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Shaping the Normative Landscape$
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David Owens

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199691500

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199691500.001.0001

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Blame and Guilt

Blame and Guilt

(p.25) 1 Blame and Guilt
Shaping the Normative Landscape

David Owens

Oxford University Press

Though neither blame nor guilt are themselves good or desirable, the fact that blame or guilt would be a good thing in certain circumstances is itself a good thing, at least in the context of certain relationships like friendship. Scanlon argues that apt blame tracks the value of such relationships. It is argued that apt blame is part of what gives such relationships their value. The superiority of value-constituting over value-tracking theories of blame becomes clear once we see that blame is a form of anger and distinguish the aptness of blame-as-anger from its accuracy. We also realize that apt blame has a wider scope than is usually imagined.

Keywords:   blame, anger, aptness, accuracy, guilt, T. M. Scanlon, value-tracking, value-constituting, friendship

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