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A Theory of Feelings Anger and Forgiveness Philosophizing Madness from Nietzsche to Derrida"My Madness Saved Me"10 Good Questions about Life and Death12 Modern Philosophers50 Reasons People Give for Believing in a GodA Cabinet of Philosophical CuriositiesA Case for IronyA Companion to BioethicsA Companion to Buddhist PhilosophyA Companion to FoucaultA Companion to GenethicsA Companion to GenethicsA Companion to HumeA Companion to KantA Companion to Phenomenology and ExistentialismA Companion to PragmatismA Companion to the Philosophy of ActionA Companion to the Philosophy of BiologyA Companion to the Philosophy of LiteratureA Conceptual History of PsychologyA Critical Overview of Biological FunctionsA Critique of Naturalistic Philosophies of MindA Cursing Brain?A Delicate BalanceA Farewell to AlmsA Fragile LifeA Frightening LoveA Future for PresentismA Guide to the Good LifeA History of PsychiatryA History of the MindA Life Worth LivingA Manual of Experimental PhilosophyA Map of the MindA Metaphysics of PsychopathologyA Mind So RareA Minimal LibertarianismA Natural History of Human MoralityA Natural History of Human ThinkingA Natural History of VisionA Parliament of MindsA Philosopher Looks at The Sense of HumorA Philosophical DiseaseA Philosophy for the Science of Well-BeingA Philosophy of BoredomA Philosophy of Cinematic ArtA Philosophy of CultureA Philosophy of EmptinessA Philosophy of FearA Philosophy of PainA Physicalist ManifestoA Place for ConsciousnessA Question of TrustA Research Agenda for DSM-VA Revolution of the MindA Sentimentalist Theory of the MindA Stroll With William JamesA Tapestry of ValuesA Tear is an Intellectual ThingA Theory of FreedomA Thousand MachinesA Universe of ConsciousnessA Very Bad WizardA Very Bad Wizard: Morality Behind the CurtainA Virtue EpistemologyA World Full of GodsA World Without ValuesAbout FaceAbout the Beginning of the Hermeneutics of the SelfAction and ResponsibilityAction in ContextAction Theory, Rationality and CompulsionAction, Contemplation, and HappinessAction, Emotion and WillAdam SmithAdaptive DynamicsAddictionAddictionAddiction and ResponsibilityAddiction and Self-ControlAddiction Is a ChoiceAdvances in Identity Theory and ResearchAftermathAfterwarAgainst AdaptationAgainst AutonomyAgainst BioethicsAgainst HappinessAgainst HealthAgainst MarriageAgency and ActionAgency and AnswerabilityAgency and EmbodimentAgency and ResponsibilityAgency, Freedom, and Moral ResponsibilityAl-JununAlain BadiouAlain BadiouAlasdair MacIntyreAlien Landscapes?Altered EgosAmbivalenceAn Anthology of Psychiatric EthicsAn Ethics for TodayAn Intellectual History of CannibalismAn Interpretation of DesireAn Introduction to EthicsAn Introduction to Kant's Moral Philosophy An Introduction to Philosophy of EducationAn Introduction to the Philosophy of MindAn Introduction to the Philosophy of MindAn Introduction to the Philosophy of PsychologyAn Introductory Philosophy of MedicineAn Odd Kind of FameAnalytic FreudAnalytic Philosophy in AmericaAncient AngerAncient Models of MindAncient Philosophy of the SelfAngerAnimal LessonsAnimal MindsAnimals Like UsAnnihilationAnother PlanetAnswers for AristotleAnti-ExternalismAnti-Individualism and KnowledgeAntigone’s ClaimAntipsychiatryAre We Hardwired?Are Women Human?Arguing about DisabilityArguing About Human NatureAristotle and the Philosophy of FriendshipAristotle on Practical WisdomAristotle's ChildrenAristotle's Ethics and Moral ResponsibilityAristotle's WayAristotle, Emotions, and EducationArt & MoralityArt After Conceptual ArtArt in Three DimensionsArt, Self and KnowledgeArtificial ConsciousnessArtificial HappinessAspects of PsychologismAsylum to ActionAt the Existentialist CaféAtonement and ForgivenessAttention is Cognitive UnisonAutobiography as PhilosophyAutonomyAutonomy and Mental DisorderAutonomy and the Challenges to LiberalismBabies by DesignBackslidingBadiouBadiou's DeleuzeBadiou, Balibar, Ranciere: Rethinking EmancipationBare Facts And Naked TruthsBasic Desert, Reactive Attitudes and Free WillBattlestar Galactica and PhilosophyBe Like the FoxBeautyBecoming a SubjectBecoming HumanBefore ConsciousnessBehavingBehavioral Genetics in the Postgenomic EraBeing AmoralBeing HumanBeing Mentally Ill: A Sociological Theory Being No OneBeing Realistic about ReasonsBeing ReducedBeing YourselfBelief's Own EthicsBending Over BackwardsBerlin Childhood around 1900Bernard WilliamsBertrand RussellBest ExplanationsBetter than BothBetter Than WellBetween Two WorldsBeyond HealthBeyond Hegel and NietzscheBeyond KuhnBeyond LossBeyond MelancholyBeyond Moral JudgmentBeyond PostmodernismBeyond ReductionBeyond SchizophreniaBeyond the DSM StoryBioethicsBioethics and the BrainBioethics in the ClinicBiological Complexity and Integrative PluralismBiology Is TechnologyBiosBipolar ExpeditionsBlackwell Companion to the Philosophy of EducationBlindsight & The Nature of ConsciousnessBlues - Philosophy for EveryoneBlushBob Dylan and PhilosophyBody ConsciousnessBody Image And Body SchemaBody ImagesBody LanguageBody MattersBody WorkBody-Subjects and Disordered MindsBoundBoundaries of the MindBoyleBrain Evolution and CognitionBrain FictionBrain, Mind, and Human Behavior in Contemporary Cognitive ScienceBrain-WiseBrainchildrenBrains, Buddhas, and BelievingBrainstormingBrave New WorldsBreakdown of WillBrief Child Therapy Homework PlannerBrief Inquiry into the Meaning of Sin and FaithBrief Therapy Homework PlannerBritain on the CouchBritish Idealism and the Concept of the SelfBrute RationalityBuffy the Vampire Slayer and PhilosophyBut Is It Art?Camus and SartreCartesian LinguisticsCartographies of the MindCarving Nature at Its JointsCase Studies in Biomedical Research EthicsCassandra's DaughterCategories We Live ByCato's TearsCausation and CounterfactualsCauses, Laws, and Free WillChanging Conceptions of the Child from the Renaissance to Post-ModernityChanging the SubjectChaosophyCharacter and Moral Psychology Character as Moral FictionCharles DarwinCharles S. Peirce's PhenomenologyCherishmentChildhood and the Philosophy of EducationChildrenChildren, Families, and Health Care Decision MakingChoices and ConflictChoosing Not to ChooseChristmas - Philosophy for EveryoneCinema, Philosophy, BergmanCinematic MythmakingCity and Soul in Plato's RepublicClassifying MadnessClear and Queer ThinkingClinical EthicsClinical Psychiatry in Imperial GermanyCodependent ForevermoreCoffee - Philosophy for EveryoneCognition and the BrainCognition of Value in Aristotle's EthicsCognition Through Understanding: Self-Knowledge, Interlocution, Reasoning, ReflectionCognitive BiologyCognitive FictionsCognitive Neuroscience of EmotionCognitive Systems and the Extended MindCognitive