Annals of Ethics
Online ISSN : 2434-4699
Volume 69
Showing 1-12 articles out of 12 articles from the selected issue
  • The Significance of the Skeptical Reservation in On the Laws(De legibus), book 1
    Masaru YASUDA
    2020 Volume 69 Pages 97-111
    Published: 2020
    Released: May 24, 2021
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS
     In his dialogue On the Laws(De legibus), Marcus Tullius Cicero(106─43 B. C.)argues that laws should be something which, when adopted by the people, would allow them to live happy, honorable lives. In the first part(‘Part A’)of book 1, Cicero provides the theoretical foundation for this conception, embodied by the Stoic cosmology. In the second part(‘Part B’), Cicero argues for natural justice independently of this cosmology. In both parts, the naturalness of justice means that justice is common to all. Yet, in Part B, this point does not mean that there is a common ideal state which only a few can correctly recognize as justice, as it does in Part A. Rather, in Part B, all people, including bad people, recognize the basic feature of justice: its naturalness. This change in conclusion cannot be accounted for if, as scholars tend to believe, Part B is a mere appendix, i. e., a repetition of Cicero’s conclusion in Part A, achieved by refuting possible alternatives to his view.  In order to provide a reasonable explanation for this change, I intend to start by highlighting the fact that Cicero regards the arguments in both parts as necessary for achieving the aim of this work, i. e., the preservation of the mixed constitution, wherein all people judge what is just or not without leaving such judgments to the few aristocratic leaders. On this basis, I will argue that it is necessary for Cicero to suspend the conclusion in Part A and modify it in Part B, because Part A concludes that the naturalness of justice cannot be recognized by all. The skeptical reservation put forward in Part A seems at first sight to be precisely the perplexing and superficial pretense that scholars considered it to be in the past. Yet, in fact it is necessary. Cicero needs to argue for natural justice as he did in Part B, not A, in order to achieve the overall aim of the work and present laws which can preserve the mixed constitution, i. e., the laws whose justness all people can judge and adopt by their own judgment. In this way, Cicero’s skeptical strategy enables him to evade some ideas from Greek philosophers and unfold his political thought philosophically.
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  • Autour de la théorie de l’imagination
    Wataru AKIHO
    2020 Volume 69 Pages 113-127
    Published: 2020
    Released: May 24, 2021
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS
     En se fondant entièrement sur la détermination principale de l’esprit humain comme « l’idée même, ou connaissance du Corps humain », la deuxième partie de l’Éthique traite de la nature de l’esprit et de ce que peut l’esprit, c’est-à-dire des divers genres de connaissance. Même chez les commentateurs éminents, cependant, se trouvent une incompréhension à l’égard de cette détermination principale et un malentendu sur le mécanisme de la connaissance imaginative qui constitue l’opération élémentaire de l’esprit humain. Cette incompréhension, à notre avis, revient à celle qui concerne la distinction entre l’idée ou la connaissance qui est l’esprit et la connaissance engendrée par l’esprit. Or, cette distinction, ainsi que le mécanisme de la connaissance imaginative, résulte de la manière dont se produit l’esprit humain à partir de Dieu ou de la Nature qui est la cause de toutes choses. Ou, plus précisément, elle résulte de la place occupée par l’esprit à l’intérieur du processus global qui produit toutes choses naturelles, y compris le Corps humain et les autres corps.  C’est pourquoi, dans le présent article, saisissant d’abord la place de l’esprit humain dans le processus global de la production de la Nature tout entière, et ensuite, faisant l’analyse du mécanisme de la connaissance imaginative en considérant la distinction entre l’idée qui est l’esprit et la connaissance engendrée par l’esprit, nous examinerons la structure fondamentale de l’esprit humain selon l’Éthique, et mettrons au clair les propriétés que l’esprit et ses opérations doivent avoir inévitablement en raison de la place occupée par l’esprit dans le processus de la production. Ainsi, à travers notre analyse, nous tenterons de montrer que la théorie de l’imagination dans l’Éthique nous fait comprendre, en en montrant les raisons ou les causes, l’état naturel de notre manière de vivre: nous devons vivre en nous plaçant dans la perspective ouverte par notre corps et nous ne pouvons vivre qu’avec l’illusions et les hallucinations inévitables.
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  • Was Nietzsche Really the ‘Calliclean’?
