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Displaying: 1-6 of 6 documents

1. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Michael Beaty Paideia: Moral Education in the University?
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Does the title of the World Congress of Philosophy, Paideia: Philosophy Educating Humanity, reflect hubris, irony or a pragmatic optimism? How is it possible for philosophy to educate the human community in the twenty-first century? More specifically, at a time when few people besides academic philosophers read philosophy, in what sense can philosophy educate humanity? In this essay I examine one possible way philosophy can educate humanity advanced by Derek Bok, former president of Harvard University. In a variety of public lectures, published essays and books Bok insists that America's leading colleges and universities ought to recommit themselves to moral education as one of their central tasks. I argue that recommitment to this task on the part of these elite universities is far more difficult than Bok admits. Indeed, I contend that as long as America's elite educational institutions retain the intellectual and structural commitments that displaced paideia, Bok's vision for moral education has little chance of success.
2. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
David Conway Nietzsche’s Revaluation of Schopenhauer as Educator
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On the basis of his metaphysics, Schopenhauer was led to advocate quietism and resignation as attitudes toward life. In the course of his career, Nietzsche reversed his estimation of Schopenhauer from initial agreement to final excoriation. In what follows, I examine and assess the grounds on which Nietzsche revised his opinion of Schopenhauer as educator of humanity. I argue that three fundamental issues divide Nietzsche and Schopenhauer. The first concerns the eliminability of human suffering. The second regards the value of sympathy to those who feel rather than are recipients of this sentiment. The third is the value of cultivating indifference to the suffering of others. Schopenhauer considers suffering as inextricably bound up with human existence, whereas Nietzsche views suffering as a sign of weakness that is ultimately eliminable from human existence. Schopenhauer assumed that sympathy and compassion have a benign effect upon those who experience these emotions; Nietzsche maintains they have the opposite effect. Contra Nietzsche, Schopenhauer deplores the cultivation of indifference towards the suffering of others. I defend Schopenhauer against Nietzsche on all three issues, though I argue that Schopenhauer exaggerates the ubiquity of human suffering and hence the need and desirability of the cultivation of self-denial.
3. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
L. Hughes Cox Aristotle’s Ordinary versus Kant’s Revisionist De nition of Virtue as Habit
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In what follows I examine the following question: does it make a difference in moral psychology whether one adopts Aristotle's ordinary or Kant's revisionist definition of virtue as habit? Points of commensurability and critical comparison are provided by Kant's attempt to refute Aristotle's definition of virtue as a mean and by the moral problems of ignorance (I don't know what I ought to do) and weakness (I don't do what I know I ought to do). These two problems are essential topics for moral psychology. I show two things. First, Kant's definition is revisionist because he excludes from moral habit-formation what Aristotle includes, that is, (i) practice in prudential calculation of a mean, and (ii) habit-formation by repetition. This follows from Kant's insistence that an act is virtuous only if the moral agent is willing freely and universally. Secondly, Aristotle's virtues modify behavior directly, whereas Kant's virtues modify behavior indirectly by creating moral feeling which, in turn, represses the temptations of the natural inclination. I suggest, thirdly, that as one approximates Kant's ideal of perfect virtue, entailed by the broad duties of beneficence and self-perfection, the difference in kind invented by Kant between virtue and prudence, as a morally neutral rational skill, erodes and becomes a difference in degree. I conclude that Aristotle's ordinary definition of virtue is better able to modify human behavior and solve these two moral problems.
4. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Juha Räikkä Regret and Obligation
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In Albert Camus' 1950 play Just Assassins, terrorists are at work in nineteenth-century Russia. They kill people, and they all believe that there is a superior moral reason for doing so. But they also know that killing is wrong. In their own view, they are innocent criminals; innocent, because their action is justified, but criminals, because they kill. So tacitly they conclude that they deserve punishment that will remove the regret from their shoulders. Their execution, by the same despotic authorities they are attacking, completes their actions: regret, caused by justified killing, gets its counterpart. Regret is an interesting mental phenomenon. Some people say that feeling regret is irrational, or even that it is immoral. But surely the usual opinion is that in some situations regret is an appropriate way to react. An interesting question is what it means to say that sometimes it is 'appropriate' to feel regret. Do we have a moral obligation to feel regret sometimes? How could one have an obligation to feel anything, since, at least seemingly, feelings are not voluntary acts. If we do have a moral obligation to feel regret in some cases, does it follow that all good people are emotionally "hot," while "cool" persons, who are not able to feel deep regret, are bad?
5. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Yvanka Raynova Vernun und Terror: Zur Postmodernen Lektüre von Freud
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Die kritische Auseinandersetzung mit der Freudschen Psychoanalyse, die zuerst von Foucault und dann von Deleuze, Guattari, Lyotard und Baudrillard unternommen wurde, versucht den Mechanismus der 'bürgerlichen Repressiontätigkeit,' die die europäische Menschheit unter dem Joch der Familieninstitution hält, zu enthüllen und den Terror einer erdachten und simulativen Moral, in der Freud und seine Anhänger unwillkürlich einbezogen sind, blob zu stellen. Damit zeigt die postmoderne Lektüre von Freud, dab nur die Befreiung von diesem durch Terror-verderbten Bewubtsein im Stande wäre die wirkliche revolutionäre Kraft der psychoanalytischen Kritik der Vernunft hervorbringen und die Bedeutung ihrer zwei epochalen Erfindungen-die direkte Konfrontation zwischen den Triebproduktionen und der Repression, die die Gesellschaftsmaschine auf der Triebmaschine ausübt, und die dadurch folgende Verdrängung-zurück zu gewinnen.
6. The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
William A. Rottschaefer Moral Learning and Moral Realism: How Empirical Psychology Illuminates Issues in Moral Ontology
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Although scientific naturalistic philosophers have been concerned with the role of scientific psychology in illuminating problems in moral psychology, they have paid less attention to the contributions that it might make to issues of moral ontology. In this paper, I illustrate how findings in moral developmental psychology illuminate and advance the discussion of a long-standing issue in moral ontology, that of moral realism. To do this, I examine Gilbert Harman and Nicholas Sturgeon's discussion of that issue. I contend that their explorations leave the issue unresolved. To break the stalemate, I appeal to empirical psychological findings about moral internalization-the process by which children acquire the capacity to act in terms of moral norms. I contend that these findings illuminate the issue, suggest a way to advance it, and tend to support a moral realist position.