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Peters on moral education Bruneau, Sandra Rochelle 1979

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PETERS ON MORAL EDUCATION by SANDRA ROCHELLE BRUNEAU B.A., University of Saskatchewan, 1964 B.Ed., University of Saskatchewan, 1968 M.A., University of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1972 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF EDUCATION in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Faculty of Education) We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA July, 1979 ©Sandra Rochelle Bruneau, 1979 In presenting th i s thesis in pa r t i a l fu l f i lment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the Univers ity of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree that the Library shal l make i t f ree ly avai lable for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of th i s thesis for scholar ly purposes may be granted by the Head of my Department or by his representatives. It i s understood that copying or publ icat ion of th i s thesis for f inanc ia l gain shal l not be allowed without my written permission. Department of The Univers ity of B r i t i s h Columbia 2075 Wesbrook Place Vancouver, Canada V6T 1W5 D E - 6 B P 75-5 1 1 E ABSTRACT " Many teaching materials and analyses of morality and moral.educa-tion are available to teachers and moral education researchers. Some of these materials and research strategies are based on analyses of moral judgment and behaviour. It i s noteworthy that these teaching materials and discussions of morality and moral education do not acknowledge Richard Peters' recommendations for moral education. His discussions of morality and-moral education have not yet resulted i n curriculum materials; nor do individual research projects base their work on his point of view. Given Peters' esteemed place among philosophers of education, and given the comprehensiveness of his writing on moral education, this lack of attention i s somewhat surprising. Are his views sound? Can they be interpreted "fbr specific teaching practices and research-strategies? In this thesis, I have examined Peters' proposals for moral edu-cation. My aims were twofold: (1) to make clear his views on morality and moral education and to c r i t i c a l l y assess those views for their i n t e l l i g i b i l i t y and consistency, and (2) to indicate the sorts of educational practices and proposals for research which are at least consistent with his ideas. To do these tasks, I give an account of Peters' c r i t e r i a of 'education' and survey his views on 'morality' and 'moral education.' I give particular attention to his "facets of the moral l i f e " : 1 worth-while acti v i t i e s , . social rules, roles and duties, principles as i i motives, character-traits and virtues. In addition I make clear and assess the importance of other concepts which interest Peters: 'form,' 'content,' 'habit,' 'emotion.' Occasionally I compare Peters' concep-tion of morality and moral education with the conceptions of other moral philosophers and educators; these comparisons assist in both explicating and c r i t i c i z i n g Peters' work. Finally I further condense Peters' views i n order to suggest leads to moral educators and researchers. I do this, f i r s t , by noting what constructive proposals come from Peters' account; second, by detailing those areas of his account which require more conceptual and empirical work; and third, by outlining specific projects for curriculum builders, teachers and researchers. JERROLD R. COOMBS, Research Supervisor i i i TABLE OF CONTENTS ABSTRACT PRIMARY SOURCES—WORKS BY R. S. PETERS . ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Chapter 1 INTRODUCTION I. Moral Education and Moral Reasoning . II. An Overview of the Thesis 2 PETERS ON EDUCATION, MORALITY AND MORAL EDUCATION . . . I. Peters on 'Education' ' . . . . A. C r i t e r i a of 'Education' . B. Indoctrination . C. Conditioning D. Processes of Education 1. Training 2. Instruction 3. Teaching and Learning Principles E. Peters on Worthwhile A c t i v i t i e s . . . . . . . 1. The Argument Against Peters 2. Worthwhile A c t i v i t i e s 3. Interpretations of Peters' Claim (a) The 'methods of education' interpretation (b) The 'empirical' interpretation (c) . The 'human ideal' interpretation (d) The 'ethical excellences' interpretation (e) The knowledge and s k i l l s components of 'avoiding harm' II. Peters on Morality and Moral Education Codes, Subjectivism and Rational Morality . . Principles and Rules . . Facets of the Moral L i f e . . . . Reason and 'Feeling' . . . . . . . . . . . . . Moral Development and Moral Learning A. B. C. D. E. i v THE FORM AND CONTENT OF MORAL EDUCATION I. Teaching and Learning Principles and Rules • • A. Principles i n Peters' Account of Morality . 1. 'Having Principles': Arguing, and Acting on Principle 2. Principle Formulation 3. Peters' Principles (a) His notion of 'principle' (b) His method of jus t i f y i n g principles (c) The five principles (i) Equality, Impartiality, Justice ( i i ) Consideration of Interests ( i i i ) Respect for Persons (iv) Truth-telling (v) Freedom 4. Conflicts of Principle B. Rules i n Peters' Account of Morality • • . 