Moral Responsibility and Existential Attitudes

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We might describe the philosophical issue of human freedom and moral responsibility as an existential metaphysical problem. Problems of this kind are not just a matter of theoretical interest and curiosity: They address issues that we care about and that affect us. They are, more specifically, relevant to the significance and value that we attach to our lives and the way that we lead them. According to the orthodox view, there is a tidy connection between skepticism and pessimism. Skepticism threatens a wide range of interests and concerns that themselves rest on the foundation of our self-conception as responsible moral agents. From this perspective, whereas skepticism licenses a degree of pessimism about our human predicament, the defeat of skepticism serves to vindicate optimism. In recent years this orthodox view of the relationship between skepticism and pessimism has been challenged. It has been argued, for example, that skepticism may be defended in much more optimistic terms. While we have reason to accept skepticism, we have no reason to draw any bleak or depressing consequences from this. Another way of severing the orthodox connection between skepticism and pessimism is to reject skepticism but deny that this will serve to secure or salvage any unqualified form of optimism. This chapter reviews and contrasts these various positions and approaches, beginning with an account of P. F. Strawson’s particularly influential statement of the relationship between the skeptical challenge and pessimism.
Titel på värdpublikationThe Oxford Handbook of Moral Responsibility
RedaktörerDana Kay Nelkin, Derk Pereboom
FörlagOxford University Press
Antal sidor25
ISBN (elektroniskt)9780190679330
ISBN (tryckt)9780190679309
StatusPublished - 2022
Externt publiceradJa

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ)

  • Filosofi


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