Systems and the Extended Mind Cognitive Theories of Mental IllnessCoherence in Thought and ActionCollected Papers, Volume 1Collected Papers, Volume 2College SexComedy IncarnateCommitmentCommunicative Action and Rational ChoiceCompassionate Moral RealismCompetence, Condemnation, and CommitmentConcealment And ExposureConcepts and Causes in the Philosophy of DiseaseConceptual Analysis and Philosophical NaturalismConceptual Art and PaintingConceptual Issues in Evolutionary BiologyConfessionsConfucianismConnected, or What It Means to Live in the Network SocietyConquest of AbundanceConscience and ConvenienceConsciousnessConsciousnessConsciousnessConsciousness ConsciousnessConsciousness and Fundamental RealityConsciousness and Its Place in NatureConsciousness and LanguageConsciousness and Mental LifeConsciousness and MindConsciousness and the NovelConsciousness and the SelfConsciousness EmergingConsciousness EvolvingConsciousness ExplainedConsciousness in ActionConsciousness RecoveredConsciousness RevisitedConsciousness, Color, and ContentConsole and ClassifyConstructing the WorldConstructive AnalysisContemporary Debates In Applied EthicsContemporary Debates in Moral TheoryContemporary Debates in Philosophy of BiologyContemporary Debates in Philosophy of MindContemporary Debates in Political PhilosophyContemporary Debates in Social PhilosophyContemporary Perspectives on Natural LawContested Knowledge: Social Theory TodayContesting PsychiatryContext and the AttitudesContinental Philosophy of ScienceControlControlling Our DestiniesConversations About Psychology and Sexual OrientationCopernicus, Darwin and FreudCrazy for YouCreating a Life of Meaning and CompassionCreating ConsilienceCreating HysteriaCreating Mental IllnessCreating Scientific ConceptsCreating the American JunkieCreation, Rationality and AutonomyCreatures Like Us?Crime and CulpabilityCrime, Punishment, and Mental IllnessCrimes of ReasonCritical New Perspectives on Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity DisorderCritical PsychiatryCritical PsychologyCritical ResistanceCritical Thinking About PsychologyCritical VisionsCross and KhoraCruel CompassionCTRL [SPACE]Cultural Psychology of the SelfCultural Theory: An IntroductionCulture and Psychiatric DiagnosisCulture and Subjective Well-BeingCulture of DeathCultures of NeurastheniaCurious EmotionsCurrent Controversies in Experimental PhilosophyCurrent Controversies in Values and ScienceCustom and Reason in HumeCustomers and Patrons of the Mad-TradeCutting God in Half - And Putting the Pieces Together AgainCylons in AmericaDamaged IdentitiesDamasio's Error and Descartes' TruthDangerous EmotionsDaniel DennettDaniel DennettDark AgesDarwin and DesignDarwin's Dangerous IdeaDarwin's LegacyDarwin, God and the Meaning of LifeDarwinian PsychiatryDarwinian ReductionismDarwinizing CultureDating: Philosophy for EveryoneDeathDeathDeath and CharacterDeath and CompassionDeath and the AfterlifeDebating DesignDebating HumanismDecision Making, Personhood and DementiaDecomposing the WillDeconstructing PsychotherapyDeconstruction and DemocracyDeeper Than DarwinDeeper than ReasonDefending Science - within ReasonDefining Psychopathology in the 21st CenturyDegrees of BeliefDeleuze and the Concepts of CinemaDelusion and Self-DeceptionDelusions and Other Irrational BeliefsDelusions and the Madness of the MassesDementiaDemons, Dreamers, and MadmenDennett and Ricoeur on the Narrative SelfDennett’s PhilosophyDepression Is a ChoiceDepression, Emotion and the SelfDepthDerrida, Deleuze, PsychoanalysisDescartesDescartes and the Passionate MindDescartes' CogitoDescartes's Changing MindDescartes's Concept of MindDescribing Inner Experience?Descriptions and PrescriptionsDesembodied Spirits and Deanimated Bodies Desert Islands and Other Texts (1953-1974)Desire and AffectDesire, Love, and IdentityDesire, Practical Reason, and the GoodDeveloping the VirtuesDiagnosing the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental DisordersDialectics of the SelfDid My Neurons Make Me Do It?Difference and IdentityDigital SoulDimensional Models of Personality DisordersDisability, Difference, DiscriminationDisjunctivismDisorders of VolitionDisorientation and Moral LifeDispatches from the Freud WarsDisrupted LivesDistractionDisturbed ConsciousnessDivided Minds and Successive SelvesDo Apes Read Minds?Do Fish Feel Pain?Do We Still Need Doctors?Does Consciousness Cause Behavior?Does the Woman Exist?Doing without ConceptsDon't be FooledDon't Believe Everything You ThinkDonald DavidsonDonald Davidson on Truth, Meaning, and the MentalDoubting Darwin?Down GirlDreaming and Other Involuntary MentationDSM-IV SourcebookDSM-IV SourcebookDSM-IV-TR CasebookDworkin and His CriticsDying to KnowDynamics in ActionDysthymia and the Spectrum of Chronic DepressionsEccentricsEducational MetamorphosesEffective IntentionsElbow Room: The Varieties of Free Will Worth WantingEmbodied Minds in ActionEmbodied RhetoricsEmbodied Selves and Divided MindsEmbryos under the MicroscopeEmergencies in Mental Health PracticeEmerging Conceptual, Ethical and Policy Issues in BionanotechnologyEmotionEmotion and ConsciousnessEmotion and PsycheEmotion ExperienceEmotion RegulationEmotion, Evolution, And RationalityEmotional IntelligenceEmotional ReasonEmotional ReasonEmotional TruthEmotions in Humans and ArtifactsEmotions in the Moral LifeEmotions in the Moral LifeEmotions, Value, and AgencyEmpathyEmpathy and AgencyEmpathy and Moral DevelopmentEmpathy and MoralityEmpathy in the Context of PhilosophyEmpirical Ethics in PsychiatryEnactivist InterventionsEnchanted LoomsEngaging BuddhismEngineering the Human GermlineEnjoymentEnvyEpicureanismEpistemic LuckEpistemologyEpistemology and EmotionsEpistemology and the Psychology of Human JudgmentEros and the GoodErotic MoralityEssays in Social NeuroscienceEssays in the Metaphysics of Mind Essays on Derek Parfit's On What MattersEssays on Free Will and Moral ResponsibilityEssays on Nonconceptual ContentEssays on Philosophical CounselingEssays on Reference, Language, and MindEssays on the Concept of Mind in Early-Modern PhilosophyEssential Sources in the Scientific Study of ConsciousnessEsssential Philosophy of PsychiatryEternal Sunshine of the Spotless MindEthical Conflicts in PsychologyEthical Issues in Forensic Mental Health ResearchEthical Issues in Human CloningEthical TheoryEthicsEthicsEthics and the A PrioriEthics and the Metaphysics of MedicineEthics and Values in PsychotherapyEthics Done RightEthics ExpertiseEthics in Plain EnglishEthics in PracticeEthics in Psychiatric ResearchEthics of PsychiatryEthics without OntologyEuropean Review of Philosophy. Vol. 5Everyday IrrationalityEvil in Modern ThoughtEvolutionEvolution and the Human MindEvolution's