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Naturalizing ethics

In Kelly James Clark (ed.), The Blackwell Companion to Naturalism. London, UK: pp. 16-33 (2016)

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  1. Analysing Theoretical Frameworks of Moral Education Through Lakatos’s Philosophy of Science.Hyemin Han - 2014 - Journal of Moral Education 43 (1):32-53.
    The structure of studies of moral education is basically interdisciplinary; it includes moral philosophy, psychology, and educational research. This article systematically analyses the structure of studies of moral educational from the vantage points of philosophy of science. Among the various theoretical frameworks in the field of philosophy of science, this article mainly utilizes the perspectives of Lakatos’s research program. In particular, the article considers the relations and interactions between different fields, including moral philosophy, psychology, and educational research. Finally, the potential (...)
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  • Origins of the Qualitative Aspects of Consciousness: Evolutionary Answers to Chalmers' Hard Problem.Jonathan Y. Tsou - 2013 - In Liz Swan (ed.), Origins of Mind. Springer. pp. 259--269.
    According to David Chalmers, the hard problem of consciousness consists of explaining how and why qualitative experience arises from physical states. Moreover, Chalmers argues that materialist and reductive explanations of mentality are incapable of addressing the hard problem. In this chapter, I suggest that Chalmers’ hard problem can be usefully distinguished into a ‘how question’ and ‘why question,’ and I argue that evolutionary biology has the resources to address the question of why qualitative experience arises from brain states. From this (...)
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  • The Methods of Ethics. Conflicts Built to Last.Björn Eriksson - unknown
    An impressive amount of evidence from psychology, cognitive neurology, evolutionary psychology and primatology seems to be converging on a ‘dual process’ model of moral or practical (in the philosophical sense) psychology according to which our practical judgments are generated by two distinct processes, one ‘emotive-intuitive’ and one ‘cognitive-utilitarian’. In this paper I approach the dual process model from several directions, trying to shed light on various aspects of our moral and practical lives.
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  • Normative Ethics Does Not Need a Foundation: It Needs More Science.Katinka Quintelier, Linda Van Speybroeck & Johan Braeckman - 2011 - Acta Biotheoretica 59 (1):29-51.
    The impact of science on ethics forms since long the subject of intense debate. Although there is a growing consensus that science can describe morality and explain its evolutionary origins, there is less consensus about the ability of science to provide input to the normative domain of ethics. Whereas defenders of a scientific normative ethics appeal to naturalism, its critics either see the naturalistic fallacy committed or argue that the relevance of science to normative ethics remains undemonstrated. In this paper, (...)
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  • Rethinking Ethical Naturalism: The Implications of Developmental Systems Theory.Jared J. Kinggard - unknown
    Biological research has the capacity to inform ethical discussions. There are numerous questions about the nature of sexual orientation, intelligence, gender identity, etc., and many of these questions are commonly approached with the benefit of implicit or explicit biological commitments. The answers to these sorts of questions can have a powerful impact on social, ethical, and political positions. In this project I examine the prospect of naturalizing ethics under the umbrella of developmental systems theory. If one is committed to DST, (...)
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  • Cognitive Models of Moral Decision Making.Wendell Wallach - 2010 - Topics in Cognitive Science 2 (3):420-429.
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  • One Enchanted Being: Neuroexistentialism and Meaning.Owen Flanagan - 2009 - Zygon 44 (1):41-49.
    The Really Hard Problem: Meaning in a Material World is my attempt to explain whether and how existential meaning is possible in a material world, and how such meaning is best conceived naturalistically. Neuroexistentialism conceives of our predicament in accordance with Darwin plus neuroscience. The prospects for our kind of being-in-the-world are limited by our natures as smart but fully embodied short-lived animals. Many find this picture disenchanting, even depressing. I respond to four criticisms of my relentless upbeat naturalism: that (...)
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  • A Genealogy of Early Confucian Moral Psychology.Ryan Nichols - 2011 - Philosophy East and West 61 (4):609-629.
    The project is to traverse with quite novel questions, and as though with new eyes, the enormous, distant, and so well hidden land of morality—of morality that has actually existed, actually been lived.This essay offers a contribution to the consilience of the humanities, social sciences, and life sciences in accord with naturalism (in a spirit closer to Slingerland 2008 than Wilson 1998). Human beings have a shared nature produced by evolutionary history and modified by culture, where 'culture' refers to "information (...)
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  • Methodological Challenges for Empirical Approaches to Ethics.Christopher Shirreff - 2019 - Dissertation, University of Western Ontario
    The central question for this dissertation is, how do we do moral philosophy well from within a broadly naturalist framework? Its main goal is to lay the groundwork for a methodological approach to moral philosophy that integrates traditional, intuition-driven approaches to ethics with empirical approaches that employ empirical data from biology and cognitive science. Specifically, it explores what restrictions are placed on our moral theorizing by findings in evolutionary biology, psychology, neuroscience, and other fields, and how we can integrate this (...)
