Meaning, morality, and the need for a Rearticulation of the self

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Authors
Gold, Greyson
Advisor
Glowienka, Edward
Editor
Date of Issue
2023-04-28
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Citation
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Title
Meaning, morality, and the need for a Rearticulation of the self
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Presentation
Description
Abstract
My research examines contemporary philosophy surrounding the moral values and meaning which make up the self. I seek to articulate what Charles Taylor labels the best account of the moral self––the system which provides the most fitting and consistent framework by which to explain the complexity of the human. I look at the works of atheist thinkers Friedrich Nietzsche, one of the founders of Postmodernism, and Jean-Paul Sartre, one of the primary existentialist thinkers, to examine some of the contemporary notions of the moral self. I argue that these thinkers fail to provide a best account of the moral self. Alternately, bringing in the thought of Iris Murdoch, Charles Taylor, and Susan Wolf, I argue that the moral self is not limitable to a Nietzschean becoming or an existential willing, but must be explained in relation to a higher telos, an object of love, an aim for moral growth, by which one can judge the goodness of one’s actions and the meaningfulness of one’s life. I also discuss the role of narrative art in articulating aspects of the moral self, arguing that effective narrative art supports my teleological framework.
Sponsors
Degree Awarded
Semester
Spring
Department
Philosophy