RainbowEvolutionary Origins of MoralityEvolutionary PsychologyExamined LifeExamined LivesExistential AmericaExistentialismExistentialism and Romantic LoveExperimental PhilosophyExperimental PhilosophyExperimental PhilosophyExperimental Philosophy, Rationalism, and NaturalismExperiments in EthicsExplaining ConsciousnessExplaining the BrainExplaining the Computational MindExplanatory PluralismExploding the Gene MythExploring HappinessExploring the SelfExpression and the InnerExpressions of JudgmentExtraordinary Science and PsychiatryFaces of IntentionFact and ValueFact and Value in EmotionFacts and ValuesFacts, Values, and NormsFads and Fallacies in the Social SciencesFaith and Wisdom in ScienceFatherhoodFear of KnowledgeFearless SpeechFeeling Pain and Being in PainFeelings and EmotionsFeelings of BeingFellow CreaturesFellow-Feeling and the Moral LifeFeminism and Its DiscontentsFeminism and Philosophy of ScienceFeminist Ethics and Social and Political PhilosophyFeminist Interpretations of Rene DescartesFeminist TheoryField Notes from ElsewhereFinding Consciousness in the BrainFingerprints of GodFlesh in the Age of ReasonFolk Psychological NarrativesFolk Psychology Re-AssessedForces of HabitForgivenessForgiveness and LoveForgiveness and RetributionFoucault 2.0Foucault and PhilosophyFoucault NowFoucault, Psychology and the Analytics of PowerFoundational Issues in Human Brain MappingFoundations of Ethical Practice, Research, and Teaching in PsychologyFour Views on Free WillFrank Ramsey (1903-1930)Free WillFree WillFree WillFree WillFree Will and Action ExplanationFree Will and LuckFree Will And Moral ResponsibilityFree Will as an Open Scientific ProblemFree Will, Agency, and Meaning in LifeFree: Why Science Hasn't Disproved Free WillFreedomFreedom and DeterminismFreedom And NeurobiologyFreedom and ResponsibiltyFreedom and ValueFreedom EvolvesFreedom RegainedFreedom vs. InterventionFreedom, Fame, Lying, and BetrayalFreudFreud and the Question of PseudoscienceFreud As PhilosopherFreud's AnswerFreud, the Reluctant PhilosopherFriedrich NietzscheFrom Chance to ChoiceFrom Clinic to ClassroomFrom Complexity to LifeFrom Enlightenment to ReceptivityFrom Knowledge to Wisdom: A Revolution for Science and the HumanitiesFrom Morality to Mental HealthFrom Passions to EmotionsFrom Philosophy to PsychotherapyFrom Valuing to ValueFrontiers of ConsciousnessFrontiers of JusticeFurnishing the MindGalileo in PittsburghGenderGender and Mental HealthGender in the MirrorGender TroubleGenesGenes, Women, EqualityGenetic Nature/CultureGenetic ProspectsGenetic ProspectsGenetic SecretsGenocide's AftermathGenomes and What to Make of ThemGerman Idealism and the JewGerman PhilosophyGetting HookedGilles DeleuzeGlobal PhilosophyGluttonyGod and Phenomenal ConsciousnessGoffman's LegacyGoing Amiss in Experimental ResearchGoodness & AdviceGrassroots SpiritualityGrave MattersGrave MattersGreedGreek Models of Mind and SelfGut ReactionsHabilitation, Health, and AgencyHabits of MindHallucinationHandbook of BioethicsHandbook of EmotionsHappinessHappinessHappinessHappinessHappiness and EducationHappiness and the Good LifeHappiness Is OverratedHappiness, Death, and the Remainder of LifeHard LuckHarmful ThoughtsHaving the World in ViewHealing PsychiatryHealing the Soul in the Age of the BrainHealth, Illness and DiseaseHealth, Science, and Ordinary LanguageHegelHeidegger and a Metaphysics of FeelingHeidegger, Metaphysics and the Univocity of BeingHermann von Helmholtz's MechanismHermeneutics As PoliticsHeterophobiaHeterosyncraciesHeuristics and BiasesHeuristics and the LawHidden ResourcesHidden SelvesHiding from HumanityHigh Art LiteHistorical OntologyHistory of Psychiatry and Medical PsychologyHistory, Historicity And ScienceHobbesHomosexualitiesHope and Dread in PsychoanalysisHot ThoughtHow Can I Be Trusted?How Can the Human Mind Occur in the Physical Universe?How Children Learn the Meanings of WordsHow Could Conscious Experiences Affect Brains?How Do We Know Who We Are?How Emotions WorkHow Emotions WorkHow History Made the MindHow Images ThinkHow is Nature Possible?How Propaganda WorksHow Science WorksHow Scientific Practices MatterHow Scientists Explain DiseaseHow The Body Shapes The MindHow the Body Shapes the Way We ThinkHow the Mind Explains BehaviorHow the Mind Uses the BrainHow to Be a StoicHow to Make Opportunity EqualHow to Solve the Mind-Body Problemhow to stop timeHow to Think More About SexHow We HopeHow We ReasonHuman CloningHuman Development, Language and the Future of MankindHuman EnhancementHuman Evolution, Reproduction, and MoralityHuman GoodnessHuman Identity and BioethicsHuman NatureHuman NatureHuman Nature and the Limits of ScienceHuman-Built WorldHumanismHumanism, What's That?HumanityHumans, Animals, MachinesHumeHumeHume on Motivation and VirtueHume's True ScepticismHume’s Moral Philosophy and Contemporary PsychologyHusserlHystoriesI Am Dynamite!I of the VortexI Was WrongIdeas that MatterIdentifying the MindIdentity and Agency in Cultural WorldsIgnorance and ImaginationIllnessImagination and Its PathologiesImagination and the Meaningful BrainImagining NumbersImmortal RemainsImproving Nature?In Defense of an Evolutionary Concept of HealthIn Defense of SentimentalityIn Love With LifeIn Praise of Athletic BeautyIn Praise of DesireIn Praise of Natural PhilosophyIn Praise of the WhipIn Pursuit of HappinessIn Search of HappinessIn the Name of GodIn the Name of IdentityIn the Space of ReasonsIn the SwarmIn Two MindsInclusive EthicsIncompatibilism's AllureIndividual Differences in Conscious ExperienceInfinity and PerspectiveInformation ArtsInformed Consent in Medical ResearchIngmar Bergman, Cinematic PhilosopherInhuman ThoughtsInner PresenceInsanityIntegrating Psychotherapy and PharmacotherapyIntegrity and the Fragile SelfIntelligent VirtueIntentionIntentionality, Deliberation and AutonomyIntentions and IntentionalityIntentions and IntentionalityInterpreting MindsInterpreting NietzscheIntroducing Greek PhilosophyIntrospection and ConsciousnessIntrospection VindicatedIntuition, Imagination, and Philosophical MethodologyIntuitionismInvestigating the Psychological WorldIrrationalityIrrationalityIs Academic Feminism Dead?Is It Me or My Meds?Is Long-Term Therapy Unethical?Is Oedipus Online?Is Science Neurotic?Is Science Value Free?Is the Visual World a Grand Illusion?Is There a Duty to Die?Issues in Philosophical CounselingJacques LacanJacques RancièreJacques RanciereJean-Paul SartreJohn McDowellJohn SearleJohn Searle's Ideas About Social RealityJohn Stuart MillJohn Stuart Mill and the Writing of CharacterJoint AttentionJokesJonathan EdwardsJudging and UnderstandingJustice for ChildrenJustice in RobesJustice, Luck, and KnowledgeKantKant and MiltonKant and the Fate of