Chapter

Open‐Mindedness

Jason Baehr

in The Inquiring Mind

Published in print June 2011 | ISBN: 9780199604074
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191729300 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199604074.003.0008
Open‐Mindedness

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The present chapter and the one that follows provide detailed analyses of individual intellectual virtues. This chapter treats open‐mindedness. Initial consideration is given to an account of open‐mindedness according to which it consists primarily of a disposition to set aside one's viewpoint about a particular issue in order to give a fair and impartial hearing to an opposing viewpoint. It is argued that this account, while on the right track, fails to do justice to the fact that open‐mindedness can be manifested in contexts void of rational disagreement and that it need not involve any kind of rational assessment. An alternative conception of open‐mindedness is put forth that accommodates these facts. Finally, it is considered when or toward what persons or beliefs it is intellectually virtuous to exercise open‐mindedness.

Keywords: intellectual virtue; intellectual conflict; open‐mindedness

Chapter.  10478 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

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