Voluntariness, Praiseworthiness, and Character

Susan Sauvé Meyer

in Aristotle on Moral Responsibility

Published in print November 2011 | ISBN: 9780199697427
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191732072 | DOI:
Voluntariness, Praiseworthiness, and Character

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This chapter considers Aristotle's own explanation of why he includes a discussion of voluntariness in his discussion of moral character. The connection he sees between voluntariness and the praiseworthiness and blameworthiness of states of character gives us reason to suppose that the account of voluntariness is intended to capture conditions of moral responsibility for action. He thinks we are morally responsible for those actions and feelings produced by our states of moral character. The account of praiseworthiness on which he relies, however, fails to endorse a common modern assumption about moral responsibility — the view that one's praiseworthiness or blameworthiness for action requires responsibility for the states of character from which one acts.

Keywords: Aristotle; moral character; blameworthiness; moral responsibility

Chapter.  9561 words. 

Subjects: Ancient Philosophy

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