AutonomyKant and the Limits of AutonomyKant and the Role of Pleasure in Moral ActionKant on Freedom, Law, and HappinessKant on Moral AutonomyKant's Anatomy of EvilKant's Anatomy of the Intelligent MindKant's Theory of VirtueKarl JaspersKarl PopperKarl Popper, Science and EnlightenmentKey Concepts in PhilosophyKierkegaardKierkegaard as PhenomenologistKierkegaard's Concept of DespairKierkegaard's MuseKinds of MindsKinds, Things, and StuffKnowing EmotionsKnowing, Knowledge and BeliefsKnowledge MonopoliesKnowledge, Belief, and CharacterKnowledge, Possibility, and ConsciousnessLacanLack of CharacterLack of CharacterLanguageLanguage in ContextLanguage, Consciousness, CultureLanguage, Culture, and MindLanguage, Vision, and MusicLaw and the BrainLaw, Liberty, and PsychiatryLaws, Mind, and Free WillLeaving YouLectures on the History of Political PhilosophyLevelling the Playing FieldLiberal Education in a Knowledge SocietyLiberatory PsychiatryLife and ActionLife at the Texas State Lunatic Asylum, 1857-1997Life Is Not a Game of PerfectLife of the MindLife's FormLife, Death, & MeaningLife, Death, and Meaning: Key Philosophical Readings on the Big Questions Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of UtilityLife, Sex, and IdeasLight in the Dark RoomLike a Splinter in Your MindLiving and Dying WellLiving NarrativeLiving Outside Mental IllnessLiving with DarwinLiving With One’s PastLockeLocke LockeLogic and the Art of Memory Loneliness in Philosophy, Psychology, and LiteratureLooking for SpinozaLooking for The StrangerLost in DialogueLost SoulsLOT 2LoveLoveLove's ConfusionsLove's VisionLove, Friendship, and the SelfLove, Sex & TragedyLuckyLudwig WittgensteinLustLyingMachine ConsciousnessMad for FoucaultMad TravelersMade with WordsMadness And Death In PhilosophyMadness and DemocracyMadness at HomeMadness Is CivilizationMaking Natural KnowledgeMaking Sense of EvolutionMaking Sense of Freedom and ResponsibilityMaking the DSM-5Making the Social WorldMaking TruthMale Female EmailMan, Beast, and ZombieMandated Reporting of Suspected Child AbuseManiaManic Depression and CreativityMapping the Edges and the In-betweenMapping the Future of BiologyMarcus AureliusMaster PassionsMatters of the MindMe++Meaning and Moral OrderMeaning and Value in a Secular AgeMeaning in LifeMeaning in Life and Why It MattersMeaning, Basic Self-Knowledge, and MindMeanings of ArtMeasuring HappinessMeasuring PsychopathologyMedia MadnessMedical Enhancement and PosthumanityMedical NihilismMedicine and Philosophy in Classical AntiquityMedicine of the PersonMedicine, Mental Health, Religion, Science and Well-BeingMeditations on Self-Discipline and FailureMelancholy And the Care of the SoulMelancholy and the Otherness of GodMementoMemory and NarrativeMental ActionsMental CausationMental Causation and OntologyMental HealthMental Health At The CrossroadsMental Health Policy in BritainMerit, Meaning, and Human BondageMerleau-PontyMerleau-Ponty and the Possibilities of PhilosophyMetacognition and Theory of MindMetacreationMetaethical SubjectivismMetaethicsMetal and FleshMetaphors of MemoryMetapoliticsMethods in MindMichel FoucaultMidlifeMill's UtilitarianismMindMindMindMind and ConsciousnessMind and CosmosMind and MechanismMind GamesMind in a Physical WorldMind in Everyday Life and Cognitive ScienceMind in LifeMind the BodyMind TimeMind's LandscapeMind, Brain and the Elusive SoulMind, Brain, and Free WillMind, Reason and ImaginationMinding MindsMindreadersMindreading AnimalsMinds and PersonsMinds, Brains, and LawMinds, Ethics, and ConditionalsMindshapingMindsightMindworldsMirror, MirrorMixed FeelingsMockingbird YearsModels of the SelfModern Social ImaginariesModern Theories of JusticeModernity and SubjectivityModernity and TechnologyMoody Minds DistemperedMoral BrainsMoral DimensionsMoral FailureMoral ImaginationMoral LiteracyMoral MachinesMoral ParticularismMoral PsychologyMoral Psychology and Human AgencyMoral Psychology, Volume 1Moral Psychology, Volume 2Moral Psychology, Volume 3Moral Psychology: Volume IVMoral RepairMoral Responsibility and Alternative PossibilitiesMoral TribesMoral Value and Human DiversityMorality and Self-InterestMorality in a Natural WorldMorality, Moral Luck and ResponsibilityMotherhoodMotive and RightnessMoving Beyond Prozac, DSM, and the New PsychiatryMultiple Analogies in Science and PhilosophyMultiple Identities & False MemoriesMusic, Madness, and the Unworking of LanguageMy Brain Made Me Do ItMy Double UnveiledMy WayNarrativeNarrative and IdentityNarrative MedicineNarrative PsychiatryNarrative Theory and the Cognitive SciencesNatural Ethical FactsNatural Kinds and Conceptual ChangeNatural MindsNatural-Born CybogsNaturalism and the First-Person PerspectiveNaturalism and the Human ConditionNaturalism in the Philosophy of HealthNaturalism in the Philosophy of HealthNaturalized BioethicsNaturalizing the MindNatureNature and NarrativeNear Death ExperienceNeither Bad nor MadNeither Victim nor SurvivorNeuro-Philosophy and the Healthy MindNeuroethicsNeuroethicsNeuroexistentialismNeurological Foundations of Cognitive Neuroscience Neurophilosophy at WorkNeurophilosophy of Free WillNeuropoliticsNeuropsychoanalysis in PracticeNeuroscience and PhilosophyNew Essays on the Explanation of ActionNew Philosophy for a New MediaNew Versions of VictimsNew Waves in Philosophy of ActionNietzscheNietzsche and Buddhist PhilosophyNietzsche and PsychotherapyNietzsche on Ethics and PoliticsNietzsche's TherapyNietzsche, Culture and EducationNietzsche: The Man and His PhilosophyNihil UnboundNoir AnxietyNormative EthicsNormativityNorms of NatureNotebooks 1951-1959Notes Toward a Performative Theory of AssemblyNothing So AbsurdOblivionOn AnxietyOn ApologyOn Being AuthenticOn Being AuthenticOn BeliefOn BetrayalOn BullshitOn DelusionOn DesireOn EmotionsOn HashishOn Human NatureOn Human RightsOn Loving Our EnemiesOn Nature and LanguageOn PersonalityOn ReflectionOn Romantic LoveOn the EmotionsOn the Freud WatchOn the Government of the LivingOn the Human ConditionOn the InternetOn the Meaning of LifeOn the Philosophy of LawOn the Pragmatics of CommunicationOn the Punitive SocietyOn TruthOn Virtue EthicsOn What MattersOn What We Owe to Each OtherOne Hundred DaysOnflowOnly a Promise of HappinessOntology of ConsciousnessOpen MindedOpen Your EyesOrgans without BodiesOther MindsOur Last Great IllusionOur Own MindsOur Posthuman FutureOur StoriesOut of Its MindOut of Our HeadsOxford Guide to the MindOxford Handbook of Psychiatric EthicsOxford Studies in Experimental PhilosophyOxford Studies in Normative EthicsOxford Studies in Normative Ethics, Volume 7Oxford Textbook of Philosophy of PsychiatryPanic DisorderPanpsychismPanpsychism in the WestPartialityPassionate EnginesPassionate