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  1. Reasonable Expectations, Moral Responsibility, and Empirical Data.Fernando Rudy-Hiller - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies.
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  • Inarticulate Forgiveness.Emer O'Hagan - 2019 - Metaphilosophy 50 (4):536-550.
    Influentially, Pamela Hieronymi has argued that any account of forgiveness must be both articulate and uncompromising. It must articulate the change in judgement that results in the forgiver’s loss of resentment without excusing or justifying the misdeed, and without comprising a commitment to the transgressor=s responsibility, the wrongness of the action, and the transgressed person=s self-worth. Non-articulate accounts of forgiveness, which rely on indirect strategies for reducing resentment (for example, reflecting on the transgressor’s bad childhood) are said to fail to (...)
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  • Epistemic Duty and Implicit Bias.Lindsay Rettler & Bradley Rettler - forthcoming - In Kevin McCain & Scott Stapleford (eds.), Epistemic Duties. Routledge.
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  • Inequality, Incentives, Criminality, and Blame.Christopher Lewis - 2016 - Legal Theory 22 (2):153-180.
    ABSTRACTThe disadvantaged have incentives to commit crime, and to develop criminogenic dispositions, that limit the extent to which their co-citizens can blame them for breaking the law. This is true regardless of whether the causes of criminality are mainly “structural” or “cultural.” We need not assume that society as a whole is unjust in order to accept this conclusion. And doing so would neither stigmatize nor otherwise disrespect the disadvantaged.
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  • What Kind of Responsibility Do We Have for Fighting Injustice? A Moral-Theoretic Perspective on the Social Connections Model.Robin Zheng - 2019 - Critical Horizons 20 (2):109-126.
    Iris Marion Young’s influential Social Connections Model of responsibility offers a compelling approach to theorizing structural injustice. However, the precise nature of the kind of responsibility modelled by the SCM, along with its relationship to the liability model, has remained unclear. I offer a reading of Young that takes the difference between the liability model and the SCM to be an instance of a more longstanding distinction in the literature on moral responsibility: attributability vs. accountability. I show that interpreting the (...)
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  • Opting for the Best: Oughts and Options.Douglas W. Portmore - 2019 - New York, NY, USA: Oxford University Press.
    The book concerns what I take to be the least controversial normative principle concerning action: you ought to perform your best option—best, that is, in terms of whatever ultimately matters. The book sets aside the question of what ultimately matters so as to focus on more basic issues, such as: What are our options? Do I have the option of typing out the cure for cancer if that’s what I would in fact do if I had the right intentions at (...)
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  • Irrational Blame.Hanna Pickard - 2013 - Analysis 73 (4):613-626.
    I clarify some ambiguities in blame-talk and argue that blame's potential for irrationality and propensity to sting vitiates accounts of blame that identify it with consciously accessible, personal-level judgements or beliefs. Drawing on the cognitive psychology of emotion and appraisal theory, I develop an account of blame that accommodates these features. I suggest that blame consists in a range of hostile, negative first-order emotions, towards which the blamer has a specific, accompanying second-order attitude, namely, a feeling of entitlement—a feeling that (...)
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  • Blame: Strangers and the Moral Relationship.Eric Brown - 2017 - Analysis 77 (1):10-20.
    In his recent work, T.M. Scanlon has argued for a relationship based theory of blame. For Scanlon moral blame involves the modification of the moral relationship. He holds that this relationship obtains among all rational beings. George Sher has recently argued that Scanlon’s theory cannot account for blame between strangers. Following Sher, I argue that Scanlon’s account of blame precludes complete strangers and that his conception of the moral relationship is fundamentally inconsistent with his theory of blame generally. I contend (...)
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  • The Attributionist Approach to Moral Luck.Matthew Talbert - 2019 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 43 (1):24-41.
    Midwest Studies In Philosophy, EarlyView.
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  • Basically Deserved Blame and its Value.Michael McKenna - 2019 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 15 (3).
    How should we understand basic desert as a justification for blaming? Many philosophers account for free will by reference to the sort of moral responsibility that involves a blameworthy person deserving blame in a basic sense of desert; free will just is the control condition for this sort of moral responsibility. But what precisely does basic desert come to, and what is it about blame that makes it the thing that a blameworthy person deserves? As it turns out, there are (...)
