•  1967
    Arrogance
    with John D. Walker
    American Philosophical Quarterly 35 (4). 1998.
  •  724
    The lack of gender parity in philosophy has garnered serious attention recently. Previous empirical work that aims to quantify what has come to be called “the gender gap” in philosophy focuses mainly on the absence of women in philosophy faculty and graduate programs. Our study looks at gender representation in philosophy among undergraduate students, undergraduate majors, graduate students, and faculty. Our findings are consistent with what other studies have found about women faculty in philos…Read more
  •  611
    How Theories of Well-Being Can Help Us Help
    Journal of Practical Ethics 2 (2): 1-19. 2014.
    Some theories of well-being in philosophy and in psychology define people’s well-being in psychological terms. According to these theories, living well is getting what you want, feeling satisfied, experiencing pleasure, or the like. Other theories take well-being to be something that is not defined by our psychology: for example, they define well-being in terms of objective values or the perfection of our human nature. These two approaches present us with a trade-off: The more we define we…Read more
  •  193
    Philosophical Foundations of Wisdom
    In Robert Sternberg & Judith Gluek (eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of Wisdom, Cambridge University Press. pp. 10-39. 2019.
    Practical wisdom (hereafter simply ‘wisdom’), which is the understanding required to make reliably good decisions about how we ought to live, is something we all have reason to care about. The importance of wisdom gives rise to questions about its nature: what kind of state is wisdom, how can we develop it, and what is a wise person like? These questions about the nature of wisdom give rise to further questions about proper methods for studying wisdom. Is the study of wisdom the proper subje…Read more
  •  186
    Constructivism and wise judgment
    In Jimmy Lenman & Yonatan Shemmer (eds.), Constructivism in Practical Philosophy, Oxford University Press. pp. 195. 2012.
    In this paper I introduce a version of constructivism that relies on a theory of practical wisdom. Wise judgment constructivism is a type of constructivism because it takes correct judgments about what we have “all-in” reason to do to be the result of a process we can follow, where our interest in the results of this process stems from our practical concerns. To fully defend the theory would require a comprehensive account of wisdom, which is not available. Instead, I describe a constructivist …Read more
  •  171
    Wisdom and Perspective
    Journal of Philosophy 102 (4). 2005.
  •  131
    In Plato’s dialogue the Republic, Glaucon challenges Socrates to prove that the just (or moral) life is better or more advantageous than the unjust one. Socrates’s answer to the challenge is notoriously unsatisfying. Could new research on well-being in philosophy and psychology allow us to do better? After distinguishing two different approaches to the question “why be moral?” I argue that while new research on well-being does not provide an answer that would satisfy Glaucon, it does shed light …Read more
  •  117
    Value commitments and the balanced life
    Utilitas 17 (1): 24-45. 2005.
    According to critics such as Bernard Williams, traditional ethical theories render it impossible to lead good and meaningful lives because they emphasize moral duty or the promotion of external values at the expense of the personal commitments that make our lives worth living from our own perspective. Responses to this criticism have not addressed the fundamental question about the proper relationship between a person's commitments to moral values and her commitments to non-moral or personal val…Read more
  •  100
    The practical irrelevance of relativism
    Analysis 69 (4): 722-731. 2009.
    I learned a lot from reading Jesse Prinz's ambitious and entertaining book, The Emotional Construction of Morals. I think he’d be pleased to know that I learned many interesting things that I would not ordinarily find in a book of academic philosophy. Also, even when I disagreed with him, almost all of my questions were anticipated and addressed as the book proceeded, which is a very satisfying experience as a reader and high praise in philosophy. I say ‘almost all’ of my questions because there…Read more
  •  92
    How to Think About Virtue and Right
    Philosophical Papers 35 (2): 247-265. 2006.
    Robert Johnson argues that virtue ethical accounts of right action fail because they cannot take account of the fact that there are things we ought to do precisely because we do not possess virtuous character traits. Self-improving actions are his paradigm case and it would indeed be a problem if virtue ethics could not make sense of the propriety of self-improvement. To solve this serious problem, I propose that virtue ethics ought to define right action in terms of the virtuous agent's reasons…Read more
  •  84
    Substance and procedure in theories of prudential value
    Australasian Journal of Philosophy 85 (3). 2007.
    In this paper I argue that the debate between subjective and objective theories of prudential value obscures the way in which elements of both are needed for a comprehensive theory of prudential value. I suggest that we characterize these two types of theory in terms of their different aims: procedural (or subjective) theories give an account of the necessary conditions for something to count as good for a person, while substantive (or objective) theories give an account of what is good for a pe…Read more
  •  78
    Well-Being Policy: What Standard of Well-Being?
    Journal of the American Philosophical Association 1 (4): 712--733. 2015.
