A particularistic moral mind

Pierpaolo Marrone


Abstract: In this paper I offer some criticisms of Jonathan Dancy’s moral particularism. In Dancy’s version moral particularism states that there are neither general nor universal moral principles, that moral action is not the application of principles to particular cases, that moral reasoning has no motivational force because it deduces what must be done by moral principles, and that the agent who acts morally is not a person who has moral principles. However, Dancy’s proposal fails to explain the regularity of moral behavior and the function of stability that moral agents and moral psychology play within social cooperation, nor is it able to explain the possibility of moral progress.

Keywords: Jonathan Dancy; Moral Progress; Moral Psychology; Principles; Cooperation


La mente morale particolarista

Riassunto: In questo articolo espongo alcune critiche al particolarismo morale di Jonathan Dancy. Nella versione di Dancy il particolarismo morale afferma che non ci sono né principi morali generali né universali, che l’azione morale non è l’applicazione di principi a casi particolari, che il ragionamento morale non ha forza motivazionale perché deduce ciò che deve essere fatto dai principi morali, e che l’agente che agisce moralmente non è una persona che ha principi morali. Tuttavia, la proposta di Dancy non riesce a spiegare la regolarità del comportamento morale e la funzione di stabilità che gli agenti morali e la psicologia morale svolgono all’interno della cooperazione sociale, né è in grado di spiegare la possibilità del progresso morale.

Parole chiave: Jonathan Dancy; Progresso morale; Psicologia morale; Principi; Cooperazione

Parole chiave

Jonathan Dancy; Moral Progress; Moral Psychology; Principles; Cooperation

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.4453/rifp.2021.0010

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