•  54
    Expanding Transformative Experience
    with Havi Carel
    European Journal of Philosophy 28 (1): 199-213. 2020.
    We develop a broader, more fine-grained taxonomy of forms of ‘transformative experience’ inspired by the work of L.A. Paul. Our vulnerability to such experiences arises, we argue, due to the vulnerability, dependence, and affliction intrinsic to the human condition. We use this trio to distinguish a variety of positively, negatively, and ambivalently valenced forms of epistemically and/or personally transformative experiences. Moreover, we argue that many transformative experiences can arise gra…Read more
  •  4
    Vice Epistemology (edited book)
    Routledge. 2020.
    Some of the most problematic human behaviors involve vices of the mind such as arrogance, closed-mindedness, dogmatism, gullibility, and intellectual cowardice, as well as wishful or conspiratorial thinking. What sorts of things are epistemic vices? How do we detect and mitigate them? How and why do these vices prevent us from acquiring knowledge, and what is their role in sustaining patterns of ignorance? What is their relation to implicit or unconscious bias? How do epistemic vices and systems…Read more
  •  305
    Epistemic Corruption and Social Oppression
    In Ian James Kidd, Quassim Cassam & Heather Battaly (eds.), Vice Epistemology, Routledge. forthcoming.
    I offer a working analysis of the concept of 'epistemic corruption', then explain how it can help us to understand the relations between epistemic vices and social oppression, and use this to motivate a style of vice epistemology, inspired by the work of Robin Dillon, that I call critical character epistemology.
  •  42
    Inner Virtue
    Philosophical Quarterly 69 (276): 641-644. 2019.
    Inner Virtue. By Bommarito Nicolas.
  •  7
    Suffering as Transformative Experience
    with Havi Carel
    In David Bain, Michael S. Brady & Jennifer Corns (eds.), The Philosophy of Suffering, Routledge. forthcoming.
    In this chapter we suggest that many experiences of suffering can be further illuminated as forms of transformative experience, using the term coined by L.A. Paul. Such suffering experiences arise from the vulnerability, dependence, and affliction intrinsic to the human condition. Such features can create a variety of positively, negatively, and ambivalently valanced forms of epistemically and personally transformative experiences, as we detail here. We argue that the productive element of suffe…Read more
  •  376
    Pathophobia, Illness, and Vices
    International Journal of Philosophical Studies 27 (2): 286-306. 2019.
    I introduce the concept pathophobia, to capture the range of morally objectionable forms of treatment to which somatically ill persons are subjected. After distinguishing this concept from sanism and ableism, I argue that the moral wrongs of pathophobia are best analysed using a framework of vice ethics. To that end I describe five clusters of pathophobic vices and failings, illustrating each with examples from three influential illness narratives.
  •  294
    Daoism, Humanity, and the Way of Heaven
    Religious Studies 56 111-126. 2020.
    I argue that Zhuangist Daoism manifests what I label the spiritual aspiration to emulation, and then use this to challenge some of John Cottingham's attempts to confine authentic spiritual experience to theistic traditions.
  • Feyerabend, Science, and Scientism
    In Karim Bschir & Jamie Shaw (eds.), Interpreting Feyerabend, Cambridge University Press. forthcoming.
    I argue that we can profitably understanding Feyerabend’s work in at least the latter half of his career in terms of a series of experiments with ways of conceptualising and criticising scientism, under the aegis of a ‘critique of scientific reason’. The critique of science’s self-understanding was the more sophisticated and successful, while the critique of scientific modernity was more erratic and less effective, due mainly to the failure to take up the necessary resources.
  •  387
    Admiration, attraction and the aesthetics of exemplarity
    Journal of Moral Education 48 (3): 369-380. 2019.
