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Original scientific paper

Rationality and the Reactive Attitudes

Angus Ross

Full text: english pdf 606 Kb

page 45-58

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In Strawson’s “Freedom and Resentment”, the idea of the reactive attitudes is used to provide a corrective for an over-intellectualised picture of moral responsibility and of the moral life generally. But Strawson also tells us that in reasoning with someone our attitude towards them must be reactive. Taking up that thought, I suggest that Strawson has provided us with a corrective for an over-intellectualised picture of rationality. Drawing on a Wittgensteinian conception of the relation between thought and its expression, I argue that participation in a form of engagement with others that is reactive in Strawson’s sense is a condition of rationality.


Strawson, Wittgenstein, expression, attitude to a person

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