Vices as Higher-Level Evils

Utilitas 13 (2):195-212 (2001)


This paper sketches an account of the intrinsic goodness of virtue and intrinsic evil of vice that can fit within a consequentialist framework. This treats the virtues and vices as higher-level intrinsic values, ones that consist in, respectively, appropriate and inappropriate attitudes to other, lower-level values. After presenting the main general features of the account, the paper illustrates its strengths by showing how it illuminates a series of particular vices. In the course of doing so, it distinguishes between the categories of what it calls pure vices, vices of indifference, and vices of disproportion, and shows how each category is made vicious by a different general feature of the recursive account

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Thomas Hurka
University of Toronto, St. George Campus

References found in this work

Valuing Emotions.Michael Stocker & Elizabeth Hegeman - 1996 - Philosophy 73 (284):308-311.
Envy and Jealousy: Emotions and Vices.Gabriele Taylor - 1988 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 13 (1):233-249.
Wickedness: A Philosophical Essay.Mary Midgley & Ronald D. Milo - 1986 - Philosophy 61 (236):269-272.

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Citations of this work

Prankster's Ethics.Andy Egan & Brian Weatherson - 2004 - Philosophical Perspectives 18 (1):45–52.

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