the ARA is probably unsound. Depictions of suffering and death in other genres typically do no damage our (...)
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  4. added 2018-07-08
    Repugnance as Performance Error: The Role of Disgust in Bioethical Intuitions.Joshua May - 2016 - In Steve Clarke, Julian Savulescu, C. A. J. Coady, Alberto Giubilini & Sagar Sanyal (eds.), The Ethics of Human Enhancement: Understanding the Debate. Oxford University Press. pp. 43-57.
    An influential argument in bioethics involves appeal to disgust, calling on us to take it seriously as a moral guide (e.g. Kass, Miller, Kahan). Some argue, for example, that genetic enhancement, especially via human reproductive cloning, is repellant or grotesque. While objectors have argued that repugnance is morally irrelevant (e.g. Nussbaum, Kelly), I argue that the problem is more fundamental: it is psychologically irrelevant. Examining recent empirical data suggests that disgust’s influence on moral judgment may be like fatigue: an exogenous (...)
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  5. added 2018-01-25
    The Limits of Appealing to Disgust.Joshua May - 2018 - In Nina Strohminger & Victor Kumar (eds.), The Moral Psychology of Disgust. Rowman & Littlefield. pp. 151-170.
    The rhetoric of disgust is common in moral discourse and political propaganda. Some believe it's pernicious, for it convinces without evidence. But scientific research now suggests that disgust is typically an effect, not a cause, of moral judgment. At best the emotion on its own only sometimes slightly amplifies a moral belief one already has. Appeals to disgust are thus dialectically unhelpful in discourse that seeks to convince. When opponents of abortion use repulsive images to make their case, they convince (...)
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  6. added 2017-09-06
    How Transparent is Disgust?Filippo Contesi - 2017 - European Journal of Philosophy 25 (4):1810-1823.
    According to the so-called transparency thesis, what is disgusting in nature cannot but be disgusting in art. This paper critically discusses the arguments that have been put forward in favour of the transparency thesis, starting with Korsmeyer's (2011) sensory view of disgust. As an alternative, it offers an account of the relationship between disgust and representation that explains, at least in part, whatever truth there is in the transparency thesis. Such an account appeals to a distinction between object-centric and situation-centric (...)
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  7. added 2017-01-26
    The Meanings of Disgusting Art.Filippo Contesi - 2016 - Essays in Philosophy 17 (1):68-94.
    It has been recently argued, contrary to the received eighteenth-century view, that disgust is compatible with aesthetic pleasure. According to such arguments, what allows this compatibility is the interest that art appreciators sometimes bestow on the cognitive content of disgust. On this view, the most interesting aspect of this cognitive content is identified in meanings connected with human mortality. The aim of this paper is to show that these arguments are unsuccessful.
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  8. added 2017-01-25
    Disgust’s Transparency.Filippo Contesi - 2016 - British Journal of Aesthetics 56 (4):347-354.
    The transparency thesis for disgust claims that what is disgusting in nature is always also disgusting in art. Versions of the thesis have been endorsed by, among others, Kant, Lessing, Mendelssohn, and, more recently, Arthur Danto, Carolyn Korsmeyer, and Jenefer Robinson. The present paper articulates and discusses different readings of the thesis. It concludes that the transparency thesis is false.
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  9. added 2017-01-17
    I Eat, Therefore I Am: Disgust and the Intersection of Food and Identity.Daniel Kelly & Nicolae Morar - 2018 - In Tyler Doggett, Anne Barnhill & Mark Budolfson (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Food Ethics. Oxford University Press. pp. 637 - 657.
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  10. added 2017-01-16
    Disgust as Heuristic.Robert Fischer - 2016 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 19 (3):679-693.
    Suppose that disgust can provide evidence of moral wrongdoing. What account of disgust might make sense of this? A recent and promising theory is the social contagion view, proposed by Alexandra Plakias. After criticizing both its descriptive and normative claims, I draw two conclusions. First, we should question the wisdom of drawing so straight a line from biological poisons and pathogens to social counterparts. Second, we don’t need to explain the evidential value of disgust by appealing to what the response (...)
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  11. added 2016-02-18
    A Schooling in Contempt: Emotions and the Pathos of Distance.Mark Alfano - 2018 - In Paul Katsafanas (ed.), Routledge Philosophy Minds: Nietzsche. Routledge.
    Nietzsche scholars have developed an interest in his use of “thick” moral psychological concepts such as virtues and emotions. This development coincides with a renewed interest among both philosophers and social scientists in virtues, the emotions, and moral psychology more generally. Contemporary work in empirical moral psychology posits contempt and disgust as both basic emotions and moral foundations of normative codes. While virtues can be individuated in various ways, one attractive principle of individuation is to index them to characteristic emotions (...)
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  12. added 2015-10-03
    Emotional Reactions to Human Reproductive Cloning.Joshua May - 2016 - Journal of Medical Ethics 42 (1):26-30.
    [Selected as EDITOR'S CHOICE] Background: Extant surveys of people’s attitudes toward human reproductive cloning focus on moral judgments alone, not emotional reactions or sentiments. This is especially important given that some (esp. Leon Kass) have argued against such cloning on the grounds that it engenders widespread negative emotions, like disgust, that provide a moral guide. Objective: To provide some data on emotional reactions to human cloning, with a focus on repugnance, given its prominence in the literature. Methods: This brief mixed-method (...)
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  13. added 2015-09-05
    ‘Implied…or Implode?’: The Simpsons' Carnivalesque Treehouse of Horror Specials.Steve Jones - 2010 - Animation 18.