1. Basic Social Rules 2. Local or Relative Rules 3. Conflicts of Rule C. Teaching and Learning Principles and Rules 1. Teaching and Learning Rules (a) Introduction (b) Teaching and learning moral rules 2. Teaching and Learning Principles -•" (a) The logi c a l prerequisite of learning form (b) The "teaching" of form (c) Learning form: developing se n s i t i v i t i e s (i) caring and reasoning ( i i ) the development of the imagination II. Form and Content A. The Form of Morality 1. Peters' Use of "Formal" (a) Formal, rational principles (b) 'Moral' and 'Substantive' principles 2. 'Form': Holding Beliefs Evidentially 3. Peters'.Objections to Kohlberg's Notion of 'Form' 4. 'Form' as the Development of Autonomy 5. Comments on Peters' notion of 'Form' B. The Content of Morality . I l l 1. Why Content i s Stressed 2. Conceptions of Content •(a) The formal/substantive distinction (b) Moral rules and their concepts (c) Persons and harm 3. Peters' Discussions of Content (a) The formal/substantive distinction (b) Moral rules and their concepts (c) Persons and harm 4. Peters' Other Senses of 'Content' (a) Roles and duties (b) Worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s (2) Character-traits and motives HABITS, MOTIVES AND EMOTIONS 119 I. Habits ; :.J 119 •A. The Problems 119 B. Peters' Analysis of 'Habit'' 123 1. Habits as Actions 2. Habituation 3. Habits and Morality 4. Peters on 'Habit' and Habits (a) Children and moral habits (b) Are these habits necessary to morality? C. The Paradox of Moral Education . . . . . . . . 137 II. Motives 141 A. Peters' Analysis of 'Motive' 142 1. Motives, Justifications and Explanations 2. Motives as a Special Class of Reasons 3. Motives and Reason Why Explanations 4. Motives as Causes B. Peters' Account of Moral Motivation 155 1. Moral Motives 2. Appraisals 3. Educating the Motives 4. Moral Motives and Moral Motivation III. Emotions • 163 A. Emotion-appraisals • 164 B. Comments on Peters' Analysis of 'Emotion' . . . 167 C. Peters, Emotions and Morality . 170 v i CHARACTER AND VIRTUES . . . . . . . 179 I. "Virtue" and Virtues ..'"."•179 II. Character-Traits . 184 A. The Social Rule Variety of Character-Traits 184 B. Self-Control Character Traits 185 1. Self-Control and the Will 2. Interpretations of Peters' Claim (a) as a conceptual claim (b) as an empirical claim 3. Counter-Inclinations (a) outside influences (b) inhibiting physical and emotion-reactions C. Deciding and Acting . . . . 201 III. Peters on the Development of Character 207 A. Senses of 'Character' 207 B. 'Having Character' 208 C. Moral Education and Character Development . . 210 MORAL EDUCATION AND RESEARCH 215 I. The Contribution of R. S. Peters to Moral Education 216 A. The Development of "Settled Dispositions" . . 216 B. The Development of Motives (Principles) . . . 219 C. The Role of the Emotions 225 D. Conflicting Claims, Rules and Principles . . 226 E. Self-Control 227 II. Remaining Conceptual and Empirical Issues i n Peters 231 A. Conceptual Issues and Peters' Account of Morality 231 1. The Scope of Moral Education 2. Moral Rules and Moral Motives 3. The Concept of a 'Person' 4. Moral Component Schemes B. Empirical Issues and Peters' Account . . . . . .235 1. The Question of Non-Rational Means 2. The Question of Reasoning A b i l i t i e s III. Curriculum-Development and Research . 238 v i i BIBLIOGRAPHY • ^ t J -I. Works by R. S. Peters 241 II. Secondary Sources 244 APPENDICES s I. Richard S. Peters; Some Biographical Notes 249 A. The Career of R. S. Peters 249 ; B. The Publishing Record of Peters .250 II. Kohlberg's Stages of Moral Development 252 III. Moral Components 253 A. Wilson's Components v v . . • . • • • . . . . . 253 B. Hirst's Components 254 C. AVER Components 254 v i i i Primary Sources—Works by R. S. Peters CODE ARTICLES AND BOOKS* AP "The Autonomy of Prudence" B "Behaviourism" CP "Concrete Principles and the Rational Passions" CM The Concept of Motivation DB "In Defence of Bingo: A Rejoinder" DD "Destiny and Determinism" DR "The Development of Reason" EE Ethics and Education EEm "The Education of the Emotions" EI "Education as I n i t i a t i o n " EP "What i s an Educational Process?" EPss "Emotions, Passivity and the Place of Freud's Theory in Psychology" FC 1" — -"form and Content in Moral Education" •- , :~ " Fr "Freedom and the Development of the Free Man" FT "Freud's Theory of Moral Development i n Relation to that of Piaget" JE "The Justification of Education" LE The Logic of Education MD "Moral Development: A Plea for Pluralism" ME "Motivation, Emotion and the Conceptual Schemes of Common Sense" ML "Moral Development and Moral Learning" *For the f u l l citations, see the Bibliography. Example: (FC142) refers to p. 142 of Peters' "Form and Content i n Moral Education," in R. S. Peters (ed.). Authority, Responsibility and Education. ix CODE ARTICLES AND BOOKS (continued) MM "Motives and Motivation" MrM "More on Motives" OP "Michael Oakeshott's Philosophy of Education" PC "Moral Education and the Psychology of Character" PK "The Place of Kohlberg's Theory i n Moral Education" PU "Personal Understanding and Personal Relationships" RC Reason and Compassion RH "Reason and Habit: the Paradox of Moral Education" RK "Reply to Kohlberg" RP "Reason and Passion" ' SP Social Principles and the Democratic State SS "Subjectivity and Standards" TC "Training Intellect and Character" X ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I am grateful to the members of my thesis committee for the assistance they have given me. My appreciation goes to Dr. Jerrold R. Coombs who supervised my work, and to Dr. Leroi B. Daniels for his helpful comments and support. It was through the work of these men that I f i r s t became interested in the f i e l d of moral education. i - j T i ^ : 3 i - i : a m - •also1 very -appreciative^<jf -the1 suggestions^ for-improvement*..