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  • Character and Blame in Hume and Beyond.Antti Kauppinen - 2016 - In Iskra Fileva (ed.), Questions of Character. Oxford University Press.
    Are we really to blame only for actions that manifest our character, as Hume claims? In this paper, I explore Hume's reasoning and the nature of blame in general. I suggest that insofar as blame comes in a relational variety as well as the more familiar reactive one, there may be something to be said for linking blame with character flaws after all.
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  • Scaffolding Agency: A Proleptic Account of the Reactive Attitudes.Victoria McGeer - 2019 - European Journal of Philosophy 27 (2):301-323.
    This paper examines the methodological claim made famous by P.F. Strawson: that we understand what features are required for responsible agency by exploring our attitudes and practices of holding responsible. What is the presumed metaphysical connection between holding responsible and being fit to be held responsible that makes this claim credible? I propose a non-standard answer to this question, arguing for a view of responsible agency that is neither anti-realist (i.e. purely 'conventionalist') nor straightforwardly realist. It is instead ‘constructivist’. On (...)
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  • In Defense of Doxastic Blame.Lindsay Rettler - 2018 - Synthese 195 (5):2205-2226.
    In this paper I articulate a view of doxastic control that helps defend the legitimacy of our practice of blaming people for their beliefs. I distinguish between three types of doxastic control: intention-based, reason-based, and influence-based. First I argue that, although we lack direct intention-based control over our beliefs, such control is not necessary for legitimate doxastic blame. Second, I suggest that we distinguish two types of reason-responsiveness: sensitivity to reasons and appreciation of reasons. I argue that while both capacities (...)
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  • The Emotion Account of Blame.Leonhard Menges - 2017 - Philosophical Studies 174 (1):257-273.
    For a long time the dominant view on the nature of blame was that to blame someone is to have an emotion toward her, such as anger, resentment or indignation in the case of blaming someone else and guilt in the case of self-blame. Even though this view is still widely held, it has recently come under heavy attack. The aim of this paper is to elaborate the idea that to blame is to have an emotion and to defend the (...)
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  • Blameworthiness as Deserved Guilt.Andreas Carlsson - 2017 - The Journal of Ethics 21 (1):89-115.
    It is often assumed that we are only blameworthy for that over which we have control. In recent years, however, several philosophers have argued that we can be blameworthy for occurrences that appear to be outside our control, such as attitudes, beliefs and omissions. This has prompted the question of why control should be a condition on blameworthiness. This paper aims at defending the control condition by developing a new conception of blameworthiness: To be blameworthy, I argue, is most fundamentally (...)
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  • Firm Responses to Mass Outrage: Technology, Blame, and Employment.Vikram R. Bhargava - forthcoming - Journal of Business Ethics:1-22.
    When an employee’s off-duty conduct generates mass social media outrage, managers commonly respond by firing the employee. This, I argue, can be a mistake. The thesis I defend is the following: the fact that a firing would occur in a mass social media outrage context brought about by the employee’s off-duty conduct generates a strong ethical reason weighing against the act. In particular, it contributes to the firing constituting an inappropriate act of blame. Scholars who caution against firing an employee (...)
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  • I—Miranda Fricker: The Relativism of Blame and Williams's Relativism of Distance.Miranda Fricker - 2010 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 84 (1):151-177.
    Bernard Williams is a sceptic about the objectivity of moral value, embracing instead a qualified moral relativism—the ‘relativism of distance’. His attitude to blame too is in part sceptical. I will argue that the relativism of distance is unconvincing, even incoherent; but also that it is detachable from the rest of Williams's moral philosophy. I will then go on to propose an entirely localized thesis I call the relativism of blame, which says that when an agent's moral shortcomings by our (...)
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  • Reasons and Oughts: An Explanation and Defence of Deontic Buck-Passing.Euan Hans Metz - 2018 - Dissertation, University of Reading
    This thesis is about what a normative reason is and how reasons relate to oughts. I argue that normative reasons are to be understood as relational properties of favouring or disfavouring. I then examine the question: What is the relation between reasons, so understood, and what we ought to do, believe, or feel? I argue that the relation is an explanatory one. We should explain what we ought to do in terms of reasons, and not the other way around. This (...)