    The aim of this paper is to show that an aesthetics of exemplarity could be a useful component of projects of moral self-cultivation. Using some in Linda Zagzebski's exemplarism, I describe a distinctive, aesthetically-inflected mode of admiration called moral attraction whose object is the inner beauty of a persn - the expression of the 'inner' virtues or excellences of character of a person in 'outer' forms of bodily comportment that are experienced, by others, as beautiful. I then argue that …Read more
  •  100
    Mary Midgley argued that philosophy was a necessity, not a luxury. It's difficulties lie partly in the fact that, when doing it, we are struggling not only against the difficulty of the subject matter, but also certain tendencies within ourselves. I focus on two - one-way reductionism and myopic specialisation.
  •  72
    Review of Nicolas Bommarito, "Inner Virtue"
    Philosophical Quarterly. forthcoming.
    A review of Nicolas Bommarito's book, "Inner Virtue", which argues persuasively that our "inner states" - emotions, pleasures, attentional habits - can be virtuous if they manifest what he calls our "moral concerns".
  •  47
    Mystery and Humility (edited book)
    European Journal for Philosophy of Religion. 2012.
    This guest-edited special section explores the related themes of mystery, humility, and religious practice from both the Western and East Asian philosophical traditions. The contributors are David E. Cooper, John Cottingham, Mark Wynn, Graham Parkes, and Ian James Kidd.
  •  175
    A review of David E. Cooper's book, "Animals and Misanthropy", which argues that reflection on awful treatment of animals justifies a negative critical judgment on human life and culture.
  •  262
    ‘Following the Way of Heaven’: Exemplarism, Emulation, and Daoism
    Journal of the American Philosophical Association 6 (1): 1-15. 2020.
    Many ancient traditions recognise certain people as exemplars of virtue. I argue that some of these traditions incorporate a 'cosmic' mode of emulation, where certain of the qualities or aspects of the grounds or source of the world manifest, in human form, as virtues. If so, the ultimate objection of emulation is not a human being. I illustrate this with the forms of Daoist exemplarity found in the Book of Zhuangzi, and end by considering the charge that the aspiration to cosmic emulation is in…Read more
  •  98
    This Chapter challenges the common claim that vicious forms of argumentative practice, like interpersonal arrogance and discursive polarisation, are caused by martial metaphors, such as ARGUMENT AS WAR. I argue that the problem isn’t the metaphor, but our wider practices of metaphorising and the ways they are deformed by invidious cultural biases and prejudices. Drawing on feminist argumentation theory, I argue that misogynistic cultures distort practices of metaphorising in two ways. First, the…Read more
  •  182
    Animals, Misanthropy, and Humanity
    Journal of Animal Ethics 10 (1): 66. 2020.
    David. E. Cooper’s claim in Animals and Misanthropy is that honest reflection on the ways human beings treat and compare with animals encourages a dark, misanthropic judgment on humankind. Treatment of animals manifests a range of vices and failings that are ubiquitous and entrenched in our practices, institutions, and forms of life, organized by Cooper into five clusters. Moreover, comparisons of humans and animals reveals both affinities and similarities, including a crucial difference that an…Read more
  •  169
    Humility, Contingency, and Pluralism in the Sciences
    In Mark Alfano, Michael Lynch & Alessandra Tanesini (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Humility, Routledge. pp. 346-358. forthcoming.
    A chapter exploring the relations between humility and the sciences.
  •  442
    Deep Epistemic Vices
    Journal of Philosophical Research 43. 2018.
    Although the discipline of vice epistemology is only a decade old, the broader project of studying epistemic vices and failings is much older. This paper argues that contemporary vice epistemologists ought to engage more closely with these earlier projects. After sketching some general arguments in section one, I then turn to deep epistemic vices: ones whose identity and intelligibility depends on some underlying conception of human nature or the nature of reality. The final section then offers …Read more
  •  71
    Review of Paul Feyerabend, Philosophy of Nature
    Journal of the Philosophy of History 13 (2): 281-285. 2019.
  •  375
    Beautiful Bodhisattvas: The Aesthetics of Spiritual Exemplarity
    Contemporary Buddhism 18 (2): 331-345. 2017.
