Virtue Ethics

Edited by Jason Kawall (Colgate University)
About this topic
Key works The essential work inspiring much of the virtue ethics tradition is Aristotle & Ostwald 1962.  Many consider David Hume 1751 and Adam Smith 1759) to provide important, sentimentalist virtue ethics in the early modern period.  Contemporary interest in virtue ethics is often traced to Elizabeth Anscombe's [Anscombe 1958: Modern Moral Philosophy 1958.  In the following decades key contemporary works appeared including Foot 1978, Pincoffs 1971, w#, Hursthouse, Slote, Swanton
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  1. The Right to Do Wrong: Morality and the Limits of Law, by Mark Osiel. [REVIEW]Daniel Muñoz - forthcoming - Criminal Law and Philosophy.
    It's a good book. Ethicists would like the main parts.
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  2. How Might Stoic Virtue Ethics Inform Sustainable Clothing Choices?Kai Whiting, Edward Simpson, Angeles Carrasco, Aldo Dinucci & Leonidas Konstantakos - forthcoming - Ethics, Policy and Environment.
    This paper explores sustainable fashion choices from a Stoic philosophical perspective. Ancient Stoic teachings can help us reexamine our relationship with clothes in the 21st century and provide d...
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  3. Positive Feelings on the Border Between Phenomenology, Psychology, and Virtue Ethics.Guccinelli Roberta Iocco Gemmo - 2020 - Metodo. International Studies in Phenomenology and Philosophy 8 (2):7-28.
    The papers collected in this issue address different topics at play in the contemporary debate on positive feeling and emotion by virtue of both their primary function in everyday life and their embedded structure. Within this issue, specific attention has been given to the intertwining of positive feeling and ethical issues according to different approaches whose goals consist in providing a description and clarification of the phenomena in question. The contributions gathered here give us a clear idea of the variety (...)
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  4. The Potential of Virtue Ethics in Ethical Education in Slovakia.Barbora Baďurová - 2018 - Metodicki Ogledi 25 (2):67-84.
    Etika vrlina pristup je normativne etike koji naglašava izvrsne karakterne osobine moralnih subjekata. Značajan broj autora ističe da ovaj pristup ima veliki potencijal u suvremenom etičkom obrazovanju. Rad se usmjerava na mogućnost uporabe etike vrlina u etičkom obrazovanju u Slovačkoj. Jedan od najznačajnijih autora u razvoju ove teme je Ladislav Lenz koji je napisao i ključne tekstove za nastavnike o etičkom obrazovanju. Njegov se koncept temelji na pedagoškim i psihologijskim osnovama, a inspiriran je konceptom prosocijalnosti španjolskog psihologa R. R. Olivara. (...)
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  5. Applying Aristotelian and Confucian Virtue Ethics to Humane Work in the Business Context.Daryl Koehn - 2022 - Humanistic Management Journal 7 (2):189-209.
    What is humane work? What does such work look like in a business context? This paper articulates two ways of thinking about humane work using an Aristotelian and a Confucian virtue ethics approach. This approach reveals the need to think about (1) work’s connection not merely with autonomy but with self-refinement and self-perfection, with craft, and with the production of genuinely good goods; (2) possible dangers (e.g., the risk of generating envy) of focusing too much on pay issues in connection (...)
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  6. Variations in Virtue Phenomenology.Sabrina Little - forthcoming - Journal of Value Inquiry.
    The virtue development literature often draws on the language of goal-directed automaticity and flow states in discussions of virtue. This article examines the attentional features of various virtues and argues that only some virtuous actions can be adequately described in these terms. It proposes a distinction between three kinds of virtuous actions—flow state actions, deliberative actions, and presence actions—which have varying attentional features, bodily reliance, and conscious reasoning in virtue performance. Then the article motivates these distinctions as important, describing how (...)
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  7. Perfecting Agents.Luke Henderson - forthcoming - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion:1-23.
