Cornell University

This is a past event. Its details are archived for historical purposes.

The contact information may no longer be valid.

Please visit our current events listings to look for similar events by title, location, or venue.

Moral Psychology Brown Bag Series

Tuesday, October 5, 2021 at 4:00pm to 5:00pm

VIA ZOOM

David Shoemaker

Professor, Sage School of Philosophy

Narcissism, Mockery, and the Architecture of Praise and Blame

ABSTRACT: In the philosophical literature on responsibility, writers invariably pair “praise and blame” as the relevant symmetrical positive and negative responses to responsible agents. In their ordinary connotations, however, they seem anything but symmetrical: blame hurts and so seems to require desert, demands a lot in response (guilt, remorse, apology, repair), is typically emotional, can be private, is most often moral in nature, can be mitigated by excuse, and can be quite dangerous, as over-blame can damage people psychologically. Praise, on the other hand, seems to involve none of these things: you can be aptly praised for things you don’t deserve (e.g., a beauty mark), it demands nothing, it can be delivered with no emotions whatsoever, it has to be expressed (so isn’t private), it’s most often nonmoral, excuses don’t mitigate it, and overpraise is psychologically innocuous. So pairing praise and blame as a symmetrical pair seems quite wrongheaded, as they just aren’t.

My aim in this talk will be to reveal the hidden symmetries between praise and blame. We will get there by starting with the overlooked dangers in overpraise — it often generates narcissism in young people — and I’ll go on from there to reveal a kind of blame in mockery that we engage in all the time and that fills a crucial symmetrical role on the negative side of praise and blame’s overall architecture.

Dial-In Information

https://cornell.zoom.us/j/97773876269?pwd=UG82TTlpaTg1WnZKaXR5bjd4Z0l1dz09

Subscribe
Google Calendar iCal Outlook
Event Type

Colloquium

Departments

Philosophy, Psychology

University Themes

Research

Tags

cascal, philcal, psychevents, cogscievents

Website

https://moralpsychologycornell.com

Hashtag

#moral psychology

Contact E-Mail

cogst@cornell.edu

Contact Name

Julie Simmons-Lynch

Contact Phone

607 255-6431

Speaker

David Shoemaker

Speaker Affiliation

Sage School of Philosophy

Dept. Web Site

https://philosophy.cornell.edu/david-shoemaker

Recent Activity