    Yuki AZUMAYA
    2020 Volume 69 Pages 129-143
    Published: 2020
    Released: May 24, 2021
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS
     About 60 years ago, in his essay “Socrates, Callicles, and Nietzsche,” E. R. Dodds argued that Nietzsche’s thought had been inspired by that of Callicles in Plato’s Gorgias, i. e. Nietzsche was the heir to Callicles. Although this claim has had a strong influence up to the present, it seems to remain controversial. This article aims to refute Dodds’ view by examining his arguments and to demonstrate that Nietzsche was by no means the ‘Calliclean.’  In presenting his claim, Dodds made four arguments:(a)Nietzsche’s “blonde beast” is equal to Callicles’ “lion.”(b)Both uphold “φύσις[physis]against νόμος [nomos].”(c)Nietzsche says, like Callicles, what nomos prescribes is a morality of slaves. Nietzsche’s men of resentment “are precisely” Callicles’ “many,” or the weak who preach equality.(d)As Callicles has his own conception of the morality which suits the master class, so Nietzsche claims the necessity of a morality of masters “beyond good and evil,” or within good and bad: Nietzsche defines his “will to power” as “Haben- und Mehrhabenwollen[will to have and have more],” which is inspired by Calliclean term “πλεονεξία[desire to have more].” For Callicles, “τὰς ἐπιθυμίας μὴ κολάζειν[not to suppress desires]” is normative, so is to live in accordance with the “will to power” for Nietzsche.  Each of these, however, is based merely on word similarities. Systematical examination of the contexts in which Nietzsche used Calliclean terms will lead to the completely opposite conclusions: The “blonde beast” differs from Callicles’ “lion,” and Nietzsche does not uphold physis. According to Nietzsche, what nomos prescribes is a morality of masters. Callicles’ “many” are not men of resentment in Nietzsche’s terminology because the latter who preach slave morality are also in master morality. Nietzsche’s master and slave morality are thus not contradictory concepts; both are to be criticized for him. Further, Nietzsche raised “will to power” not as the norm but as the “primordial fact of all history,” the object of accusation.  In conclusion, Nietzsche’s thought is not compatible with that of Callicles: Nietzsche was by no means the ‘Calliclean.’
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  • Its Foundation, Problems, and Meanings
    Yosuke HAMADA
    2020 Volume 69 Pages 145-159
    Published: 2020
    Released: May 24, 2021
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS
     Although Ernst Cassirer’s concern is primarily focused on epistemology, he wrote several texts on the history of ethics(especially classical German ethics). He also emphasizes that ethics plays a central role in Immanuel Kant’s philosophy, a philosopher whom he greatly respected. Furthermore, the later Cassirer─as a Jew in exile from Nazi Germany─came to assert that a new construction of ethics that can be effective against real social problems is an inevitable philosophical task for his day. However, he did not produce any work explicating his own system of ethics. Why? Beginning with this question, I demonstrate that Cassirer, nevertheless, laid the fundamental foundation of his(unwritten)ethics by widening the application field of Kantian “moral freedom” and that this foundation can be formulated as follows: in order to combat mythical consciousness( symbolic form), which is the only ethical(and social)danger in human life, man must use and promote other kinds of consciousness(symbolic form), such as religious, artistic, linguistic, or scientific consciousness. I then point out some possible problems with this ethical foundation such as the inconsistent variation in his explanations of mythical consciousness in order to directly and exclusively relate the danger of this consciousness to the problems of Nazi Germany; the optimistic view that all types of human consciousness, except for mythical, are morally good; and the lack of serious consideration for actual and concrete social problems or biological and animal elements in human life. Finally, I indicate that what we could learn from these(possible)problems and Cassirer’s attitude toward ethics is, broadly speaking, as follows: we should remind ourselves that one of philosophy’s key tasks is to construct ethics that is effective against real social problems; furthermore, it would not be easy to satisfactorily fulfill this task if one is not prepared in advance or does not take into consideration the real and concrete lives and tangible problems of human existence seriously.
