Resentment and Power: On the Social Dynamics of Blame

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Friday, 15 November, 2019 - 7:30 pm to Friday, 15 November, 2019 - 9:30 pm


Our practices of moral accountability involve reactive attitudes in the general key of anger, such as resentment and indignation. In this talk, Dr. Wallace will argue that these attitudes involve forms of social power and will consider the implications of this fact for the understanding and assessment of reactive blame. There are characteristic pathologies of blame that are intelligible when we see it as the exercise of social power. But the connection to power also helps us to see why it is important that we have these reactions in our emotional repertoire. Dr. R Jay Wallace holds the Judy Chandler Webb Distinguished Chair in Philosophy at the University of California, Berkeley. His visit to Kent State University is part of the Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar Program and is hosted by KSU Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa (Nu of Ohio) and the Department of Philosophy.