Naturalism's perils, naturalism's promises: A comment on appiah's experiments in ethics

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In his Experiments in Ethics, Appiah focuses mostly on the dimension of naturalism as a naturalism of deprivation - naturalism's apparent robbing us of aspects of the world that we had held dear. The aim of this paper is to remind him of that naturalism has a dimension of plenitude as well - its capacity to enrich our conception of the world as well. With regard to character, we argue that scientific psychology can help provide a conception of character as dynamic, in a way that may preserve many key aspects of eudaimonistic ethics from the situationists' challenge. With regard to intuition, we address Appiah's worry that naturalistic explanations of the sources of our intuitions may leave us feeling that those intuitions have been thereby debunked. We suggest that it may be that feeling of debunking that should itself be debunked.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)215-222
Number of pages8
Issue number3
StatePublished - Nov 2010


  • Experimental philosophy
  • Intuitions
  • Naturalism
  • Situationism
  • Virtue ethics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Philosophy
  • Health Policy


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