Southwest Philosophy Review

Volume 37, Issue 2, July 2021

Nicholas Sars
Pages 187-202

Retrospective Attitudes and Non-Identity

Many philosophers think the non-identity problem undermines the ability for future generations to have been wronged by past ones. This problem has prompted a number of responses, some of which purport to vindicate the relevant claims of wrongdoing. However, I argue that a closely related issue remains even for those convinced by these responses. It is commonly thought that wrongdoing makes certain retrospective attitudes, such as resentment, fitting toward the wrongdoer. In this paper, I shift a familiar problem of future generations from wrongdoing to the fittingness of retrospective attitudes, and I show that a narrative sense of identity provides one means of addressing the puzzle of how these attitudes can be fi tting in non-identity cases.

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