    The world’s spiritual traditions incorporate a variety of types of exemplar, persons who exemplify a life of aspiration to, or attainment of, spiritual goods. Within Buddhism, the range of exemplars includes monastics, boddhisattvas, the Zen masters, and the Buddha himself. Spiritual exemplars are typically described as having a distinctive form of bodily beauty, closely related to their ethical and spiritual qualities, that manifests as a form of radiance, luminosity, or charisma. Drawing on re…Read more
  •  102
    Beauty, Virtue, and Religious Exemplars
    Religious Studies 53 (2): 171-181. 2017.
    This paper explores the beauty of religious exemplars Ð those special persons whose conduct and comportment marks their life out as one that exemplifies a religious life. Such exemplars are consistently described as beautiful, but it is not clear how or why. I suggest that we can make sense of the aesthetically aspect of religious exemplarity by adopting a Ôvirtue-centricÕ theory of beauty that understands the beautiful in terms of the expression or manifestation of virtues. Religious exemplars…Read more
  •  48
    Pierre Duhem’s epistemic aims and the intellectual virtue of humility: a reply to Ivanova
    Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 42 (1): 185-189. 2011.
    David Stump has recently argued that Pierre Duhem can be interpreted as a virtue epistemologist. Stump’s claims have been challenged by Milena Ivanova on the grounds that Duhem’s ‘epistemic aims’ are more modest than those of virtue epistemologists. I challenge Ivanova’s criticism of Stump by arguing that she not distinguish between ‘reliabilist’ and ‘responsibilist’ virtue epistemologies. Once this distinction is drawn, Duhem clearly emerges as a ‘virtue-responsibilist’ in a way that complement…Read more
  •  264
    Resisters, Diversity in Philosophy, and the Demographic Problem
    Rivista di Estetica 64 118-133. 2017.
    The discipline of academic philosophy suffers from serious problems of diversity and inclusion whose acknowledgement and amelioration are often resisted by members of our profession. In this paper, I distinguish four main modes of resistance—naiveté, conservatism, pride, and hostility—and describe how and why they manifest by using them as the basis for a typology of types of ‘resister’. This typology can hopefully be useful to those of us trying to counteract such resistance in ways sensitive t…Read more
  •  420
    Healthcare Practice, Epistemic Injustice, and Naturalism
    with Havi Carel
    Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 84 1-23. 2018.
    Ill persons suffer from a variety of epistemically-inflected harms and wrongs. Many of these are interpretable as specific forms of what we dub pathocentric epistemic injustices, these being ones that target and track ill persons. We sketch the general forms of pathocentric testimonial and hermeneutical injustice, each of which are pervasive within the experiences of ill persons during their encounters in healthcare contexts and the social world. What’s epistemically unjust might not be only age…Read more
  •  193
    Pathocentric Epistemic Injustice and Conceptions of Health
    with Havi Carel
    In Benjamin Sherman & Stacey Goguen (eds.), Overcoming Epistemic Injustice: Social and Psychological Perspectives, Rowman and Littlefield. pp. 00-00. forthcoming.
    In this paper, we argue that certain theoretical conceptions of health, particularly those described as ‘biomedical’ or ‘naturalistic’, are viciously epistemically unjust. Drawing on some recent work in vice epistemology, we identity three ways that abstract objects (such as theoretical conceptions, doctrines, or stances) can be legitimately described as epistemically vicious. If this is right, then robust reform of individuals, social systems, and institutions would not be enough to secure epi…Read more
  •  138
  •  325
    Adversity, Wisdom, and Exemplarism
    Journal of Value Inquiry 52 (4): 379-393. 2018.
    According to a venerable ideal, the core aim of philosophical practice is wisdom. The guiding concern of the ancient Greek, Indian, and Chinese traditions was the nature of the good life for human beings and the nature of reality. Central to these traditions is profound recognition of the subjection to adversities intrinsic to human life. I consider paradigmatic exemplars of wisdom, from ancient Western and Asian traditions, and the ways that experiences of adversity shaped their life. The sugge…Read more