EnginesPathologies of BeliefPathologies of ReasonPatient Autonomy and the Ethics of ResponsibilityPC, M.D.Perceiving the WorldPerception & CognitionPerception and Basic BeliefsPerception, Hallucination, and IllusionPerceptual ExperiencePerfecting VirtuePerplexities of ConsciousnessPersistencePersonal AutonomyPersonal Autonomy in SocietyPersonal IdentityPersonal Identity and EthicsPersonal Identity and Fractured SelvesPersonhood and Health CarePersonsPersons and BodiesPersons, Humanity, and the Definition of DeathPersons, Souls and DeathPerspectives on ImitationPerspectives on PragmatismPessimismPhenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal KnowledgePhenomenal ConsciousnessPhenomenal IntentionalityPhenomenologyPhenomenology and ExistentialismPhenomenology and Philosophy of MindPhenomenology of IllnessPhilosophersPhilosophers on MusicPhilosophers without GodsPhilosophical CounselingPhilosophical Counselling and the UnconsciousPhilosophical DevicesPhilosophical Foundations of NeurosciencePhilosophical History and the Problem of ConsciousnessPhilosophical Issues in PharmaceuticsPhilosophical Issues in PsychiatryPhilosophical Issues in PsychiatryPhilosophical Issues in Psychiatry IIPhilosophical MethodologyPhilosophical MidwiferyPhilosophical Myths of the FallPhilosophical Perspectives on DepictionPhilosophical Perspectives on Technology and PsychiatryPhilosophical PracticePhilosophical Reflections on DisabilityPhilosophizing About Sex Philosophizing the EverydayPhilosophy and HappinessPhilosophy and LivingPhilosophy and PsychiatryPhilosophy and PsychotherapyPhilosophy and Science FictionPhilosophy and the EmotionsPhilosophy and the EmotionsPhilosophy and the Interpretation of Pop CulturePhilosophy and the Moving ImagePhilosophy and the NeurosciencesPhilosophy and This Actual WorldPhilosophy As FictionPhilosophy BitesPhilosophy Bites BackPhilosophy for Counselling and PsychotherapyPhilosophy for LifePhilosophy in a New CenturyPhilosophy in an Age of SciencePhilosophy in Children's LiteraturePhilosophy in the Roman EmpirePhilosophy of ActionPhilosophy of ActionPhilosophy of BiologyPhilosophy of BiologyPhilosophy of BiologyPhilosophy of BiologyPhilosophy of BodyPhilosophy of Film and Motion PicturesPhilosophy of LovePhilosophy of Love, Sex, and MarriagePhilosophy of Love, Sex, and Marriage: An IntroductionPhilosophy of MedicinePhilosophy of MindPhilosophy of Mind and CognitionPhilosophy of Personal Identity and Multiple PersonalityPhilosophy of PsychologyPhilosophy of Public HealthPhilosophy of SciencePhilosophy of SciencePhilosophy of Technology: The Technological ConditionPhilosophy of the Social SciencesPhilosophy on TapPhilosophy PracticePhilosophy the Day after TomorrowPhilosophy Within Its Proper BoundsPhilosophy's Role in Counseling and PsychotherapyPhilosophy, Neuroscience and ConsciousnessPhilosophy, Politics, DemocracyPhotography and PhilosophyPhysical RealizationPhysicalism and Its DiscontentsPhysicalism and Mental CausationPhysicalism, or Something Near EnoughPhysician-Assisted DyingPillar of SaltPin-up GrrrlsPlant MindsPlatoPlatoPlato, Not Prozac!Platonic Ethics, Old and NewPleasurePluralistic CasuistryPolarities of ExperiencesPolitical EmotionsPopper, Objectivity and the Growth of KnowledgePornPorn StudiesPornography, Sex, and FeminismPortrait of the Psychiatrist as a Young ManPositive NihilismPost-TruthPostcolonial DisordersPostpsychiatryPosttraumatic Stress DisorderPower and the SelfPower SplitPractical Autonomy and BioethicsPractical ConflictsPractical Identity and Narrative AgencyPractical PhilosophyPractical RulesPractical Tortoise RaisingPractically ProfoundPracticing Feminist Ethics in PsychologyPragmatic BioethicsPragmatismPragmatism, Old And NewPraise and BlamePredicative MindsPreferences and Well-BeingPrescriptions for the MindPresocraticsPrimary and Secondary QualitiesPrimates and PhilosophersPrimitive ColorsPrivacyPrivileged AccessProblems in MindProblems of RationalityProzac As a Way of LifeProzac BacklashProzac on the CouchPsyche and EthosPsyche and SomaPsychiatric Aspects of Justification, Excuse and Mitigation in Anglo-American Criminal Law Psychiatric Cultures ComparedPsychiatric Diagnosis and ClassificationPsychiatric EthicsPsychiatric HegemonyPsychiatric PowerPsychiatric SlaveryPsychiatry and Philosophy of SciencePsychiatry and ReligionPsychiatry as a Human SciencePsychiatry as Cognitive NeurosciencePsychiatry in SocietyPsychiatry in the New MilleniumPsychiatry in the Scientific ImagePsychiatry, Psychoanalysis, And The New Biology Of MindPsycho-Physical Dualism TodayPsychoanalysis and Narrative MedicinePsychoanalysis and the Philosophy of SciencePsychological Concepts and Biological PsychiatryPsychology and PhilosophyPsychology and the Question of AgencyPsychology's Interpretive TurnPsychology, Psychotherapy, Psychoanalysis, and the Politics of Human RelationshipsPsychotherapy and ConfidentialityPsychotherapy As PraxisPublic PhilosophyPunishmentPure ImmanencePurple HazePursuing MeaningQuality of Life and Human DifferenceQueer PhilosophyQuestions for FreudQuestions for FreudQuine and Davidson on Language, Thought and RealityRaceRace in Contemporary MedicineRadiant CoolRadical AlterityRadical ExternalismRadical HopeRational and Social AgencyRational CausationRational Choice in an Uncertain WorldRationality + Consciousness = Free 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Deborah Achtenberg's Cognition of Value in Aristotle's Ethics: Promise of Enrichment, Threat of Destruction is an ambitious and challenging work. In the belief that some philosophers and their philosophies, especially some contemporary social and political philosophies, have become too entrenched in their own methods and traditions, Achtenberg emphasizes that "the history of philosophy is culture-bound ... the result of decisions, rather than of observation or argument" (p. 12). In keeping with her sensitivity to this postmodern age, this age of global connectedness, Achtenberg calls for a "new syncretism," a loosening of the fixed boundaries within which thinking currently takes place. To this end, her detailed and carefully argued essay intends to shake things up. Drawing upon the history of philosophy, she relates the works of those who have often been distinguished and differentiates the writings of those whose works have typically been compared to enjoin the contemporary debates surrounding Aristotle's ethics, especially the Nicomachean Ethics. She believes that taking a fresh look at Aristotelian thought provides a new view of the philosopher's ethical theory that in turn encourages "a new way of looking at ethical theory in general."