    The focus of this paper is the process of perfecting agents. There are two views that attempt to explain what perfecting an agent looks like, specifically in the context of temporal requirements. One view claims that it is part of Christian orthodoxy that those destined for heaven will be instantaneously changed upon death from imperfect agents to perfect ones. The other view says that it’s impossible to perform an instantaneous change if the agent wants to maintain their personal identity; an (...)
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  8. A Personalist Approach to Business Ethics: New Perspectives for Virtue Ethics and Servant Leadership.Germán Scalzo, Kleio Akrivou & Manuel Joaquín Fernández González - forthcoming - Business Ethics, the Environment and Responsibility.
    Business Ethics, the Environment &Responsibility, EarlyView.
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  9. A Personalist Approach to Business Ethics: New Perspectives for Virtue Ethics and Servant Leadership.Germán Scalzo, Kleio Akrivou & Manuel Joaquín Fernández González - forthcoming - Business Ethics, the Environment and Responsibility.
    Business Ethics, the Environment &Responsibility, EarlyView.
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  10. Attentional Moral Perception.Jonna Vance & Preston J. Werner - 2022 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 19 (5):501-525.
    Moral perceptualism is the view that perceptual experience is attuned to pick up on moral features in our environment, just as it is attuned to pick up on mundane features of an environment like textures, shapes, colors, pitches, and timbres. One important family of views that incorporate moral perception are those of virtue theorists and sensibility theorists. On these views, one central ability of the virtuous agent is her sensitivity to morally relevant features of situations, where this sensitivity is often (...)
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  11. An Exploration of Mencius’ Ethical Thought From the Perspective of Virtue Ethics.锦明 郭 - 2022 - Advances in Philosophy 11 (5):1197-1201.
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  12. Eric J. Silverman, The Supremacy of Love: An Agape-Centered Vision of Aristotelian Virtue Ethics, (Lanham: Lexington Books, 2019), 165 Pages. ISBN: 978-1-7936-0883-3. Hardback: $90.00. [REVIEW]David J. Rodriguez - 2022 - Journal of Value Inquiry 56 (4):687-692.
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  13. Target Centred Virtue Ethics.Christine Swanton - 2021 - Oxford University Press.
    Christine Swanton presents a new target centred virtue ethics, which is opposed to orthodox virtue ethics in two major ways. She rejects the 'natural goodness' metaphysics of neo-Aristotelian virtue ethics in favour of a 'hermeneutic ontology' of ethics, and she offers a new target centred framework for assessing rightness of acts.
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  14. Sison, Alejo José G., Happiness and Virtue Ethics in Business. The Ultimate Value Proposition, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2015, 317 Pp. [REVIEW]Germán Scalzo - 2015 - Anuario Filosófico:611-614.
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  15. Arete in Plato and Aristotle.Ryan M. Brown & Jay R. Elliott (eds.) - 2022 - Sioux City: Parnassos Press.
    For Plato and Aristotle, arete (traditionally translated as "virtue") was the essential object of human admiration and striving, and even the key to happiness. Their work continues to inspire reflection on fundamental questions of ethics and politics today, as the fourteen new essays collected here demonstrate. -/- Contributors: Lidia Palumbo, Eva Anagnostou-Laoutides, Ryan M. Brown, Jay R. Elliott, Guilherme Domingues da Motta, Federico Casella, Jonathan A. Buttaci, George Harvey, Mark Ralkowski, Gary S. Beck, Paula Gottlieb, Giulio di Basilio, Audrey L. (...)
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  16. Vicious Trauma: Race, Bodies and the Confounding of Virtue Ethics.M. Therese Lysaught & Cory D. Mitchell - 2022 - Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics 42 (1):75-100.
    This essay asks: How do the realities of embodied trauma inflicted by racism interface with virtue theory? This question illuminates two lacunae in virtue theory. The first is attention to race. We argue that the contemporary academic virtue literature performs largely as a White space, failing to address virtue theory’s role in the social construction of race, ignoring the rich and vibrant resources on virtue ethics alive within the Black theological tradition that long antedates Alasdair MacIntyre’s After Virtue, and segregating (...)
