An Ebola-Like Microbe and The Limits of Kind-Based Goodness

Philosophia 50 (2):451-471 (2022)
  Copy   BIBTEX


Aristotelian theory, as found in Michael Thompson and Philippa Foot, claims that to be good is to be good as a member of that kind. Moreover, Foot argues in effect that goodness admits of only the kind-based sort, obtaining solely in virtue of something’s satisfying kind-based standards. However, I contend that something can satisfy kind-relative standards but nonetheless be bad—I propose a hypothetical Ebola-like microbe that meets its kind-standards of being destructive for its own sake, but it would plausibly be bad for doing so. In defending my counterexample, I respond to the Aristotelian contention that evaluations should only be made from “within” the standpoint of a particular lifeform conception, rather than an “external” one from which that kind itself can be judged to be bad.

Author's Profile

Berman Chan
Lanzhou University


Added to PP

408 (#42,471)

6 months
138 (#26,300)

Historical graph of downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks on external links on PhilPapers.
How can I increase my downloads?