Dissertation, Stockholm University (2021)

Authors
Nils Sylvan
Stockholm University
Abstract
This dissertation is about the partiality problem for fitting attitude analyses of value. More specifically, it is about whether and how the problem might be resolved. In Chapter 1, I set the stage by offering a short introduction to the topic and a rationale for investigating it. I then give a more detailed account of FA analyses of value in Chapter 2, including a brief outline of their history and appeal, before explaining more thoroughly just what the partiality problem is for such analyses in Chapter 3, where I distinguish between several different versions of the problem, identify two broad strategies for resolving it and put forward six evaluation criteria in terms of which the plausibility of a resolution can be assessed. According to FA analyses of value, what it is for something to have value is, roughly, for it to be fitting to have a certain sort of attitude toward it. To have a positive value, such as being good, is to be something that it is fitting to favor ; to have a negative value, such as being bad, is to be something that it is fitting to disfavor ; and to have a relational or comparative value like being better than, worse than, equally good as or equally bad as something else is to be something that it is fitting to favor more than, disfavor more than, favor equally much as or disfavor equally much as the other thing. The partiality problem is, roughly, that there are situations in which two things seem to have equal value, which, if things are as they seem and FA analyses of value are correct, means that it is fitting to respond to them equally – to be impartial between them. However, in these situations, there are some people for whom it does not seem fitting to respond in that way because they stand in a certain relationship to one of the bearers of value. For these people, it seems that the fitting response is an unequal or partial response, not an impartial one. If such intuitions about fitting partiality and value are veridical, then how can FA analyses of value be correct? The rest of the dissertation is then a critical, in-depth study of a wide range of responses to the partiality problem. In Chapter 4, I examine the first of the two response strategies, which is to deny the veracity of at least one of the intuitions that generate the problem without making any changes to the FA analyses themselves. I then turn to the second strategy, which is to try to accommodate the intuitions by revising the FA analyses in some suitable manner. In Chapters 5–13, I consider the possibility and plausibility of solving the problem by revising the FA analyses on the basis of: the distinction between intrinsic and extrinsic properties, the notion of basic value, the notion of agent-relative value, the notion of an impartial observer, the distinction between moral and non-moral fittingness, a sui generis notion of fittingness, the distinction between pro tanto and overall fittingness, the distinction between actions and attitudes and the notions of evaluative distance and perspective. My assessment is that none of these responses is entirely plausible. Thus, in Chapter 14, I conclude that although the partiality problem may not be irresolvable, it is yet to receive a fully plausible resolution. I also discuss the ramifications of this conclusion.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 69,114
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

What We Owe to Each Other.Thomas Scanlon - 1998 - Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
Reasons and Persons.Derek Parfit - 1984 - Oxford University Press.
Philosophical Explanations.Robert Nozick - 1981 - Harvard University Press.

View all 126 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Parental Partiality and Future Children.Thomas Douglas - 2019 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 15 (1).
Charity and Partiality.Theron Pummer - 2019 - In David Edmonds (ed.), Ethics and the Contemporary World. Abingdon: Routledge. pp. 121-132.
Fitting Attitude Analyses of Value and the Partiality Challenge.Jonas Olson - 2009 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 12 (4):365-378.
Reasonable Partiality to Domestic Animals.Robert Heeger - 2005 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 8 (1-2):123-139.
Egoism, Partiality, and Impartiality.Brad Hooker - 2013 - In Roger Crisp (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of the History of Ethics. Oxford University Press. pp. 710-728.
Scope Restrictions, National Partiality, and War.Jeremy Davis - 2021 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 20 (2).
The Justification of National Partiality.Thomas Hurka - 1997 - In Jeff McMahan & Robert McKim (eds.), The Morality of Nationalism. New York, USA: Oxford Unversity Press. pp. 139-57.
Friendship Without Partiality?Troy Jollimore - 2000 - Ratio 13 (1):69–82.
Fittingness and Idealization.Antti Kauppinen - 2014 - Ethics 124 (3):572-588.
Fittingness First.Conor McHugh & Jonathan Way - 2016 - Ethics 126 (3):575-606.
Fittingness, Value and Trans-World Attitudes.Andrew E. Reisner - 2015 - Philosophical Quarterly (260):1-22.
Evidence Thresholds and the Partiality of Relational Faith.Finlay Malcolm - forthcoming - Australasian Philosophical Review.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2021-12-15

Total views
7 ( #1,064,000 of 2,499,056 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
7 ( #101,998 of 2,499,056 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes