green numbers give full details.     |    back to list of philosophers     |     expand these ideas

Ideas of Philippa Foot, by Text

[British, 1920 - 2010, At Somerville College, Oxford University.]

1957 Free Will as Involving Determinism
p.63 p.63 Determinism threatens free will if actions can be causally traced to external factors
p.66 p.66 Not all actions need motives, but it is irrational to perform troublesome actions with no motive
p.69 p.69 People can act out of vanity without being vain, or even vain about this kind of thing
1958 Moral Arguments
p.104 p.104 Whether someone is rude is judged by agreed criteria, so the facts dictate the value
p.105 p.105 We can't affirm a duty without saying why it matters if it is not performed
p.96 p.96 Moral judgements need more than the relevant facts, if the same facts lead to 'x is good' and 'x is bad'
p.99 p.99 To reject the fact-value distinction, no evidence can count in favour of rightness or wrongness
1959 Moral Beliefs
p.112 p.112 The meaning of 'good' and other evaluations must include the object to which they attach
1961 Goodness and Choice
p.134 p.134 Some words, such as 'knife', have a meaning which involves its function
p.138 p.138 Being a good father seems to depend on intentions, rather than actual abilities
1967 Abortion and the Doctrine of Double Effect
p.19 p.19 Abortion is puzzling because we do and don't want the unborn child to have rights
p.20 p.20 A 'double effect' is a foreseen but not desired side-effect, which may be forgivable
p.22 p.22 The doctrine of double effect can excuse an outcome because it wasn't directly intended
p.23 p.23 Double effect says foreseeing you will kill someone is not the same as intending it
p.25 p.25 Without double effect, bad men can make us do evil by threatening something worse
p.25 p.25 Double effect seems to rely on a distinction between what we do and what we allow
1972 Morality as system of hypothetical imps.
p.164 p.164 Morality no more consists of categorical imperatives than etiquette does
p.169 n18 p.169 Saying we 'ought to be moral' makes no sense, unless it relates to some other system
p.172 n15 p.172 Morality is inescapable, in descriptive words such as 'dishonest', 'unjust' and 'uncharitable'
1972 Morality and Art
p.18 p.18 We sometimes just use the word 'should' to impose a rule of conduct on someone
p.6 p.6 A moral system must deal with the dangers and benefits of life
p.7 p.7 Morality shows murder is wrong, but not what counts as a murder
p.7 p.7 In the case of something lacking independence, calling it a human being is a matter of choice
p.9 p.9 Saying something 'just is' right or wrong creates an illusion of fact and objectivity
1972 Reasons for Actions and Desires
p.156 Post p.156 I don't understand the idea of a reason for acting, but it is probably the agent's interests or desires
1975 Reply to Professor Frankena
p.177 p.177 Moral judgements are hypothetical, because they depend on interests and desires
1978 Virtues and Vices
p.112 Virtues are intended to correct design flaws in human beings [Driver]
II p.8 Virtues are corrective, to resist temptation or strengthen motivation
II p.12 Courage overcomes the fears which should be overcome, and doesn't overvalue personal safety
III p.15 Most people think virtues can be displayed in bad actions
III p.18 Temperance is not a virtue if it results from timidity or excessive puritanism
p.13 p.13 Actions can be in accordance with virtue, but without actually being virtuous
p.2 p.2 We take courage, temperance, wisdom and justice as moral, but Aristotle takes wisdom as intellectual
p.6 p.6 Wisdom is open to all, and not just to the clever or well trained
1979 Moral Relativism
p.23 p.23 When we say 'is red' we don't mean 'seems red to most people'
p.33 p.33 All people need affection, cooperation, community and help in trouble
p.35 p.35 Do we have a concept of value, other than wanting something, or making an effort to get it?
1983 Moral Realism and Moral Dilemma
p.57 p.57 Maybe virtues conflict with each other, if some virtue needs a vice for its achievement