To guide her reflection, Achtenberg begins with a series of questions: What is ethical cognition? What kind of cognition is involved in ethical choice and the exercise of virtue? What kind of cognition is entailed by our emotions--"our feelings of love, hate, pity, anger, kindness, envy?" She considers several answers to these questions, the most obvious of which, "the simple answer," is the view "that both ethical and emotional cognition ... involve cognition of value." Acting in accordance with virtuous character, the virtuous person chooses that which is understood to be "valuable in some way." Thus, when one loves, hates, pities or envies another person, one is aware of the object of one's "emotion as valuable in some way: beautiful or bad, as the subject of suffering or the bearer of positive qualities."
According to Achtenberg, however, this simple view was rejected both by the early Enlightenment thinkers and those of the early twentieth century. Unlike the simple view, which claims that ethical and emotional cognition involve the cognition of value, emotivists maintain that "ethical choices or judgments do not involve cognition of value." Emotions are not cognitive and they do not result from our relationship to the world; rather, they belong to us by nature; they are "brute and idiosyncratic." Hence, if our emotions do not originate in our perceptions or our experiences of the world in which we live, the simple view has reversed the proper relation between value judgments and emotions--ethical and emotional cognition do not involve the cognition of value; rather, "value judgments are expressions of emotion." Even formalistic ethical theories maintain that ethical cognition is limited to an understanding of a universal maxim and the way in which the understanding of the universal rule pertains to a specific instance.
Recently, however, having rejected both emotivism and formalism, some thinkers have argued that while there is indeed "ethical cognition," it does not entail the formalists' view that ethical awareness involves the application of a maxim to a particular instance; rather, Achtenberg maintains that ethical cognition "involves a rich awareness of the particular features of complex concrete situations and the perception of some among those features as salient" (pp. 2-3). Emotions are intentional; they do not have their origin in our brute animal nature. "They are forms of perception, types of rational orientation, toward the world, ways of perceiving particular situations" (p. 2). In the sphere of ethics, "salient particulars" stand out; they are the prominent features that are seen as being more important than other features. For the mathematician, Achtenberg explains, mathematically relevant particulars are important; for the lawyer, features pertaining to law, right, or justice stand out. Similarly, one acting virtuously perceives the "salient particulars," which involve certain "kinds of value." Achtenberg provides the example of one trying to decide which health plan would be beneficial to the elderly. Presumably, one would compare several plans; once the salient particulars of each plan under consideration announce themselves and are identified as being valuable, each plan may be evaluated in terms of the comparable relevant features, and the best plan may be determined. In light of these considerations by recent thinkers, Achtenberg suggests that we must reconsider the simple answer.
As Achtenberg points out in her first chapter, "Valuable Particulars," her discussion of "salient particulars" engages the work of several commentators on Aristotle's ethics, including John McDowell, Martha Nussbaum, Nancy Sherman, and Stephen G. Salkever (p. 13). McDowell ("Virtue and Reason") argues for a version of "salient particulars" when he claims that ethical virtue involves the "perception of particulars as salient" in keeping with "one's codifiable view of how to live." Achtenberg, however, insists that for Aristotle, if general principles for the way in which one is to live one's life "are only 'for the most part,'" then, as McDowell himself admits, they could not be codified. Nussbaum ("Discernment of Perception" and Fragility of Goodness) also holds that "the cognitive component of ethical virtue is not knowledge of universals or rules, but perception of particulars, that is, recognition of the salient features of complex, concrete situations." Achtenberg, however, argues that, for Aristotle, "wisdom utilizes a rule or general account (logos)," but "the rule that Aristotle has in mind is not intended to be authoritative for decision making" (p. 14). To speak more precisely, Achtenberg, quoting Aristotle (NE 2.6 1107a1-2) writes: "the mean is 'determined by a logos, specifically by the logos the practically insightful person would use to determine it'" (p. 127). Nussbaum herself admits "the standard of excellence is not a universal or rule, but what the person of practical wisdom would decide," but, Achtenberg insists, the logos involved is more akin to a "rule of thumb"; it "is not authoritative for decision making" (p. 14). "The standard of excellence is not a universal or rule, but is what the person of practical wisdom would decide ... the decision requires discernment and the discernment is in the perception of particulars." For Achtenberg, then, Nussbaum's claim that the "'standard of excellence' is not a universal but is the person of practical wisdom is too extreme" (p. 18). Sherman (Fabric of Character) argues that "the cognitive component of ethical virtue is not knowledge of the applicability of rules but is perception of ethical salience and that emotions are intentional states through which we come to perceive particular circumstances, to recognize what is ethically salient" (p. 14). Salkever (Finding the Mean) claims that "the cognitive component of ethical virtue is not deductively valid and necessary application of a scientific principle or a rule, but well-informed guessing, resting on a complex perception of the balance of importance and urgency likely to be best for us. Human goods are diverse and competing, as a number of examples indicate. Decisions require not the application of a rule, but the perception of an intelligent balance of the various competing goods." While McDowell, Nussbaum, and Sherman employ the term "salience," and Salkever uses the term "balance," what Achtenberg perceives to be lacking in these commentators and what distinguishes her own contribution to this discussion is her insistence on "value." Although Aristotle does not use the words "salience" or "balance," Achtenberg claims that for the philosopher, "what we must perceive in the particulars in each case is their value, that is, we must perceive the particulars as good or beautiful" (p. 15).
