Date of Award

3-15-2010

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Philosophy

First Advisor

Sebastian Rand - Committee Chair

Second Advisor

Andrew Altman - Committee Member

Third Advisor

Jessica Berry - Committee Member

Abstract

Recent scholarship on Hegel has employed the Wittgensteinian concept of a "form of life" in order to explain how sociality shapes and determines the reflective practices of self-conscious individuals. However, few of these scholars have considered how the non-reflective aspects of inhabiting a form of life- especially the abilities to form habits and to have feelings- contribute to the reflective aspects. In this thesis I argue that this oversight leads to serious exegetical and philosophical problems for making sense of Hegel's theory of ethical life. Not only does Hegel regard habit and feeling as playing a necessary role in the justification of our reflective practices, but he is right to do so, since, were he not to consider these factors, he could not account for how any of our moral claims could be justified.

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Philosophy Commons

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