1985 Killing and Letting Die
p.78 p.78 It is not true that killing and allowing to die (or acts and omissions) are morally indistinguishable
p.82 p.82 The right of non-interference (with a 'negative duty'), and the right to goods/services ('positive')
p.85 p.85 Making a runaway tram kill one person instead of five is diverting a fatal sequence, not initiating one
1985 Morality, Action, and Outcome
p.101 p.101 Some virtues imply rules, and others concern attachment
p.101 p.101 Virtues can have aims, but good states of affairs are not among them
p.104 p.104 A good moral system benefits its participants, and so demands reciprocity
p.88 p.88 We see a moral distinction between our aims and their foreseen consequences
p.88 p.88 We see a moral distinction between doing and allowing to happen
p.89 p.89 Acts and omissions only matter if they concern doing something versus allowing it
1985 Utilitarianism and the Virtues
p.61 p.61 Consequentialists can hurt the innocent in order to prevent further wickedness
p.62 p.62 For consequentialism, it is irrational to follow a rule which in this instance ends badly
p.68 p.68 Why might we think that a state of affairs can be morally good or bad?
p.73 p.73 Good outcomes are not external guides to morality, but a part of virtuous actions
p.74 p.74 We should speak the truth, but also preserve and pursue it
p.75 p.75 Morality is seen as tacit legislation by the community
p.76 p.76 The idea of a good state of affairs has no role in the thought of Aristotle, Rawls or Scanlon
1991 Nietzsche's Immoralism
p.152 p.152 The practice of justice may well need a recognition of human equality
p.154 p.154 Unlike aesthetic evaluation, moral evaluation needs a concept of responsibility
1994 Rationality and Virtue
p.163 p.163 Calling a knife or farmer or speech or root good does not involve attitudes or feelings
p.164 p.164 The essential thing is the 'needs' of plants and animals, and their operative parts
p.168 p.168 Observing justice is necessary to humans, like hunting to wolves or dancing to bees
p.174 p.174 Possessing the virtue of justice disposes a person to good practical rationality
1995 Moral Dilemmas Revisited
p.183 p.183 There is no restitution after a dilemma, if it only involved the agent, or just needed an explanation [PG]
p.188 p.188 I can't understand how someone can be necessarily wrong whatever he does
1995 Does Moral Subjectivism Rest on a Mistake?
p.192 p.192 The mistake is to think good grounds aren't enough for moral judgement, which also needs feelings
p.192 p.192 Non-cognitivists give the conditions of use of moral sentences as facts about the speaker
p.207 p.207 Moral arguments are grounded in human facts
2001 Natural Goodness
1 p.24 Moral evaluations are not separate from facts, but concern particular facts about functioning
2 p.35 Virtues are as necessary to humans as stings are to bees
3 p.42 Sterility is a human defect, but the choice to be childless is not
5 p.66 Someone is a good person because of their rational will, not their body or memory
5 p.72 Wisdom only implies the knowledge achievable in any normal lifetime
6 p.88 Deep happiness usually comes from the basic things in life
6 p.97 Happiness is enjoying the pursuit and attainment of right ends
7 p.102 We all know that just pretending to be someone's friend is not the good life
7 p.114 Refraining from murder is not made good by authenticity or self-fulfilment
2003 Interview with Philippa Foot
p.33 p.33 Concepts such as function, welfare, flourishing and interests only apply to living things
p.33 p.33 There is no fact-value gap in 'owls should see in the dark'
p.33 p.33 Humans need courage like a plant needs roots
p.33 p.33 Human defects are just like plant or animal defects
P.34 p.34 If you demonstrate the reason to act, there is no further question of 'why should I?'
p.34-5 p.33 It is an odd Humean view to think a reason to act must always involve caring
p.35 p.35 Practical reason is goodness in choosing actions
p.35 p.35 Full rationality must include morality
p.37 p.37 Principles are not ultimate, but arise from the necessities of human life