Moral Philosophy Seminar (Monday - Week 2, TT21)
We argue that relating to myself as me provides, as such, a reason to care about myself: grasping that an event involves me, instead of another, makes it matter in a special way. Further, this self-concern is not simply a matter of seeing in myself some instrumental value for other ends. We use as our foil a recent skeptical challenge to this view offered in Setiya 2015. We think the case against self-concern is powered by unwarrantedly narrow construal of two key notions. One is the notion of a first-personal way of relating to oneself. A narrow account of the first person in terms of special epistemic relations to oneself makes it easy to overlook a source of non-instrumental reasons of self-concern, located in the special relation a subject has to herself as agent. The other notion is that of self-concern itself. We show that the skeptical case rests in part on a slide towards neighbouring but distinct notions of egoism and selfishness. We also argue that Setiya’s notion of self-love, offered to capture the pre-theoretical intuition of self-concern, cannot do it justice.
The Seminar is going to be held via Microsoft teams. Please email one of the convenors below if you would like to attend.
Moral Philosophy Seminar Convenors: Ed Lamb and Jeremy Fix