    Since 1990, The Simpsons’ annual “Treehouse of Horror” episodes have constituted a production sub-context within the series, having their own conventions and historical trajectory. These specials incorporate horror plots and devices, as well as general references to science fiction, into the series’ base in situation comedy. The Halloween specials disrupt the series usual family-oriented sitcom structure, dissolving the ideological balances that stabilise that society. By depicting the Family and community in extreme circumstances, in seeing the horror of ‘how things could (...)
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  14. added 2015-09-04
    XXXombies: Economies of Desire and Disgust.Steve Jones - 2013
    Drawing on the well-established understanding of the zombie as metaphor for the deadening effects of consumer capitalism, this chapter seeks to account for three distinct changes that contextualise 21st century zombie fiction. The first is situational: the global economic crisis has amplified the anxieties that inspired Romero's critique of consumer capitalism in Dawn of the Dead (1978). The second is intellectual: as Chapman and Anderson (2011) note, there has been an “explosion of research on all aspects of disgust” in recent (...)
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  15. added 2015-09-04
    No Pain, No Gain: Strategic Repulsion and The Human Centipede.Steve Jones - 2013 - Cine-Excess E-Journal 1 (1).
    Tom Six’s The Human Centipede (First Sequence) (2009) and The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence) (2011) are based on a disturbing premise: people are abducted and stitched together mouth-to-anus. The consequent combinations of faeces and bloodshed, torture and degradation have been roundly vilified by the critical press. Additionally, the sequel was officially banned or heavily censored in numerous countries. This article argues that these reactive forms of suppression fail to engage with the films themselves, or the concepts (such as disgust (...)
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  16. added 2015-03-13
    Korsmeyer on Fiction and Disgust.Filippo Contesi - 2015 - British Journal of Aesthetics 55 (1):109-116.
    In Savoring Disgust, Carolyn Korsmeyer argues that disgust is peculiar amongst emotions, for it does not need any of the standard solutions to the so-called paradox of fiction. I argue that Korsmeyer’s arguments in support of the peculiarity of disgust with respect to the paradox of fiction are not successful.
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  17. added 2015-02-05
    Visceral Values: Aurel Kolnai on Disgust.Carolyn Korsmeyer & Barry Smith - 2004 - In Barry Smith & Carolyn Korsmeyer (eds.), Aurel Kolnai's On Disgust. Open Court Publishing Company. pp. 1-23.
    In 1929 when Aurel Kolnai published his essay “On Disgust” in Husserl's ]ahrbuch he could truly assert that disgust was a "sorely neglected" topic. Now, however, this situation is changing as philosophers, psychologists, and historians of culture are turning their attention not only to emotions in general but more specifically to the large and disturbing set of aversive emotions, including disgust. We here provide an account of Kolnai’s contribution to the study of the phenomenon of disgust, of his general theory (...)
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  18. added 2014-09-27
    Does Disgust Influence Moral Judgment?Joshua May - 2014 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 92 (1):125-141.
    Recent empirical research seems to show that emotions play a substantial role in moral judgment. Perhaps the most important line of support for this claim focuses on disgust. A number of philosophers and scientists argue that there is adequate evidence showing that disgust significantly influences various moral judgments. And this has been used to support or undermine a range of philosophical theories, such as sentimentalism and deontology. I argue that the existing evidence does not support such arguments. At best it (...)
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  19. added 2014-09-27
    Bioconservatism, Bioliberalism, and Repugnance.Rebecca Roache & Steve Clarke - 2009 - Monash Bioethics Review 28 (1):04.1-04.21.
    We consider the current debate between bioconservatives and their opponents—whom we dub bioliberals—about the moral acceptability of human enhancement and the policy implications of moral debates about enhancement. We argue that this debate has reached an impasse, largely because bioconservatives hold that we should honour intuitions about the special value of being human, even if we cannot identify reasons to ground those intuitions. We argue that although intuitions are often a reliable guide to belief and action, there are circumstances in (...)
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  20. added 2014-09-27
    Disgust Sensitivity Predicts Intuitive Disapproval of Gays.Yoel Inbar, David A. Pizarro, Joshua Knobe & Paul Bloom - 2009 - Emotion 9 (3): 435– 43.
    Two studies demonstrate that a dispositional proneness to disgust (“disgust sensitivity”) is associated with intuitive disapproval of gay people. Study 1 was based on previous research showing that people are more likely to describe a behavior as intentional when they see it as morally wrong (see Knobe, 2006, for a review). As predicted, the more disgust sensitive participants were, the more likely they were to describe an agent whose behavior had the side effect of causing gay men to kiss in (...)
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  21. added 2014-07-30
    Comment: Kolnai's Disgust.Carolyn Korsmeyer & Barry Smith - 2014 - Emotion Review 6 (3):219-220.
    In his The Meaning of Disgust, Colin McGinn employs elements of the phenomenological theory of disgust advanced by Aurel Kolnai in 1929. Kolnai’s treatment of what he calls “material” disgust and of its primary elicitors—putrefying organic matter, bodily wastes and secretions, sticky contaminants, vermin—anticipates more recent scientific treatments of this emotion as a mode of protective recoil. While Nina Strohminger charges McGinn with neglecting such scientific studies, we here attempt to show how Kolnai goes beyond experimental findings in his careful (...)
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  22. added 2014-03-13
    Savoring Disgust: The Foul and the Fair in Aesthetics. [REVIEW]Filippo Contesi - 2012 - British Journal of Aesthetics 52 (1):113-116.
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