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In Praise of Blame$
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George Sher

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780195187427

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2006

DOI: 10.1093/0195187423.001.0001

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What Blame Is

What Blame Is

(p.93) Six WHAT BLAME IS
In Praise of Blame

George Sher (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter develops a new account of what blame adds to the belief that someone has acted badly. According to the proposed account, the additional element consists of a set of dispositions (to become angry, express one’s disapproval, and the like) which are explained by the combination of the belief that the agent has acted badly and a desire that he not have done so. Unlike most desires, this one is oriented to the past rather than the future. Nevertheless, it remains a source of motivation that is capable of accounting for the blame-constituting dispositions.

Keywords:   blame, disposition, anger, reproach, desire, belief, backward-looking

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