- Peirce, Moral Cognitivism, and the Development of Character
- Transactions of the Charles S. Peirce Society: A Quarterly Journal in American Philosophy
- Indiana University Press
- Volume 50, Number 1, Winter 2014
- pp. 139-161
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- Additional Information
Proponents of moral cognitivism have recently looked to Peirce in order to supplement their position. That work focuses on what Peirce has to say about truth and inquiry and how these notions can help us better understand our beliefs and the verification thereof. This paper argues that the view of the moral cognitivist is incomplete if it is not accompanied by an explanation of how beliefs turn into actions. Such an explanation requires a description of how a resolution becomes a determination. That description necessarily includes an account of feeling (and thus Esthetics), since feelings are the means by which we navigate our environment. Ultimately, in order to ensure that our behavior is of the correct sort in the long run, we should be concerned with getting our feelings right so that we can develop the right habits and thus the right kind of moral character.