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  17. BOSCH, MAGDALENA (ED.), Desire and Human Flourishing. Perspectives From Positive Psychology, Moral Education and Virtue Ethics, Springer, Cham, 2020, 451 Pp. [REVIEW]Gonzalo Alonso-Bastarreche - 2021 - Anuario Filosófico 54 (3):627-630.
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  18. Jewish Virtue Ethics.Geoffrey D. Claussen, Alexander Green & Alan Mittleman (eds.) - 2023 - Albany: State University of New York Press.
    Expands the horizons of Jewish virtue ethics, demonstrating how central virtue has been to the history of Jewish ethics.
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  19. Lẹ́ẹ̀rí as Omọlúàbí: The Interface of Epistemic Justification and Virtue Ethics in an African Culture.Abosede Priscilla Ipadeola - 2023 - In Peter Aloysius Ikhane & Isaac E. Ukpokolo (eds.), African Epistemology: Essays on Being and Knowledge. Routledge.
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  20. Beyond Virtue Ethics: A Contemporary Ethic of Godward Spiritual Struggles.Stephen M. Meawad - 2023 - Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press.
    This book develops a contemporary model of spiritual struggle aimed at perpetual ascent to and in God. Spiritual struggle in this project, which ultimately shifts the emphasis from virtue's acquisition to its pursuit, is defined as the exertion of effort in all conceivable dimensions-physical, emotional, psychological, intellectual, and spiritual-with intent to attain a semblance of, knowledge of, and intimacy with Jesus Christ in community, for God and for others. Gregory of Nyssa's theory of epektasis assumes a basic three-tiered conception of (...)
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  21. Virtue Ethics and the Trolley Problem.Liezl van Zyl - 2022 - In Hallvard Lillehammer (ed.), The Trolley Problem. Cambridge University Press.
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  22. Harry Potter as Philosophy: Five Types of Friendship.James M. Okapal - 2020 - The Palgrave Handbook of Popular Culture as Philosophy.
    The Harry Potter Cinematic Universe is a fertile ground for philosophical cultivation. In this essay, the films are used to explain and expand upon Aristotle’s theory of friendship. Aristotle’s theory identifies three types of friendship: friendships for virtue, pleasure, and utility. The Harry Potter films, however, suggest a modification of this view to allow for five types of friendships. Throughout the series we see that friendships for pleasure and utility come in both beneficent and maleficent forms. A key element in (...)
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  23. A Comparative Theological Approach to Virtue Ethics: Making Space for an African Perspective.SimonMary Asese Aihiokhai - 2022 - Filosofia Theoretica: Journal of African Philosophy, Culture and Religions 11 (2):1-12.
    The twenty-first century world has radically been defined by multiple crises, including wars and grandiose exploitation of the poor by those with political and economic power. To address these crises, one must turn to virtuous life notions. In doing this, society has to learn from different religious and cultural wisdom. Consequently, a case is being made in this work that African ethical thoughts can enrich Christian notions of the virtuous life. African philosophical and cultural notions of community are relevant to (...)
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  24. Educating for Restraint.Peter Olsthoorn - 2022 - In Eric-Hans Kramer & Tine Molendijk (eds.), Violence in Extreme Conditions: Ethical Challenges in Military Practice. Springer. pp. 95-104.
    The legitimate use of force is what separates the military profession from almost all other professions. It is also what makes the ethical challenges for military personnel all the more testing, and underlines the importance of military ethics education in preventing military personnel from crossing the thin line between legitimate force and unlawful violence. Many militaries see a virtue-based approach to teaching military ethics as a necessary complement to rules imposed from above in their effort to ensure that military personnel (...)
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  25. Emotional Intelligence Meets Virtue Ethics: Implications for Educators.Tom Culham & Heeson Bai - 2011 - Journal of Thought 46 (3-4):25.