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  • A perspective from Heidegger’s Being and Time
    Hiroshi TAKAI
    2020 Volume 69 Pages 161-174
    Published: 2020
    Released: May 24, 2021
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS
     What makes our actions intentional? It seems easy to answer this question. It is intention. What, then, is intention? Simply, it is a mental state. Someone gets an intention in her mind─a mental state. And following that intention, she takes an intentional action.  This basic view of intentional action, however, raises some questions, because it misses some actions that we can certainly recognize as intentional. For example, we can imagine a male professor who behaves rudely only toward women. Since his behaviors appear to be selective, we are inclined to judge his sexist behaviors as intentional. However, the professor might not be aware of the disposition of his own actions, and would deny that they are intentional. Certainly, he does not act with the intention of behaving rudely, yet it is unacceptable to think that his behaviors are perfectly unintentional. We therefore need a more inclusive explanation than the basic view above.  Martin Heidegger’s Being and Time provides us with such an alternative explanation. In this book, he analyzes our ordinary actions and develops a unique theory about intentional actions that does not rely on the existence of intentions as mental states. In this study, we try to clarify and evaluate Heidegger’s theory of intentional actions.  Heidegger’s theory contains three main aspects. First, what makes our action intentional is the fact that that our action is relevant to our own commitment. Second, we are not transparently aware of where we commit ourselves. Third, whether some actions are relevant to one’s commitment or not is objectively defined. Combining these theses, Heidegger constructs an attractive theory about intentional action, and his theory can explain more inclusively what makes our actions intentional. The male professor above has almost unconsciously committed himself to being a “male person” and to the idea that males are superior to females─and his sexist behaviors are therefore relevant to his commitment, which forms who he is, in part. According to Heidegger’s perspective, the professor’s behaviors are actually intentional actions.
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  • Shuichi NYUYA
    2020 Volume 69 Pages 175-189
    Published: 2020
    Released: May 24, 2021
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS
     This paper examines Adorno’s ideas about sexuality and the body. While this approach is quite unprecedented in Japan, it is a theme that has been discussed frequently in Europe and the United States.  Opinions are divided among modern women philosophers and feminists about Adorno, whose handling is troublesome. This is because he criticized masculinist values, which had led Western rationalism, while also continuing to obsess over the dichotomy of masculine and feminine principles─naturally with reservations ─as one would find in his indifferent stance on homosexuality. In addition, Adorno only made an insufficient compromise on feminine experiences(as he perceived them), be they about Eros or physical pain. This paper attempts to elucidate this contradiction and inconsistency.  This paper considers the contradictions in Adorno’s views on sexual love as something he partly expressed intentionally. He performatively and thoroughly acted as a man, as it were, to reveal its impasse and seize the opportunity for a dialectic self-transformation. Specifically, this approach is observed in Adorno’s disclosure on the weakness of feminine men, who should be oriented toward strength, while showing empathy to determined women who stress their weaknesses and troubles of not being able to entirely become men.  However, Adorno is resistant about completely dismantling his stance as a man. This is probably because he had a premonition that the opportunity of self-destruction, which is promoted by an open female stance, could lure people into a trap of violence. For Adorno, this in itself is nothing other than masochism, which feminine men, who are latent homosexuals, have fallen into.
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  • Speech-act Theory in the Early Hare’s Works
    Junya TOMITA
    2020 Volume 69 Pages 191-204
    Published: 2020
    Released: May 24, 2021
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS
     It could be said that universalizability is an accepted and plausible thesis for moral discourse. It claims that value-judgments are valid only if they are universalizable. One would not fail to notice that it was R. M. Hare who, in line with Kant, built a unique theory upon the idea of universalizability. Hare presented this thesis not as a substantial claim in normative ethics, but as one based on ‘logic,’ which is counted as an innovation in the history of ethics.  Nevertheless, Hare’s argument for this thesis is said to contain a difficulty. According to traditional interpretations, Hare’s second major work Freedom and Reason(FR)left a logical leap. Hare in FR, they say, claims value-judgments are universalizable because value-words have descriptive meaning. However, the trivial fact of descriptive meaning does not logically entail such normative requirements which the universalizability thesis implies.  This paper will argue that these traditional interpretations overlook the continuity in Hare’s ethics, namely between his first major work Language of Morals( LM)and FR. The argument for normative requirements of value-judgments in FR presupposes the argument for universalizability in LM. In LM, Hare did argue value-judgments are felicitous only if done in a universalizable manner, for making value-judgments is a form of speech act, i. e. ‘decision of principle.’ Given this, one will easily understand why universalizability as felicity necessarily involve the normative requirements of value-judgements. Put in another way, one will not be able to understand the argument in FR without understanding the one in LM.  Hare submitted the universalizability thesis as a ‘logical’ thesis, and the word ‘logic’ here has a wider connotation, which includes internal rules of practice in which we all are engaged. And this indicates Hare’s philosophical insight that why and how we should universalize our value-judgements can only be grasped from the point of view which we have as participants of normative practice.