To situate Aristotle's ethics in the tradition, Achtenberg distinguishes two approaches to ethics that she believes will provide "a new framework for thinking about ethical or emotional development" (p. 5). First, there are those who "think the acquisition of ethical virtue involves an increase in awareness and the development of emotion." Second, there are those who hold that ethical or emotional development involves "the suppression or channeling of intellect and emotion" (p. 7). In this second group, Achtenberg includes not only the stoic philosopher Marcus Aurelius who seeks virtue by eliminating emotions and ignoring the body, but also the psychologist Sigmund Freud who argues that morality originates in the oedipal stage of the child's development. Marcus Aurelius' method, according to Achtenberg, entails what she calls "the 'imaginative deconstruction of wholes" (p. 4). If, for example, we consider the fact that we will all eventually die instead of thinking about our potential, our possible achievements, or the contributions we might make to our communities, we focus upon only one part of our lives at the expense of the totality and the richness of our entire lives. If we think of the main course of a special dinner as nothing other than the dead body of some animal, rather than as a scrumptious meal, we have deconstructed the whole experience and focused on one of its parts. Similarly, "emotions," for Marcus Aurelius, are "neither good nor bad"; they are "neutral"; "virtue" necessitates the eradication of the emotions; one must "despise the flesh" (p. 3). Thus, according to Achtenberg, Marcus Aurelius' view of ethical and emotional development does not involve an increase, but a decrease in awareness.
Sigmund Freud argues that morality appears in the oedipal stage of development. When the child is sexually attracted to the parent of the opposite sex, he or she knows that the object of his or her desire is unobtainable; hence, morality originates in the repression of desire. While, Achtenberg claims, Marcus Aurelius and Freud hold that virtue requires the suppression of our cognition of the desired object, others have argued that virtue demands the suppression of cognition not because of the object of our desire, but because of cognition itself. Jean-Jacques Rousseau argues that in the pre-rational state humans seek contentment and are kind to one another by nature but that the development of reason leads us away from the simplicity of our original virtuous state. Thus whether the intellect is evil, merely "neutral, or ineffective with regard to what is good," "emotion is good" (p. 5). Virtue requires the simplicity of the prerational state, i.e., the suppression of reason and the intellect. Similarly, in the first book of the Hebrew Bible, Genesis, humans lose their special place in the Garden of Eden, the original idyllic state, by defying God's commandment not to eat the fruit of the tree of knowledge that would give knowledge of good and evil. Since God is essential to the biblical conception, the human relation to the divine is of the utmost importance; living in accordance with God and the commandments is all that matters; indeed, obedience to God is more important than knowledge or intelligence. Achtenberg understands the biblical conception to mean that human "ethical development is not intellectual development, but affective and voluntary development"; the biblical account requires the suppression of the intellect (p. 6).
For Thomas Hobbes, however, while human emotions are instinctual and belong to human beings by nature, they do not involve any sin (Lev. I. xiii). The basic human passions or emotions, according to Hobbes, are "Feare of Death, Desire of such things as are necessary to commodious living, and a Hope by their [humans'] Industry to obtain them." However, since there is a shortage of resources to satisfy humans' desires, and since in their natural state human beings are without government, this natural condition is a state of war of "everyone against everyone." Hence, human beings are motivated by fear to do anything to preserve themselves. Of course, as Hobbes emphasizes, the only way to truly achieve this end is to establish a sovereign power that will be able to coerce and overawe them all. Human beings, Achtenberg explains, become good citizens because they fear the way in which sovereign power will avenge violations of the social contract. Human beings "become just, then, not by developing our passions ... but by channeling them: once all significant power is in the hands of the sovereign, our brute, ineradicable fear of death is redirected away from every person and to the sovereign, since he is now the most fearful person there is." The problem then for Hobbes is not really the suppression of the passions--they are after all part of what it means to be human--but the redirection of human emotions.
Additionally, Achtenberg includes Immanuel Kant and Friedrich Nietzsche amongst those who maintain that ethical and emotional development entail "the suppression or channeling of intellect and emotion" (p. 7). Kant, Achtenberg argues, holds that "virtue is force against that natural inclination to violate the law." Appealing to reason, Kant argues that to act virtuously requires the suppression of the emotions. Nietzsche, on the other hand, contends that since the intellect in the search for truth has always acted to promote an other-worldly perspective--one that denies the truth of this world--the intellect must be surpassed; "untruth," according to Achtenberg, "is a condition of life" for Nietzsche.
In contrast to those sources that have in various ways called for the suppression, repression, channeling, and redirection of the emotions or the intellect, Achtenberg asserts that Aristotle belongs to that group of thinkers who maintain that "ethical or emotional development requires the development of intellect and emotion." Indeed, she asserts, Aristotle does not distinguish "emotional or ethical development"; they are "the same for him." Following Aristotle, "virtue," Achtenberg insists, involves choice and is defined as "a settled disposition to choose well." "Choice" (prohairesis) however, is not merely understood as simple desire, but as "deliberate desire," i. e., "desire that has been shaped and informed by deliberation" (p. 7). Still, choice is not considered to be the precursor of the Stoic notions of "'assent' / 'consent'" or the modern conception of the faculty of will (n. 2, p. 191). Instead of thinking of Aristotle's conception of choice as an antecedent to the faculty of will that, given time, eventually achieves true completion in some conception of the faculty of will, Achtenberg understands these notions--"deliberate desire," "assent / consent," and "the faculty of will"--as "members of a family of concepts that have related meanings and functions." Thus, "virtue ... requires both the development, not the suppression, of emotion and the development, not the suppression, of intellect. Emotions are shaped and developed by deliberation and, more broadly, by practical insight (phronēsis) as a whole" (p. 7). "Deliberation," involves more than coming to some sort of a decision about our needs and desires; for Aristotle, Achtenberg stipulates, deliberation means "good deliberation," that is, "the kind of deliberation that results in a decision for the mean not for one of the extremes." Again, Achtenberg insists that cognition involved in ethical virtue and emotion is not simply the cognition of the salient particulars, but it involves the perception of the value of the salient particulars.