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  26. Four Challenges to Confucian Virtue Ethics in Technology.Morten Bay - 2021 - Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society 19 (3):358-373.
    Purpose As interest in technology ethics is increasing, so is the interest in bringing schools of ethics from non-Western philosophical traditions to the field, particularly when it comes to information and communication technology. In light of this development and recent publications that result from it, this paper aims to present responds critically to recent work on Confucian virtue ethics and technology. Design/methodology/approach Four critiques are presented as theoretical challenges to CVE in technology, claiming that current literature insufficiently addresses: overall applicability, (...)
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  27. Virtue Ethics, Situationism and Casuistry: Toward a Digital Ethics Beyond Exemplars.Bastiaan Vanacker - 2021 - Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society 19 (3):345-357.
    Purpose This paper aims to propose an ethical approach best suited to dealing with the issues of digital ethics in general and internet research ethics in particular. Design/methodology/approach This article engages with the existing literature on virtue ethics, situationism and digital ethics. Findings A virtue-based casuistic method could be well-suited to deal with issues relating to digital ethics in general and internet research ethics in particular as long as it can take place in communities with shared practices and traditions. Originality/value (...)
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  28. AI and society: a virtue ethics approach.Mirko Farina, Petr Zhdanov, Artur Karimov & Andrea Lavazza - forthcoming - AI and Society:1-14.
    Advances in artificial intelligence and robotics stand to change many aspects of our lives, including our values. If trends continue as expected, many industries will undergo automation in the near future, calling into question whether we can still value the sense of identity and security our occupations once provided us with. Likewise, the advent of social robots driven by AI, appears to be shifting the meaning of numerous, long-standing values associated with interpersonal relationships, like friendship. Furthermore, powerful actors’ and institutions’ (...)
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  29. Eudaimonia, Virtue Ethics and Moral Community.Kalpita Bhar Paul - 2022 - Environmental Values 31 (5):505-514.
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  30. A Model for a Practiced, Global, Liberatory Virtue Ethics Curriculum.Evan Dutmer - 2022 - Teaching Ethics 22 (1):39-67.
    Many introductory courses in ethics stress competence in ethical theories popular in modern Western, Anglophone philosophy. This is limiting to ethics students in two ways: 1) it privileges theory over practice in the area of philosophy that has the most intuitive practical importance and application and 2) it privileges modern Western ethical theory at the expense of philosophical and practical engagement with all other world ethical systems. This essay seeks to provide a pedagogical corrective for both of these trends in (...)
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  31. The Transition Within Virtue Ethics in the Context of Benevolence.Prasasti Pandit - 2022 - Philosophia: International Journal of Philosophy 23 (1):135-151.
    This paper explores the value of benevolence as a cardinal virtue by analyzing the evolving history of virtue ethics from ancient Greek tradition to emotivism and contemporary thoughts. First, I would like to start with a brief idea of virtue ethics. Greek virtue theorists recognize four qualities of moral character, namely, wisdom, temperance, courage, and justice. Christianity recognizes unconditional love as the essence of its theology. Here I will analyze the transition within the doctrine of virtue ethics in the Christian (...)
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  32. A Comparative Theological Approach to Virtue Ethics.SimonMary Asese Aihiokhai - 2022 - Filosofia Theoretica 11 (2):1-12.
    The twenty-first century world has radically been defined by multiple crises, including wars and grandiose exploitation of the poor by those with political and economic power. To address these crises, one must turn to virtuous life notions. In doing this, society has to learn from different religious and cultural wisdom. Consequently, a case is being made in this work that African ethical thoughts can enrich Christian notions of the virtuous life. African philosophical and cultural notions of community are relevant to (...)
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  33. Ignorance in Plato’s Protagoras.Wenjin Liu - 2022 - Phronesis 67 (3):309-337.
    Ignorance is commonly assumed to be a lack of knowledge in Plato’s Socratic dialogues. I challenge that assumption. In the Protagoras, ignorance is conceived to be a substantive, structural psychic flaw—the soul’s domination by inferior elements that are by nature fit to be ruled. Ignorant people are characterized by both false beliefs about evaluative matters in specific situations and an enduring deception about their own psychic conditions. On my interpretation, akrasia, moral vices, and epistemic vices are products or forms of (...)