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  • Kohei NISHIKAWA
    2020 Volume 69 Pages 205-217
    Published: 2020
    Released: May 24, 2021
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS
     Dans cet article, nous examinerons la pensée de Foucault sur la loi et le droit et celle de Deleuze, faisant constamment référence au diagramme que celui-ci présente dans son oeuvre sur Foucault. On est encline à souligner, dans les études sur la philosophie française contemporaine, des différences entre ces deux philosophes. Mais, il y a des points communs remarquables dans leurs pensées juridiques, même s’il semble qu’on les ait négligés. Cet article a donc pour but d’éclaircir leur orientation commune dans ce domaine. À cette fin, nous commencerons par mettre en évidence l’interprétation que Deleuze donne de Foucault, et constaterons qu’il est possible de retrouver deux types de loi dans la pensée de celui-ci: une loi stable et une loi instable. Celle-ci, caractérisée comme une réponse à « l’autre », joue un rôle important au moment de la genèse d’une loi ou d’un droit. Puis, nous montrerons que cet aspect de la loi peut se rapporter au thème de « rapport à soi » dont s’occupe Foucault dans ses dernières années. Enfin, nous traiterons de la pensée juridique de Deleuze développée par le terme « jurisprudence », et montrerons qu’elle aussi répond à « l’autre » et s’accompagne du devenir.  Nous pourrons extraire de ce qui précède deux points communs entre Deleuze et Foucault: d’abord, tous les deux donnent de l’importance aux processus de fabrication de nouveaux lois et droits à travers la réponse donnée aux cas singuliers, plutôt qu’à travers de simples applications des lois stables; ensuite, ils supposent l’un et l’autre que le sujet n’est pas un sujet tout fait et universel, mais un étant qui se change sans cesse, affecté par le singulier. En bref, le processus de création des lois et droits implique l’éthique de la subjectivation en tant que devenir autre.
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  • la lecture de « l’être-essence de lumière » dans Phénoménologie de l’esprit par Derrida
    Takuma OBARA
    2020 Volume 69 Pages 219-232
    Published: 2020
    Released: May 24, 2021
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS
     Cette étude traite de la discussion du « brûle-tout » dans Glas(1974)par Derrida et vise à l’élucider à partir de la discussion sur la loi et la justice par le dernier Derrida. L’argument du « brûle-tout », développé sur la base de la lecture de « l’être-essence de lumière » dans Phénoménologie de l’esprit de Hegel, est un principal dans Glas et difficile à comprendre. Derrida dit que des recherches déconstructives ont eu jusqu’à maintenant et auront aussi dès maintenant une problématique du droit, de la loi et de la justice comme leur lieu le plus propre. Suivant cette déclaration, on peut lire la discussion du « brûle-tout » par analogie avec celle de la loi et de la justice.  D’abord, la justice derridienne dénonce la violence au moment de la fondation du système légale. L’établissement de la loi est toujours un coup de force en tant qu’il se fait à un lieu sans aucune loi et exclut « l’autre ». La déconstruction commence vers cet autre, et à cet égard elle est la justice. Ensuite, dans Glas, cet autre est discuté comme le « brûle-tout », celui est la consumation insignifiante qui brûle tout complètement, ne laisse rien et n’accumule pas d’histoire. Quand le sujet comme un pour-soi y apparaît, le sens naît et la philosophie ouvrit. Avec cette fondation de la philosophie, la consommation inutile antérieure serait forclose et enterrée.  Derrida dans Glas recherche ce moment, c’est-à-dire l’apparition du sujet comme la fondation de la philosophie. À partir d’un mot du texte hégélien, « Opfer (sacrifice)», Derrida découvert que le brûle-tout de la lumière se sacrifie pour la naissance du sujet. Pour la fondation de la philosophie, l’autre se sacrifie, se donne. Il s’éclaire ainsi que l’argument du « brûle-tout » décrit non seulement la forclusion de l’autre, mais aussi son intervention(donation de soi)dans la naissance de la philosophie.