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  • Shame and Attributability.Andreas Brekke Carlsson - forthcoming - In David Shoemaker (ed.), Oxford Studies in Agency and Responsibility, vol. 6.
    Responsibility as accountability is normally taken to have stricter control conditions than responsibility as attributability. A common way to argue for this claim is to point to differences in the harmfulness of blame involved in these different kinds of responsibility. This paper argues that this explanation does not work once we shift our focus from other-directed blame to self-blame. To blame oneself in the accountability sense is to feel guilt and feeling guilty is to suffer. To blame oneself in the (...)
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  • Mere Moral Failure.Julie Tannenbaum - 2015 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 45 (1):58-84.
    When, in spite of our good intentions, we fail to meet our obligations to others, it is important that we have the correct theoretical description of what has happened so that mutual understanding and the right sort of social repair can occur. Consider an agent who promises to help pick a friend up from the airport. She takes the freeway, forgetting that it is under construction. After a long wait, the friend takes an expensive taxi ride home. Most theorists and (...)
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  • “Screw You!” & “Thank You”.Coleen Macnamara - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 165 (3):893-914.
    If I do you a good turn, you may respond with gratitude and express that gratitude by saying “Thank you.” Similarly, if I insult you, you may react with resentment which you express by shouting, “Screw you!” or something of the sort. Broadly put, when confronted with another’s morally significant conduct, we are inclined to respond with a reactive attitude and to express that reactive attitude in speech. A number of familiar speech acts have a call-and-response structure. Questions, demands and (...)
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  • Desert, Fairness, and Resentment.Dana Kay Nelkin - 2013 - Philosophical Explorations 16 (2):1-16.
    Responsibility, blameworthiness in particular, has been characterized in a number of ways in a literature in which participants appear to be talking about the same thing much of the time. More specifically, blameworthiness has been characterized in terms of what sorts of responses are fair, appropriate, and deserved in a basic way, where the responses in question range over blame, sanctions, alterations to interpersonal relationships, and the reactive attitudes, such as resentment and indignation. In this paper, I explore the relationships (...)
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  • The Reasons of Trust.Pamela Hieronymi - 2008 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 86 (2):213 – 236.
    I argue to a conclusion I find at once surprising and intuitive: although many considerations show trust useful, valuable, important, or required, these are not the reasons for which one trusts a particular person to do a particular thing. The reasons for which one trusts a particular person on a particular occasion concern, not the value, importance, or necessity of trust itself, but rather the trustworthiness of the person in question in the matter at hand. In fact, I will suggest (...)
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  • Responsibility, Rational Abilities, and Two Kinds of Fairness Arguments.Dana Kay Nelkin - 2009 - Philosophical Explorations 12 (2):151 – 165.
    In this paper, I begin by considering a traditional argument according to which it would be unfair to impose sanctions on people for performing actions when they could not do otherwise, and thus that no one who lacks the ability to do otherwise is responsible or blameworthy for his or her actions in an important sense. Interestingly, a parallel argument concluding that people are not responsible or praiseworthy if they lack the ability to do otherwise is not as compelling. Watson, (...)
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  • Non-Distributive Blameworthiness.Thomas H. Smith - 2009 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 109 (1pt1):31-60.
    I adapt an old example of Frank Jackson's, in order to show that it is not only possible that actions with different individual agents are sub-optimal when each is not, but that they are impermissible when each is not, and blameworthy when each is not.
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  • Moral Responsibility, Voluntary Control, and Intentional Action.Kyle G. Fritz - 2018 - Philosophia 46 (4):831-855.
    Many theorists writing about moral responsibility accept that voluntary control is necessary for responsibility. Call such theorists volitionists. Recently, volitionism has been called into question by theorists I call nonvolitionists. Yet neither volitionists nor nonvolitionists have carefully articulated a clear volitionist thesis, nor have they sufficiently explained the concept of voluntary control that somehow seems connected to volitionism. I argue that attempts to explain the volitionist thesis, voluntary control, and their relation are more problematic than have previously been recognized. Instead, (...)
