Challenging traditional philosophical views of moral responsibility, Eugene Schlossberger argues that we are responsible not so much for what we do as for who we are. He explores what it means to be a person, concluding that personhood is the sum of beliefs and values which are by no means entirely within our control. Consequently, the voluntariness of our acts or even whether we act at all is irrelevant to the moral evaluation of us as persons. Schlossberger contends that we are to be judged morally on the basis of what we are, our "world-view," rather than what we do. In "Moral Responsibility and Persons", Schlossberger disputes various received philosophical positions. His challenging and entertaining account also examines psychology and its view of the nature of personhood, as well as insanity and the "personality" of animals, children, and computers. He explores the validity of emotions we may feel in response to others especially gratitude and resentment. And finally, Schlossberger tackles the inevitable implications of his position in the area of crime and punishment. Eugene Schlossberger is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Purdue University, Calumet.
Eugene Schlossberger is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Purdue University, Calumet.
Acknowledgments 1. Approaching Responsibility Overview Problems with the Traditional View 2. Personhood The General Concept of a Person Moral Personhood Problems of Personal Identity Concluding Remarks 3. A Theory of Responsibility Defining Responsibility An Account of Responsibility Hume and Motives Objections 4. Determinism Mental Derangement Mitigating Circumstances and Duress Inability and Choice Mind Tampering Summary 5. Punishment and Personal Emotions Punishment and Retribution A Theory of Retribution Gratitude and Resentment Appendixes A. A Variant of PAP B. Object-Stages C. Perry on Personal Identity D. Van Inwagen's Argument E. The Nature of Emotions F. George Sher on Desert Notes Index
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