Right Act, Virtuous Motive
Metaphilosophy Volume 41, Issue 1-2, Pp. 58 - 72.
By Thomas Hurka
The concepts of virtue and right action
are closely connected, in that we expect people with virtuous motives
to at least often act rightly. Two well-known views explain this
connection by defining one of the concepts in terms of the other.
Instrumentalists about virtue identify virtuous motives as those that
lead to right acts; virtue-ethicists identify right acts as those that
are or would be done from virtuous motives. This essay outlines a rival
explanation, based on the "higher-level" account of virtue defended in
the author's Virtue, Vice, and Value. On this
account rightness and virtue go together because each is defined by a
(different) relation to some other, more basic moral concept. Their
frequent coincidence is therefore like a correlation between A and B
based not on either's causing the other but on their being joint
effects of a single common cause.
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(Something interesting I found)Posted: Wednesday, March 3, 2010