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  • Morality as an Evolutionary Exaptation.Marcus Arvan - 2021 - In Johan De Smedt & Helen De Cruz (eds.), Empirically Engaged Evolutionary Ethics. Springer - Synthese Library. pp. 89-109.
    The dominant theory of the evolution of moral cognition across a variety of fields is that moral cognition is a biological adaptation to foster social cooperation. This chapter argues, to the contrary, that moral cognition is likely an evolutionary exaptation: a form of cognition where neurobiological capacities selected for in our evolutionary history for a variety of different reasons—many unrelated to social cooperation—were put to a new, prosocial use after the fact through individual rationality, learning, and the development and transmission (...)
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  • Affording Affordance Moral Realism.William A. Rottschaefer - 2021 - Biological Theory 16 (1):30-48.
    In this article I elaborate a scientifically based moral realism that I call affordance moral realism, and I offer a promissory note that affordance moral realism is the best current explanation of morality. Affordance moral realism maintains that morality is constituted by the interaction of moral agents and moral affordances. The latter are the natural and social environments in which moral agents’ activities take place and contain the objects of moral agents’ activities whose actualizations are the manifestation of substantive moral (...)
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  • Moral Gridworlds: A Theoretical Proposal for Modeling Artificial Moral Cognition.Julia Haas - 2020 - Minds and Machines 30 (2):219-246.
    I describe a suite of reinforcement learning environments in which artificial agents learn to value and respond to moral content and contexts. I illustrate the core principles of the framework by characterizing one such environment, or “gridworld,” in which an agent learns to trade-off between monetary profit and fair dealing, as applied in a standard behavioral economic paradigm. I then highlight the core technical and philosophical advantages of the learning approach for modeling moral cognition, and for addressing the so-called value (...)
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  • Neuroexistentialism: Third-Wave Existentialism.Gregg D. Caruso & Owen Flanagan - 2018 - In Gregg D. Caruso Owen Flanagan (ed.), Neuroexistentialism: Meaning, Morals, and Purpose in the Age of Neuroscience. New York: Oxford University Press.
    Existentialism is a concern about the foundation of meaning, morals, and purpose. Existentialisms arise when some foundation for these elements of being is under assault. In the past, first-wave existentialism concerned the increasingly apparent inability of religion, and religious tradition, to provide such a foundation, as typified in the writings of Kierkegaard, Dostoevsky, and Nietzsche. Second-wave existentialism, personified philosophically by Sartre, Camus, and de Beauvoir, developed in response to the inability of an overly optimistic Enlightenment vision of reason and the (...)
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  • Moral Progress and Evolution: Knowledge Versus Understanding.Eleonora Severini - 2021 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 24 (1):87-105.
    The paper explores the interplay among moral progress, evolution and moral realism. Although it is nearly uncontroversial to note that morality makes progress of one sort or another, it is far from uncontroversial to define what constitutes moral progress. In a minimal sense, moral progress occurs when a subsequent state of affairs is better than a preceding one. Moral realists conceive “it is better than” as something like “it more adequately reflects moral facts”; therefore, on a realist view, moral progress (...)
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  • The Necessity of Considering Folk Ethics in Moral Philosophy.Jalal Peykani - 2017 - Journal of Philosophical Investigations at University of Tabriz 11 (21):163-174.
    Contemporary ethics and moral philosophy need a kind of revision due to their negligence in human moral capacities, ordinary life, and humans’ expectations of ethics. The assumptions and presuppositions of ethics result in their current unsatisfactory status. In this paper, we first explore and criticize those presuppositions. Then, instead of introducing ideal presuppositions of ethics, we introduce folk ethics and its components in order to show that contemporary ethics and moral philosophy should always begin with folk ethics. The most important (...)
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  • A Principled and Cosmopolitan Neuroethics: Considerations for International Relevance.John R. Shook & James Giordano - 2014 - Philosophy, Ethics, and Humanities in Medicine 9:1.
    Neuroethics applies cognitive neuroscience for prescribing alterations to conceptions of self and society, and for prescriptively judging the ethical applications of neurotechnologies. Plentiful normative premises are available to ground such prescriptivity, however prescriptive neuroethics may remain fragmented by social conventions, cultural ideologies, and ethical theories. Herein we offer that an objectively principled neuroethics for international relevance requires a new meta-ethics: understanding how morality works, and how humans manage and improve morality, as objectively based on the brain and social sciences. This (...)
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  • Moral Agency in Media: Toward a Model to Explore Key Components of Ethical Practice.Patrick Lee Plaisance - 2011 - Journal of Mass Media Ethics 26 (2):96 - 113.
    Recent advances in moral psychology and applications of virtue science have created promising opportunities to refine theories of media practice and ethical principles. This article sets forth the theoretical foundation for a model of virtuous action among media exemplars that is multidimensional, inductive, and informed by these developments. The model draws on a range of psycho-social assessment tools to explore five key dimensions of virtuous behavior: story of the self, personality, integration of morality into the self, moral ecology, and moral (...)
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