1st Edition

Morality in a Realistic Spirit Essays for Cora Diamond

Edited By Andrew Gleeson, Craig Taylor Copyright 2020
    268 Pages
    by Routledge

    266 Pages
    by Routledge

    This unique collection of essays has two main purposes. The first is to honour the pioneering work of Cora Diamond, one of the most important living moral philosophers and certainly the most important working in the tradition inspired by Ludwig Wittgenstein. The second is to develop and deepen a picture of moral philosophy by carrying out new work in what Diamond has called the realistic spirit.

    The contributors in this book advance a first-order moral attitude that pays close attention to actual moral life and experience. Their essays, inspired by Diamond’s work, take up pressing challenges in Anglo-American moral philosophy, including Diamond’s defence of the concept ‘human being’ in ethics, her defence of literature as a source of moral thought that does not require external sanction from philosophy, her challenge to the standard ‘fact/value’ dichotomy, and her exploration of non-argumentative forms of legitimate moral persuasion. There are also essays that apply this framework to new issues such as the nature of love, the connections of ethics to theology, and the implications of Wittgenstein’s thought for political philosophy.

    Finally, the book features a new paper by Diamond in which she contests deep-rooted philosophical assumptions about language that severely limit what philosophers see as the possibilities in ethics. Morality in a Realistic Spirit offers a tribute to a great moral philosopher in the best way possible—by taking up the living ideas in her work and taking them in original and interesting directions.


    Andrew Gleeson and Craig Taylor

    1. Ethics and Experience

    2. Cora Diamond

    3. Cora Diamond and the Uselessness of Argument: Distances in Metaphysics and Ethics

    4. Reshef Agam-Segal

    5. The Importance of Being Fully Human: Transformation, Contemplation and Ethics

    6. Sarah Bachelard

    7. How to be somebody else: imaginative identification in ethics and literature

    8. Sophie Chappell

    9. Different themes of love

    10. Christopher Cordner

    11. A Brilliant Perspective: Diamondian Ethics

    12. Alice Crary

    13. The Riddling God

    14. Andrew Gleeson

    15. Shakespeare, Value and Diamond

    16. Simon Haines

    17. The asymmetry of truth and the logical role of thinking guides in ethics

    18. Oskari Kuusela

    19. Difficulties of Reality, Skepticism and Moral Community: Remarks After Diamond on Cavell

    20. David Macarthur

    21. Comparison or Seeing-As? The Holocaust and Factory Farming

    22. Talia Morag

    23. Two conceptions of "community": as defined by what it is not, or as defined by what it is

    24. Rupert Read

    25. Thinking with Animals

    26. Duncan Richter

    27. Diamond on Realism in Moral Philosophy

    Craig Taylor


    Craig Taylor is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Flinders University. He is the author of Moralism: A Study of a Vice (2012) and Sympathy: A Philosophical Analysis (2002); a co-editor of Hume and The Enlightenment (2011) and A Sense for Humanity: the Ethical Thought of Raimond Gaita (2014).

    Andrew Gleeson has taught philosophy at the Australian Catholic University, the University of Adelaide, and the Flinders University of South Australia. He works mainly in ethics and philosophy of religion. His book A Frightening Love: Recasting the Problem of Evil was published in 2012.

    "This is a rich collection, containing a great deal of beautiful philosophy . . . The (comparative) unity of themes serves to bring into relief the difference of style and intellectual temperment of the different contributors . . . The beauty comes from the deep reflectiveness of many of the essays, as well as their use of powerful examples." Lars Hertzberg in Philosophical Investigations