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  • Kenta ISHIBASHI
    2020 Volume 69 Pages 233-247
    Published: 2020
    Released: May 24, 2021
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS
     Yamaga Soko criticizes the lack of practicality of Neo-Confucianism and is known as a thinker who emphasizes“ daily use ”. However, if you think in detail, there is still a lot of doubt about the position of “daily use” in the philosophy of conduct. Of particular importance is the relationship between “daily use” and “the saint’s way”. To date, no studies have clarified this relationship.  Looking at his understanding of the conduct of both, there is a contradiction between “the saint’s way”, which has transcendence that transcends the era, and “daily use” that has individuality depending on the era. As a clue to resolving this contradiction, this paper focused on the discussion about “Taikyoku”. In this context, Soko has criticized Zhou’s interpretation of the time of “Taikyoku”, and has developed the “Taikyoku” theory that all coexist simultaneously. The act says that “Tenchi” is also “Taikyoku”, and “Tenchi” is regarded as non-temporal. And since the saints are based on their “Tenchi”, “the saint’s way” has timeless transcendence.  However, ordinary people cannot recognize “Tenchi” as a non-temporal thing, but have to recognize things in the eyes in order. As a result, the idea of time occurs in human recognition. “daily use“ is a phase in the idea of this time. Being committed to such “daily use” means that we believe we have to live in human perception, which is different from the original way of “Tenchi”. We can make such a claim because we believe that individuality and the whole are united. The “Taikyku” theory of the conduct is that all the people exist at the same time, and individual and transcendence exist at the same time as one. Therefore, living the perception of people who are only individual leads to the whole. That is why “saint ’s way” and “daily use”, which have contradictory personalities, are compatible with each other.  Background of such thought is criticism of the idea that individuality and transcendence are separated temporally and individuality is only provisional. This is because such a way of thinking ignores the existence of diverse people.
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  • “I have found the way of the warrior in death”
    Taisuke UENO
    2020 Volume 69 Pages 249-262
    Published: 2020
    Released: May 24, 2021
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS
     This paper explains how Yamamoto Jōchō interpreted the teaching “I have found the way of the warrior in death” for himself. This teaching is generally interpreted as helping warriors find the determination to die. However, it entailed for Jōchō a self-contradictory situation. Despite his insistence that warriors had to die, Jōchō was, of course, still alive when he pronounced the teaching. In such a situation─espousing a teaching on death yet surviving his master─he arrived at a profound insight into life’s meaning after deep contemplation. Approaching this teaching from this perspective allows for a meaningful reinterpretation of this purportedly “radical”, and “dangerous” teaching.  Jōchō could not commit suicide upon his master’s death because his master had forbidden it. He therefore decided upon world-renunciation instead. After his symbolic death through world-renunciation, he anguished over having to continue living without his master. His teaching must therefore be interpreted in this light: Jōchō was suffering through survival.  In retrospect, there were two remarkable events in his life. One was the experience of acquiring meaning for his life through a command: his master requested that Jōchō served at his side. Jōchō looked upon himself as a “worthless” retainer but decided to devote his life to his master. The other event was a miracle. Jōchō had a sudden premonition and reached his master to be with him at his death. This demonstrated for Jōchō, his unity, body and soul, with his master. Jōchō realized that he had already become an authentic “Nabeshima retainer” by becoming an authentic retainer to his master. These moments generated an existential conflict between committing suicide and surviving because of his master’s prohibition. Seen from the perspective of this existential problem, Jōchō’s teaching should be understood as a confession of his anguished self-suffering based on this ambivalence rather than a radical enjoinment of the warrior to embrace death.
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  • A study of the background of his ethical theory
    Keisuke HATTORI
    2020 Volume 69 Pages 263-276
    Published: 2020
    Released: May 24, 2021
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS
     The purpose of this paper is to examine Watsuji Teturo’s unpublished draft “Ethics” in order to shed light on developments in his ethical theory. The draft, which is archived in the National Diet Library, is assumed to be a follow-up of his 1931 paper that bears the same title. However, to our best knowledge, the philosophical and historiographical significance of the text has not been studied up to now. Therefore, this study would be the first attempt to analyze the draft’s significance.  The draft is composed of three chapters in analogy to the 1937 and 1942 volumes of Watsuji’s magnum opus “Ethics”. The two works are distinct in terms of Watsuji’s definition of ‘ethics’(rinri-gaku): the draft defines ‘ethics’ as ‘the study of human being,’ whereas the book defines as ‘the study of the ethos’(rinri). The difference suggests that in the draft Watsuji had yet to develop his understanding of human beings in relation to ‘ethos’ as their ontological ground. The draft does not go beyond an attempt at grasping the essence of humanity in terms of its social nature, thereby describing actual human beings as social dynamisms.  The above suggests that the main characteristics of Watsuji’s magnum opus consists in its purpose to reveal the nature of ‘ethos’, thereby describing human beings as its products. In other words, it reveals the dual nature of humanity by depicting ‘ethos’ as a dialectical relation between individuals and society. Nevertheless, previous studies tend to neglect the updated definition of humanity, thus overemphasizing the social aspect of human beings. This misinterpretation is probably due researchers’ obliviousness of the existence of Watsuji’s unpublished draft, which sheds light on the intellectual development of his ‘ethics.’
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