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  34. Playfulness Versus Epistemic Traps.C. Thi Nguyen - 2022 - In Mark Alfano, Colin Klein & Jeroen de Ridder (eds.), Social Virtue Epistemology. Routledge.
    What is the value of intellectual playfulness? Traditional characterizations of the ideal thinker often leave out playfulness; the ideal inquirer is supposed to be sober, careful, and conscientiousness. But elsewhere we find another ideal: the laughing sage, the playful thinker. These are models of intellectual playfulness. Intellectual playfulness, I suggest, is the disposition to try out alternate belief systems for fun – to try on radically different perspectives for the sheer pleasure of it. But what would the cog-nitive value be (...)
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  35. Moral Enhancement, Acquired Virtue, and Theism: A Response to Brummett and Crutchfield.Nicholas Colgrove, Derek McAllister & Burke Rea - 2022 - Bioethics 1 (Online First):1-8.
    Recently, Brummett and Crutchfield advanced two critiques of theists who object to moral enhancement. First, a conceptual critique: theists who oppose moral enhancement commonly do so because virtue is thought to be acquired only via a special kind of process. Enhancement does not involve such processes. Hence, enhancement cannot produce virtue. Yet theists also commonly claim that God is perfectly virtuous and not subject to processes. If virtue requires a process and God is perfectly virtuous without a process, however, then (...)
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  36. Holly, Marilyn, "Environmental Virtue Ethics A Review of Some Current Work: Newton, Lisa (2002). Ethics and Sustai.Marilyn Holly - forthcoming - Ethics and Sustainability: Sustainable Development and the Moral Life.
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  37. Environmental Virtue Ethics.Ronald Sandler - 2013 - In The International Encyclopedia of Ethics. Hoboken, New Jersey: Blackwell Publishing. pp. 1665–1674.
    Environmental ethics is the study of the ethical relationships between human beings and the natural environment, including the nonhuman individuals that populate and constitute it. It involves developing a proper understanding of the human–nature relationship, identifying the goods and values that are part of or emerge from that relationship, determining the norms that those goods and values justify, and applying those norms to generate guidance on environmental issues and interactions. Environmental virtue ethics is that part of environmental ethics that concerns (...)
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  38. How Should We Respond to Climate Change? Virtue Ethics and Aggregation Problems.Dominic Lenzi - forthcoming - Journal of Social Philosophy.
    Journal of Social Philosophy, EarlyView.
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  39. Virtue Ethics and Moore's Criticisms of Naturalism.Brandon Thomas Byrd - unknown
    Several contemporary virtue ethicists have provided systematic presentations of normative virtue ethics. The virtue ethical literature, however, does not contain much information on the meta-ethical roots of virtue theories. The present paper seeks to address this deficiency by examining the neo-Aristotelianism of Rosalind Hursthouse in an effort to ascertain what meta-ethical commitments are most consistent with her theory; these commitments are shown to be cognitivism, objectivism, and naturalism. These positions are then put into dialogue with Moore’s seminal metaethical arguments against (...)
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  40. The Promise and Limits of Natural Normativity in a Neo-Aristotelian Virtue Ethics.Timothy J. Clewell - unknown
    In this thesis I distinguish between two conceptions of naturalism that have been offered as possible starting points for a virtue based ethics. The first version of naturalism is characterized by Philippa Foot’s project in Natural Goodness. The second version of naturalism can be found, in various forms, among the works of John McDowell, Martha Nussbaum, and Rosalind Hursthouse. I argue that neither naturalistic approach is entirely successful on its own, but that we can fruitfully carve a path between both (...)
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  41. Hartman's Quandary: Reconciling Pluralism and Realism for Virtue Ethics in Business.Nisigandha Bhuyan & Arunima Chakraborty - forthcoming - Business Ethics, the Environment and Responsibility.
