Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Social Dimensions of Moral Responsibility$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Katrina Hutchison, Catriona Mackenzie, and Marina Oshana

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780190609610

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190609610.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 22 October 2020

The Social Constitution of Agency and Responsibility

The Social Constitution of Agency and Responsibility

Oppression, Politics, and Moral Ecology

(p.110) 4 The Social Constitution of Agency and Responsibility
Social Dimensions of Moral Responsibility

Manuel R. Vargas

Oxford University Press

Culpability under oppression is puzzling. On the one hand, it seems callous to insist that someone’s being subject to oppression is never relevant to her culpability. On the other hand, responsible agency exists under systematic disadvantage; insisting that oppression always undermines a person’s culpability seems too forgiving and disrespectful to those agents. One philosophical challenge that grows out of reflecting on these matters is whether there is a way to reconcile the thought that agency is socially constituted—a product of circumstance—with the thought that some psychological configurations rightly underpin our condemnatory practices, while others do not. This chapter offers a framework for thinking about these issues, especially the question of culpable action under conditions of oppression. The account maintains that oppression matters for culpability in some cases and not in others, because culpability is a function of the properties of agents and the context that shapes their agency.

Keywords:   moral responsibility, moral ecology, culpability, oppression, blame, moral agency

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .