Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=1739920
 


 



Must Virtue Be Particular?


Frederick Schauer


University of Virginia School of Law

January 13, 2011

LAW, VIRTUE & JUSTICE, A. Amaya, H. L. Ho, eds., Oxford, Hart Publishing, 2010
Virginia Public Law and Legal Theory Research Paper No. 2011-01

Abstract:     
A resurgence of interest in virtue ethics has spawned its counterpart in legal theory. But in both legal theory and in moral theory, virtue ethics’ focus on the character of the moral agent (or the legal decision-maker) has been coupled with the view that the virtuous deliberator or decision-maker is also particularistic, striving to make the best all-things-considered decision for the particular matter at hand. The particularism of modern virtue ethics fits well with virtue ethics’ Aristotelian roots, and also with the modern interest in particularism associated with philosophers such as Jonathan Dancy. But must virtue theory’s focus on the agent’s character necessarily be coupled with particularism? In this paper, a response to a paper by H.L. Ho, I question the almost universal conjunction of virtue ethics (and virtuous legal decision-making) with particularism, and suggest that virtue need not be particularistic, and that, in some contexts, virtue, and especially the virtue of humility about one’s own decision-making capacities, may lie in non-particularism.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 22

working papers series


Download This Paper

Date posted: January 14, 2011 ; Last revised: February 7, 2011

Suggested Citation

Schauer, Frederick, Must Virtue Be Particular? (January 13, 2011). LAW, VIRTUE & JUSTICE, A. Amaya, H. L. Ho, eds., Oxford, Hart Publishing, 2010; Virginia Public Law and Legal Theory Research Paper No. 2011-01. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1739920 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1739920

Contact Information

Frederick Schauer (Contact Author)
University of Virginia School of Law ( email )
580 Massie Road
Charlottesville, VA 22903
United States
434-924-6777 (Phone)

Feedback to SSRN


Paper statistics
Abstract Views: 3,351
Downloads: 334
Download Rank: 49,882

© 2014 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.  FAQ   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy   Copyright   Contact Us
This page was processed by apollo5 in 0.437 seconds