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  • Inadequate Agency and Appropriate Anger.Daphne Brandenburg - 2019 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 22 (1):169-185.
    Communication and cultivation accounts of responsibility argue that blaming has an important communicative and agency-cultivating function when addressed at someone we consider to be deserving of blame. On these accounts, responsible agents are agents who can understand negative reactive attitudes and are sensitive to their moral-agency cultivating function. In this paper I examine our reproachful engagements with agents whose moral agency is underdeveloped or compromised. I discuss how these engagements compare to blaming on CC accounts and argue reproachful engagements can (...)
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  • Private Blame.Julia Driver - 2016 - Criminal Law and Philosophy 10 (2):215-220.
    This paper explores a problem for Michael McKenna’s conversation model of moral responsibility that views blame as characteristically part of a conversational exchange. The problem for this model on which this paper focuses is the problem of private blame. Sometimes when we blame we do so without any intention to engage in a communicative exchange. It is argued that McKenna’s model cannot adequately account for private blame.
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  • Review: Sher's Defense of Blame. [REVIEW]Pamela Hieronymi - 2008 - Philosophical Studies 137 (1):19-30.
    In his In Praise of Blame, George Sher aims to provide an analysis and defense of blame. In fact, he aims to provide an analysis that will itself yield a defense by allowing him to argue that morality and blame "stand or fall together." He thus opposes anyone who recommends jettisoning blame while preserving (the rest of) morality. In this comment, I examine Sher's defense of blame. Though I am much in sympathy with Sher's strategy of defending blame by providing (...)
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  • Blameworthiness and the Affective Account of Blame.Neal A. Tognazzini - 2013 - Philosophia 41 (4):1299-1312.
    One of the most influential accounts of blame—the affective account—takes its cue from P.F. Strawson’s discussion of the reactive attitudes. To blame someone, on this account, is to target her with resentment, indignation, or (in the case of self-blame) guilt. Given the connection between these emotions and the demand for regard that is arguably central to morality, the affective account is quite plausible. Recently, however, George Sher has argued that the affective account of blame, as understood both by Strawson himself (...)
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  • A Sketch of a Theory of Moral Blameworthiness.Peter A. Graham - 2014 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 88 (2):388-409.
    In this paper I sketch an account of moral blame and blameworthiness. I begin by clarifying what I take blame to be and explaining how blameworthiness is to be analyzed in terms of it. I then consider different accounts of the conditions of blameworthiness and, in the end, settle on one according to which a person is blameworthy for φ-ing just in case, in φ-ing, she violates one of a particular class of moral requirements governing the attitudes we bear, and (...)
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  • Moral Responsibility, Guilt, and Retributivism.Randolph Clarke - 2016 - The Journal of Ethics 20 (1-3):121-137.
    This paper defends a minimal desert thesis, according to which someone who is blameworthy for something deserves to feel guilty, to the right extent, at the right time, because of her culpability. The sentiment or emotion of guilt includes a thought that one is blameworthy for something as well as an unpleasant affect. Feeling guilty is not a matter of inflicting suffering on oneself, and it need not involve any thought that one deserves to suffer. The desert of a feeling (...)
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  • Dealing with the Past: Responsibility and Personal History.Kyla Ebels-Duggan - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 164 (1):141-161.
    I argue that unfortunate formative circumstances do not undermine the warrant for either responsibility or blame. I then diagnose the tendency to think that formative circumstances do matter in this way, arguing that knowledge of these circumstances can play an essential epistemic role in our interpersonal interactions.
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  • The Nature and Ethics of Blame.D. Justin Coates & Neal A. Tognazzini - 2012 - Philosophy Compass 7 (3):197-207.
    Blame is usually discussed in the context of the free will problem, but recently moral philosophers have begun to examine it on its own terms. If, as many suppose, free will is to be understood as the control relevant to moral responsibility, and moral responsibility is to be understood in terms of whether blame is appropriate, then an independent inquiry into the nature and ethics of blame will be essential to solving (and, perhaps, even fully understanding) the free will problem. (...)
