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At least you tried: the value of De Dicto concern to do the right thing


Field, Claire (2022). At least you tried: the value of De Dicto concern to do the right thing. Philosophical Studies, 179(9):2707-2730.

Abstract

I argue that there are some situations in which it is praiseworthy to be motivated only by moral rightness de dicto, even if this results in wrongdoing. I consider a set of cases that are challenging for views that dispute this, prioritising concern for what is morally important (de re, and not de dicto) in moral evaluation (for example, Arpaly, 2003; Arpaly & Schroeder, 2013; Harman 2015; Weatherson, 2019). In these cases, the agent is not concerned about what is morally important (de re), does the wrong thing, but nevertheless seems praiseworthy rather than blameworthy. I argue that the views under discussion cannot accommodate this, and should be amended to recognise that it is often praiseworthy to be motivated to do what is right (de dicto).

Abstract

I argue that there are some situations in which it is praiseworthy to be motivated only by moral rightness de dicto, even if this results in wrongdoing. I consider a set of cases that are challenging for views that dispute this, prioritising concern for what is morally important (de re, and not de dicto) in moral evaluation (for example, Arpaly, 2003; Arpaly & Schroeder, 2013; Harman 2015; Weatherson, 2019). In these cases, the agent is not concerned about what is morally important (de re), does the wrong thing, but nevertheless seems praiseworthy rather than blameworthy. I argue that the views under discussion cannot accommodate this, and should be amended to recognise that it is often praiseworthy to be motivated to do what is right (de dicto).

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Philosophy
Dewey Decimal Classification:100 Philosophy
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > Philosophy
Uncontrolled Keywords:Praiseworthiness, Blameworthiness, Neuroatypicality, Moral responsibility, Moral recklessness, Moral risk
Language:English
Date:1 September 2022
Deposited On:19 Feb 2024 10:09
Last Modified:31 May 2024 01:56
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0031-8116
OA Status:Hybrid
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s11098-022-01791-9
Project Information:
  • : FunderH2020
  • : Grant ID789270
  • : Project TitleRESPONSIBILITY - The Roots of Responsibility: Metaphysics, Humanity, and Society
  • Content: Published Version
  • Language: English
  • Licence: Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)