Maura Tumulty (Author)
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DescriptionIf I were a better human being, that person's voice wouldn't sound so shrill to me. Many of us may have had such thoughts. They give voice to the worrying intuition that if we were less affected by sexism and racism, or better at keeping our tempers, our fellow humans would look and sound differently to us. In Alien Experience, Maura Tumulty argues that we should take this sense of unease seriously. It is as philosophically significant as our unease over desires or fears that we disown. Making sense of this unease requires us to re-think the relation between experiences and standing commitments; to re-consider what we mean by self-control; and to attend to empirical questions about perception, attention, and tacit cognition. In taking up these issues, Alien Experience illuminates and questions a significant assumption that underlies debates in the philosophy of mind, moral psychology, and ethics: While we may be answerable (morally, ethically, legally) for our attitudes and emotions, we are not answerable in any interesting way for our perceptions and sensations. Tumulty argues that this assumption leads to a flattened view of the ways experiences are related to agency. Recognizing that we can be alienated from our experiences helps us appreciate distinctive opportunities for self-improvement.
Oxford University Press, USA
January 20, 2020
6.3 X 0.9 X 9.1 inches | 1.05 pounds
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About the Author
Maura Tumulty is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Colgate University. She received her PhD from the University of Pittsburgh, her MSc from the University of Edinburgh, and her BA from Williams College. She is interested in questions at the intersection of philosophy of mind and moralpsychology.