Chapter

Discerning the Particulars

Nancy Sherman

in The Fabric of Character

Published in print March 1991 | ISBN: 9780198239178
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191598395 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0198239173.003.0002

Series: Clarendon Paperbacks

 Discerning the Particulars

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Here I consider the way in which practical reason involves a discrimination of salience. My concern is thus with practical reason as a kind of perception and sensitivity to changing particulars. I first introduce the issue in the context of Aristotle's discussion of equity (epieikeia) and flexible and fair judgement of cases in the law. I then extend the discussion by considering what Aristotle might regard as lacking in a Kantian account of moral choice that emphasizes universalizability. From here I turn to Aristotle's substantive account, and his view of perception as both an affective and cognitive capacity.

Keywords: Aristotle; discernment; emotional sensitivity; equity; practical reason; right reason

Chapter.  17606 words. 

Subjects: Ancient Philosophy

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