Disunity of virtue


Journal Article

This paper argues against the unity of the virtues, while trying to salvage some of its attractive aspects. I focus on the strongest argument for the unity thesis, which begins from the premise that true virtue cannot lead its possessor morally astray. I suggest that this premise presupposes the possibility of completely insulating an agent's set of virtues from any liability to moral error. I then distinguish three conditions that separately foreclose this possibility, concentrating on the proposition that there is more to morality than virtue alone-that is, not all moral considerations are ones to which some virtue is characteristically sensitive. If the virtues are not unified, the situationist critique of virtue ethics also turns out to be more difficult to establish than some have supposed. © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Sreenivasan, G

Published Date

  • September 1, 2009

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 13 / 2-3

Start / End Page

  • 195 - 212

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1572-8609

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1382-4554

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1007/s10892-009-9048-0

Citation Source

  • Scopus