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  • The Eye's Mind: Perceptual Process and Epistemic Norms.Jessie Munton - 2017 - Philosophical Perspectives 31 (1):317-347.
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  • Compatibilism and Moral Claimancy: An Intermediate Path to Appropriate Blame.Seth Shabo - 2012 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 84 (1):158-186.
    In this paper, I explore a new approach to the problem of determinism and moral responsibility. This approach involves asking when someone has a compelling claim to exemption against other members of the moral community. I argue that it is sometimes fair to reject such claims, even when the agent doesn’t deserve, in the sense of basic desert, to be blamed for her conduct. In particular, when an agent’s conduct reveals that her commitment to comply with the standards of the (...)
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  • The Physiognomy of Responsibility.John Martin Fischer & Neal A. Tognazzini - 2011 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 82 (2):381-417.
    Our aim in this paper is to put the concept of moral responsibility under a microscope. At the lowest level of magnification, it appears unified. But Gary Watson has taught us that if we zoom in, we will find that moral responsibility has two faces: attributability and accountability. Or, to describe the two faces in different terms, there is a difference between being responsible and holding responsible. It is one thing to talk about the connection the agent has with her (...)
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  • Two Faces of Desert.Matt King - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 169 (3):401-424.
    There are two broadly competing pictures of moral responsibility. On the view I favor, to be responsible for some action is to be related to it in such a way that licenses attributing certain properties to the agent, properties like blameworthiness and praiseworthiness. Responsibility is attributability. A different view understands being responsible in terms of our practices of holding each other responsible. Responsibility is accountability, which “involves a social setting in which we demand (require) certain conduct from one another and (...)
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  • Cruel Jokes and Normative Competence.David Shoemaker - 2018 - Social Philosophy and Policy 35 (1):173-195.
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  • Beyond Belief: Toward a Theory of the Reactive Attitudes.Elisa A. Hurley & Coleen Macnamara - 2010 - Philosophical Papers 39 (3):373-399.
    Most moral theorists agree that it is one thing to believe that someone has slighted you and another to resent her for the insult; one thing to believe that someone did you a favor and another to feel gratitude toward her for her kindness. While all of these ways of responding to another's conduct are forms of moral appraisal, the reactive attitudes are said to 'go beyond' beliefs in some way. We think this claim is adequately explained only when we (...)
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  • Character, Blameworthiness, and Blame: Comments on George Sher’s In Praise of Blame.Angela M. Smith - 2008 - Philosophical Studies 137 (1):31-39.
    In his recent book, In Praise of Blame, George Sher argues (among other things) that a bad act can reflect negatively on a person if that act results in an appropriate way from that person's "character," and defends a novel "two-tiered" account of what it is to blame someone. In these brief comments, I raise some questions and doubts about each of these aspects of his rich and thought-provoking account.
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  • Luck’s Mischief and the Prescriptive Burden.Kelly McCormick - 2017 - Criminal Justice Ethics 36 (3):297-313.
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  • Moral Competence, Moral Blame, and Protest.Matthew Talbert - 2012 - The Journal of Ethics 16 (1):89-109.
    I argue that wrongdoers may be open to moral blame even if they lacked the capacity to respond to the moral considerations that counted against their behavior. My initial argument turns on the suggestion that even an agent who cannot respond to specific moral considerations may still guide her behavior by her judgments about reasons. I argue that this explanation of a wrongdoer’s behavior can qualify her for blame even if her capacity for moral understanding is impaired. A second argument (...)
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  • Psychopathy and Responsibility Theory.Paul Litton - 2010 - Philosophy Compass 5 (8):676-688.
    Psychopathy presents a difficult challenge to moral and criminal responsibility theorists. Persons with the disorder have an impaired capacity for empathy and other moral emotions, and fail to feel the force of moral considerations. They have some rational impairments, but they reason adequately to manipulate, con, and exploit their victims, and otherwise to engage successfully in antisocial behavior. Is it appropriate to hold them morally responsible for their wrongdoing? Should the law hold psychopaths criminally responsible? This essay discusses philosophical debates (...)
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