Reid's moral psychology: animal motives as guides to virtue

Canadian Journal of Philosophy 41 (S1):122-141 (2011)
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My aim in this paper is to show that animal motives play an important role in guiding human agents to virtue, according to Reid. Animal motives, for Reid, are constituted of desires and of their objects. These desires are intrinsic desires for objects other than moral or prudential worth. However, from a rational and moral point of view, animal motives are good and useful parts of the human constitution that lead to happiness, teach self-government, create the habit of acting virtuously, and add force to rational motives. Understanding animal motives as guides to virtue provides Reid with the hybrid sentimentalist/rationalist account he seeks to offer.



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Esther Kroeker
University of Antwerp

Citations of this work

Reid's Non-Humean Theory of Moral Motives.Esther Engels Kroeker - 2018 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 99 (S1):205-224.
Reid on Moral Sentimentalism.Camil Golub - 2019 - Res Philosophica 96 (4):431-444.
Reid's Response to Hume's Moral Critique of Religion.Esther Engels Kroeker - 2016 - Journal of Scottish Philosophy 14 (1):85-100.

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References found in this work

Thomas Reid.Keith Lehrer - 1989 - New York: Routledge.
Thomas Reid on freedom and morality.William L. Rowe - 1991 - Ithaca: Cornell University Press.
Thomas Reid.Keith LEHRER - 1989 - Philosophy 66 (256):252-254.
Manifest activity: Thomas Reid's theory of action.Gideon Yaffe - 2004 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Signs of value: Reid on the evidential role of feelings in moral judgement.Terence Cuneo - 2006 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 14 (1):69 – 91.

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