    ABSTRACT:This paper examines the norms that should guide policies aimed at promoting happiness or, more broadly, well-being. In particular, we take up the question of which conception of well-being should govern well-being policy, assuming some such policies to be legitimate. In answer, we lay out a case for ‘pragmatic subjectivism’: given widely accepted principles of respect for persons, well-being policy may not assume any view of well-being, subjectivist or objectivist. Rather, it should pro…Read more
  •  74
    Virtue and practical deliberation
    Philosophical Studies 111 (2): 147-172. 2002.
    The question of how to reason well is an important normative question,one which ultimately motivates some of our interest in the more abstracttopic of the principles of practical reason. It is this normative questionthat I propose to address by arguing that given the goal of an importantkind of deliberation, we will deliberate better if we develop certainvirtues. I give an account of the virtue of stability and I argue thatstability makes reasoners reason better. Further,I suggest at the end of …Read more
  •  73
    Practical Reason and the Stability Standard
    Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 5 (3): 339-354. 2002.
    In this paper I argue that one of the standards that governs practical reasoning is the stability standard. The stability standard, I argue, is a norm that is constitutive of practical reasoning: insofar as we do not take violations of this norm to be relevant considerations, we do not count as engaged in reasoning at all. Furthermore, I argue that it is a standard we can explicitly employ in order to deliberate about our ends or desires themselves. Importantly, this standard will not require th…Read more
  •  68
    Full information and ideal deliberation
    Journal of Value Inquiry 31 (3): 329-338. 1997.
    When we are confronted with choices we take to be important, choices that affect our more important ends or goals, we usually attempt to judge what would be best for us. We reflect on what is best for us when we have to decide such things as which college to attend, whether to go to graduate school or law school, whether to marry, or whether to take our parents in when they need care. When we make such decisions, we think about what will contribute to the best life for us. In thinking about the …Read more
  •  64
    Wisdom revisited: a case study in normative theorizing
    Philosophical Explorations 14 (3): 277-295. 2011.
    Extensive discussions of practical wisdom are relatively rare in the philosophical literature these days. This is strange given the theoretical and practical importance of wisdom and, indeed, the etymology of the word "philosophy." In this paper, we remedy this inattention by proposing a methodology for developing a theory of wisdom and using this methodology to outline a viable theory. The methodology we favor is a version of wide reflective equilibrium. We begin with psychological research on …Read more
  •  62
    In defense of reflection
    Philosophical Issues 23 (1): 223-243. 2013.
  •  60
    Humean heroism: Value commitments and the source of normativity
    Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 81 (4). 2000.
    This paper addresses the question "In virtue of what do practical reasons have normative force or justificatory power?" There seems to be good reason to doubt that desires are the source of normativity. However, I argue that the reasons to be suspicious of desire-based accounts of normativity can be overcome by a sufficiently sophisticated account. The position I defend in this paper is one according to which desires, or more generally, proattitudes, do constitute values and provide rational jus…Read more
  •  38
    Integrating philosophical and psychological approaches to well-being: The role of success in personal projects
    with Cianna Bedford-Petersen, Colin G. DeYoung, and Moin Syed
    Journal of Moral Education 48 (1): 84-97. 2019.
    Interdisciplinary research on the relation of well-being to personality, virtue and life experience is impeded by lack of agreement about the nature of well-being. Psychologists tend to reduce well-being to various subjective evaluations. Philosophers tend to reject these reductions but often do not agree among themselves. We believe most conceptions of well-being can agree that well-being involves success in one’s personal projects and that personal projects should be a central construct for we…Read more
  •  37
    This paper is a contribution to the debate about eudaimonism started by Kashdan, Biswas-Diener, King, and Waterman in a previous issue of The Journal of Positive Psychology. We point out that one thing that is missing from this debate is an understanding of the problems with subjective theories of well-being that motivate a turn to objective theories. A better understanding of the rationale for objective theories helps us to see what is needed from a theory of well-being. We then argue that a su…Read more
  •  34
    How can we live life wisely? Tiberius argues that we need to develop the kind of wisdom that emphasizes the importance of learning from experience. We need to care about things that sustain us and give us good experiences, have perspective on our successes and failures, and be moderately self-aware and cautiously optimistic about human nature.
  •  30
    Virtue Ethics: A Pluralistic View (Christine Swanton) (review)
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 72 (2): 494-497. 2006.
    Christine Swanton’s Virtue Ethics is a welcome addition to the newly flourishing field of virtue ethics. Swanton defends a rich and multifaceted virtue ethical theory that differs in interesting ways from the current paradigm, Aristotelian virtue ethics. The richness of her theory is, in part, dictated by her methodology: wide reflective equilibrium. Taking this methodology seriously, she draws on a wide range of scholarship not just in philosophy but also in psychiatry, psychology, sociology, a…Read more
  •  29
    Comments on John Doris, Talking to Our Selves: Reflection, Ignorance, and Agency
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 97 (3): 758-764. 2018.
  •  24
    Perspective: A Prudential Virtue
    American Philosophical Quarterly 39 (4). 2002.