    Business Ethics, the Environment &Responsibility, EarlyView.
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  42. Virtue Ethics, Bioethics, and the Ownership of Biological Material.Barbro Björkman - 2008 - Dissertation, Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm
    The overall aim of this thesis is to show how some ideas in Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics can be interpreted and used as a productive way to approach a number of pressing issues in bioethics. Articles I-II introduce, and endorse, a social constructivist perspective on rights. It is investigated if the existence of property-like rights to biological material would include the moral right to commodification and even commercialisation. Articles III-V discuss similar questions and more specifically champion the application of an Aristotelian (...)
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  43. A Taste of Armageddon: A Virtue Ethics Perspective on Autonomous Weapons and Moral Injury.Massimiliano Lorenzo Cappuccio, Jai Christian Galliott & Fady Shibata Alnajjar - 2022 - Journal of Military Ethics 21 (1):19-38.
    Autonomous weapon systems could in principle release military personnel from the onus of killing during combat missions, reducing the related risk of suffering a moral injury and its debilita...
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  44. Philosophical Foundations for the Study of Wisdom.Jason Swartwood - 2022 - In Robert Sternberg and Judith Glück (ed.), The Psychology of Wisdom: An Introduction. pp. 15 - 34.
    A person with practical wisdom reliably grasps how to live and conduct themselves. But what is practical wisdom, how can we get it, and how can we study it? This chapter will introduce some prominent philosophical arguments and answers to these questions. After distinguishing practical wisdom from other types of wisdom, the chapter explains why studying wisdom requires combining both philosophy and empirical science. To illustrate the contribution of philosophy, the chapter describes a core philosophical conception of wisdom and invites (...)
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  45. Public Health Virtue Ethics.Kathryn MacKay - 2022 - Public Health Ethics 15 (1):1-10.
    This paper proposes that public health is the sort of institution that has a role in producing structures of virtue in society. This proposal builds upon work that describes how virtues are structured by the practices of institutions, at the collective or whole-of-society level. This work seeks to fill a gap in public health ethics when it comes to virtues. Mainstay moral theories tend to incorporate some role for virtues, but within public health ethics this role has not been fully (...)
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  46. Rage Against the Machine: The Virtues of Anger in Response to Oppression.Jennifer Kling - 2020 - In Courtland Lewis & Gregory L. Bock (eds.), The Ethics of Anger. New York, NY, USA: pp. 199-213.
    Oppression makes me angry. So, I am angry almost all of the time, as oppression (of various kinds) is endemic to our socio-political world. However, there is a growing philosophical literature that argues against anger as a necessary, virtuous, or important response to wrongdoing. Martha Nussbaum, in particular, argues that “anger is always normatively problematic, whether in the personal or in the public realm.” It is certainly true that anger can have bad or problematic effects, and it may well be (...)
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  47. Review of Environmental Virtue Ethics. [REVIEW]Patrick R. Frierson - 2006 - Environmental Values 15 (2):258-261.
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  48. Practical Structure and Moral Skill.Joshua Shepherd - 2022 - Philosophical Quarterly 72 (3):713-732.
    I argue that moral skill is limited and precarious. It is limited because global moral skill—the capacity for morally excellent behaviour within an über action domain, such as the domain of living, or of all-things-considered decisions, or the same kind of capacity applied across a superset of more specific action domains—is not to be found in humans. It is precarious because relatively local moral skill, while possible, is prone to misfire. My arguments depend upon the diversity of practical structures confronting (...)
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  49. 16. Kant’s Virtue Ethics.Robert B. Louden - 1997 - In Daniel Statman (ed.), Virtue Ethics: A Critical Reader. Georgetown University Press. pp. 286-299.
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  50. 14. Contemporary Virtue Ethics and Aristotle.Peter Simpson - 1997 - In Daniel Statman (ed.), Virtue Ethics: A Critical Reader. Georgetown University Press. pp. 245-259.
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