Is Open‐mindedness a Moral Virtue?

Ratio 30 (3):343-358 (2017)
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Abstract

Is open-mindedness a moral virtue? Surprisingly, this question has not received much attention from philosophers. In this paper, we fill this lacuna by arguing that there are good grounds for thinking that it is. In particular, we show that the extant account of open-mindedness as a moral virtue faces an objection that appears to show that exercising the character trait may not be virtuous. To offset this objection, we argue that a much stronger argument can be made for the case that open-mindedness is a moral virtue by appealing to the notion of moral understanding. Specifically, we provide a new rationale as to why we should exercise open-mindedness and offer several arguments to allay the concern that doing so can at times cause us to be in an epistemically and morally weaker position.

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Author Profiles

Anna Cremaldi
Appalachian State University
Jack M. C. Kwong
Appalachian State University

Citations of this work

Shame and moral autonomy.Jack M. C. Kwong - 2020 - Ratio 34 (1):44-55.
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References found in this work

Openmindedness and truth.J. Adam Carter & Emma C. Gordon - 2014 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 44 (2):207-224.
The structure of open-mindedness.Jason Baehr - 2011 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 41 (2):191-213.
Open‐Mindedness as Engagement.Jack M. C. Kwong - 2016 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 54 (1):70-86.
Open-Mindedness as a Moral Virtue.Nomy Arpaly - 2011 - American Philosophical Quarterly 48 (1):75.
Open-mindedness.Wayne Riggs - 2010 - In Heather Battaly (ed.), Virtue and Vice, Moral and Epistemic. Oxford, UK: Wiley-Blackwell. pp. 173–188.

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