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Full-Text Articles in Philosophy

Anthropocentrism As Environmental Ethic, Kyle L. Burchett Jan 2016

Anthropocentrism As Environmental Ethic, Kyle L. Burchett

Theses and Dissertations--Philosophy

Ever since the environment and nonhumanity became major ethical topics, human-centered worldviews have been blamed for all that is morally wrong about our dealings with nature. Those who consider themselves nonanthropocentrists typically assume that the West’s anthropocentric axiologies and ontologies underlie all of the environmental degradations associated with our species. On the other hand, a handful of environmental philosophers argue that anthropocentrism is perfectly acceptable as a foundation for environmental ethics. According to Bryan Norton’s convergence hypothesis, "If reasonably interpreted and translated into appropriate policies, a nonanthropocentric ethic will advocate the same [environmental] policies as a suitably broad ...


The Normative Architecture Of Reality: Towards An Object-Oriented Ethics, Justin L. Harmon Jan 2016

The Normative Architecture Of Reality: Towards An Object-Oriented Ethics, Justin L. Harmon

Theses and Dissertations--Philosophy

The fact-value distinction has structured and still structures ongoing debates in metaethics, and all of the major positions in the field (expressivism, cognitivist realism, and moral error theory) subscribe to it. In contrast, I claim that the fact-value distinction is a contingent product of our intellectual history and a prime object for questioning. The most forceful reason for rejecting the distinction is that it presupposes a problematic understanding of the subject-object divide whereby one tends to view humans as the sole source of normativity in the world. My dissertation aims to disclose the background against which human ethical praxis is ...


Self-Respect And Objectivity: A Critique Of Rawls, Benjamin A. Logan Jan 2016

Self-Respect And Objectivity: A Critique Of Rawls, Benjamin A. Logan

Theses and Dissertations--Philosophy

In A Theory of Justice, John Rawls names two conditions as necessary and sufficient for an agent to have self-respect. I argue that Rawls’s two conditions constitute an inadequate understanding of self-respect. Contrary to Rawls, I argue that self-respect requires moral desert, and that self-respect is a distinct concept from self-esteem.


A Pedagogy For Justice: Kant, Hegel, Marcuse And Freire On Education And The Good Society, Michelle J. Johnson Jan 2016

A Pedagogy For Justice: Kant, Hegel, Marcuse And Freire On Education And The Good Society, Michelle J. Johnson

Theses and Dissertations--Philosophy

Rousseau’s educational treatise Emile is a well-known pedagogical work often noted for its progressive educational insights. Although Kant’s Lectures on Pedagogy is much less well known, Kant suggests a solution to an educational problem Rousseau is unable to solve: the problem of whether or not education can work for the good of humanity. Rousseau is concerned that society, and the schools in society, inflames people’s passions and leads to inequality and enslavement. Rousseau sketches an educational program that ideally develops students’ autonomous moral reasoning untainted by inflamed passion, an education which enables students to be moral and ...


Forget Not The Whip! Nietzsche, Perspectivism, And Feminism: A Non-Apologist Interpretation Of Nietzsche’S Polemical Axiology, Jennifer L. Hudgens Jan 2016

Forget Not The Whip! Nietzsche, Perspectivism, And Feminism: A Non-Apologist Interpretation Of Nietzsche’S Polemical Axiology, Jennifer L. Hudgens

Theses and Dissertations--Philosophy

The nineteenth-century German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche is notoriously a misogynist according to many feminists. In parallel, Nietzsche’s theory of value, perspectivism, is relativist according to many philosophers. However, I propose a counter-reading of both Nietzsche’s comments regarding women and his comments regarding perspective in which I interpret Nietzsche as neither misogynistic nor relativistic. I adopt a stance which is non-apologist, in that I do not merely wash my hands of Nietzsche’s apparently sexist remarks about women as Walter Kaufmann does, for example. Rather I demonstrate that Nietzsche is performing a polemical attack on a particular kind of ...


Imagination Bound: A Theoretical Imperative, Robert Michael Guerin Jan 2016

Imagination Bound: A Theoretical Imperative, Robert Michael Guerin

Theses and Dissertations--Philosophy

Kant’s theory of productive imagination falls at the center of the critical project. This is evident in the 1781 Critique of Pure Reason, where Kant claims that the productive imagination is a “fundamental faculty of the human soul” and indispensable for the construction of experience. And yet, in the second edition of 1787 Kant seemingly demotes this imagination as a mere “effect of the understanding on sensibility” and all but withdraws its place from the Transcendental Deduction.

In his 1929 Kant and the Problem of Metaphysics, Martin Heidegger provided an explanation for the revisions between 1781 and 1787. Heidegger ...


Becoming What We Are: Virtue And Practical Wisdom As Natural Ends, Keith Buhler Jan 2016

Becoming What We Are: Virtue And Practical Wisdom As Natural Ends, Keith Buhler

Theses and Dissertations--Philosophy

This dissertation is about ethical naturalism. Philippa Foot and John McDowell both defend contemporary neo-Aristotelian ethics but each represents a rival expression of the same. They are united in the affirmation that virtue is ‘natural goodness’ for human beings. Nevertheless, they are divided in their rival conceptions of ‘nature.’ McDowell distinguishes second nature or the "space of reasons" from first nature or the “realm of law.” Foot rejects this division.

On Foot's naturalism, natural goodness is just as much a feature of first nature as health is, even though human practical reasoning is unique in the biological world. I ...