"Value," as Achtenberg uses the term, is "a broad term" for what philosophers find "evaluatively positive." Although she underscores the fact that for Aristotle they are not categories, she distinguishes "two principal types of value," namely, "the good and the beautiful" (pp. 7 and 8). Following Aristotle, Achtenberg identifies the "good" with "telos or teleion" (p. 8). Quite clearly, telos or the good is important to her understanding of Aristotle's ethics and leads her to consider the relationship between ethical theory and metaphysics; indeed, she argues that, for Aristotle, ethical theory must rely on "extra-ethical principles found in metaphysics, physics, and psychology" (p. 86). Although she does not promote value realism in her work, she understands Aristotle to hold the view that "value is real, but relational" (p. 8). Indeed, one of the stated goals of her essay is "to discuss the importance of the awareness of a certain kind of relatedness for the development of ethical virtue ... for what we may call 'character development' or, simply, 'emotional development.'" Often been ignored by current thinkers, the "type of relatedness" that concerns her is the relation that "a telos has to things whose telos it is." It is one of the "great discoveries," attributable to both Plato and Aristotle, and Aristotle names it "'entelecheia' and 'energeia.'" The relational character of value, then, is grounded, according to Achtenberg, in specific situations such that what is perceived to be "valuable in varying contexts itself varies in complex and sometimes unexpected ways." This kind of relatedness, and here she is thinking specifically of Aristotle, is one in which an individual thing or person "is not replaced or destroyed by another, but is developed, enriched, or enabled to flourish" (pp. 8 and 9). In contradistinction to a thinker like Hobbes for whom the other is, at least in the state of nature, to be avoided at all costs for fear of annihilation, for Achtenberg, this implies that the other could be understood as "an opportunity to fulfill one's own deepest aims" (p. 8).
Achtenberg identifies two contemporary conceptions of value. While some claim that since "value is not fact, it is not anything at all," other thinkers maintain that "since value is not fact, it is ... a human creation." The former, she associates with what until recently was known as Analytic or Anglo-American philosophy; the latter, with Continental philosophy. The view that Achtenberg wishes to promote, namely, that "the cognitive component of ethical virtue and of emotion is not just cognition of particulars but of their value" presents difficulties for both views. If value is not fact, i. e., if value is nothing, then it is not possible to be cognizant of value; if, on the other hand, value has been created by human beings, then "cognitively" human creation of value is prior to value--"creation of value is more ... fundamental than" the cognition of value (p. 9). Nonetheless, Achtenberg agues that value, as understood by Aristotle, is closer to the first view of value. At the same time, the good and the beautiful, according to Achtenberg, are not categories as Aristotle understands that term; "evaluation is not categorization." Rather, if one designates something as beautiful or good, one recognizes "that it shares in a kind of relatedness in which one thing or person is not replaced or destroyed by another, but is enriched, developed, or enabled to flourish."
Turning to the Metaphysics (IX. 6), Achtenberg argues that since the relatedness in which she is interested cannot be defined, it is identified by examining the particulars to arrive at a principle in a specific given case, i.e., relatedness "becomes clear in different cases by induction," but we become cognizant of this relatedness by analogy. In other words, "awareness of value" turns out to be "awareness of analogy." Achtenberg interprets Aristotle's discussion of the good (Nicomachean Ethics, I. 6) to hold that "since the good means telos," "good is not univocal"; rather, good is "an analogical equivocal"; indeed, as she argues, it is an "imprecise analogical equivocal" (p. 18). Following Aristotle, then, Achtenberg insists that "the cognitive component of ethical virtues and of emotion is not just perception of particulars ... but is perception of a certain recurring relationship between particulars. The virtuous person's practical perception is perception of an analogy" (p. 9). For Achtenberg's reading of Aristotle's ethical theory, while "good and beautiful are" not the same, they are "principles of wholeness or completeness" and that means "practical perception is perception of particulars as parts of larger wholes." Hence, while Marcus Aurelius deconstructs wholes to focus on the particular (i. e., the scrumptious dinner is ignored to focus on the body of the dead animal), Aristotle argues that virtuous action "requires the imaginative construction" of wholes; "the virtuous person," Achtenberg writes:
sees particulars in the light of the wholes they could compose: the food before me in terms of my overall bodily health; the dangerous action I must pursue in terms of victory in battle; another person in terms of the joint activities we could engage in; my current activities in terms of the life goals I wish to attain; and, in general, every event, situation, and thing in terms of an overall developed and flourishing life.
Achtenberg's stated goal in her essay, then, is to examine "the importance of the awareness of a certain kind of relatedness for the development of ethical virtue," by which she means "character" or "emotional" development (p. 8).
One of the main reasons that scholars are currently interested in Aristotle's ethics is precisely this: that virtue does not involve the repression, suppression, channeling, or redirection of emotions or the intellect, but that "virtue results ... from the development of our intellectual capacity to see value, and to see it in more and more rich and complex ways in the particular situations that confront us" (p. 10). Unlike some of the moralists who Achtenberg discusses, Aristotle does not want us to repress our emotions or our intellects; rather, the philosopher promotes "a harmonious life" for human beings--a life "in which what we want and what we think can, for the most part, be in accord." Still, Aristotle's conception of "enriching relatedness" does not provide the final word, for Achtenberg; indeed, she faults Aristotle for his "hierarchical" understanding and advocates "the implicit teachings of twentieth-century developmental psychology, according to which our sense of our self as a self and of an other as other are coterminous and that ... developmental theory is a rich source for our thinking about virtue theory today" (p. 11). Perhaps Achtenberg will develop the relation between current thinking in value theory and developmental psychology in the future.
Achtenberg's book is the work of a mature thinker; it is confident and self-conscious. Achtenberg perceives her work to address and to resolve "certain long-standing interpretive problems," for example, the problem of the proper relation "between metaphysics and ethics for Aristotle." She also examines the importance of Aristotle's conception of virtue as a mean; virtue understood as a mean is not insignificant and it can inspire us to action. Clearly, those who are interested in the contemporary debates in ethical theory will benefit from Achtenberg's work and her willingness to engage current thinkers in the field, but those specifically interested in ancient philosophy and the history of philosophy will also profit from her careful reading of Aristotle and her analysis of his ethical works in relation to the entire history of the field. One of the greatest values of her essay and, indeed, in my mind, of any interpretive work is that it invites us to rethink the work of a great philosopher; it drives us back to the original text. Back to Aristotle!
© 2008 J. F. Humphrey
J. F. Humphrey, Ph. D., North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University