-= and constant encouragement given me by Dr. Donald G. Brown of the Department of Philosophy. To my husband B i l l and to my children, Rochelle and Jon, my sincere thanks for your encouragement. Your abiding interest i n my subject and your great senses of humour have sustained me during these long days of writing and revision. Sandra Bruneau University of Br i t i s h Columbia May 1979 x i CHAPTER 1 Introduction I. Moral Education and Moral Reasoning This thesis i s about moral education. In i t , I examine the con-tribution of one man, Richard Peters, whose writing on the subject i s extensive and in f l u e n t i a l . My purpose i s to assess whether Peters' account of morality and moral education i s sound and whether his views can provide a good basis for moral education programs and research. In the last ten years, the f i e l d of study called "moral education" has attracted the attention of teachers, school counsellors, teacher educators and psychologists. Many hundreds of persons i n North American and British universities now refer to the subject-matter of moral educa- 1 tion as their primary research interest. In many secondary and post-secondary institutions, groups of academics from many disciplines are working together on various aspects of this subject. From individual and cooperative efforts have come thousands of pages of research propos-als and reports, a r t i c l e s , school curriculum guides and graduate theses. There are now available to teachers in elementary and secondary schools many different "approaches to moral education": different suggestions about both the content and method of moral education. Compared with other curriculum subject-areas, however, the preparation of moral educa-tion materials i s at an early stage of development. In Canada, curriculum-planners in provincial departments of educa-tion have expressed increasing interest i n the subject of moral education 1 (Cochrane and Williams, 1978). This interest i s frequently expressed i n the stated goals and objectives of various social studies curricula. In addition to "departmental" expressions of interest i n moral education, individual school d i s t r i c t s , school principals and classroom teachers have indicated their desire to understand the subject-area and their willingness to "try out" moral education materials. To my mind, the attention given to the subject of moral education by teachers and education department personnel places a considerable burden upon persons working in this f i e l d . Not only must these experts come up with workable programs for the schools and programs to assist teachers, they must also ensure that their contributions are based on sound views of "moral education." Teachers, principals and others who use school moral education programs should also have a good understand-ing of 'morality'. Only i f they have this understanding w i l l they be able to sort out programs and suggestions which are based on sound views of morality and moral education from those which are not. The question of what i s and what i s not a "sound" view of moral education, of course, i s an extremely complicated one to answer. The book publishing and distribution industry has seen advantages in print-ing saleable items for use by teachers. But many of these materials do not reflect sound views of moral education. The emphasis on Values Cla r i f i c a t i o n , for example, widely received by teachers, purports to be an approach to moral education. The C l a r i f i c a t i o n books (e.g., Raths, Harmin and Simon, 1966) set out materials and exercises to help the student overcome his reticence in order to state what he likes and dislikes, but they do l i t t l e to introduce the student to the notion of morality, much less help him to decide how to resolve moral conflict situations. The values c l a r i f i c a t i o n approach, in fact, reflects one popularly-held view about what morality i s . Many people consider that "morality" i s a personal matter and that to make a moral judgment about an issue i s simply to state one's likes or dislikes concerning the issue. Certainly morality i s a personal matter to the extent that a person must come to understand issues and decide for himself what i s right or wrong, permis-sible or impermissible. But the view that moral judgments simply reflect what people l i k e or dis l i k e about a matter refl e c t s a faulty notion of what i t is to make sound moral judgments. Some persons view "morality" as a subject-area having only to do with sex, r e l i g i o n , personal habits and business practices. And while some, perhaps many, moral issues arise from decisions people have to make about sex, religion and business practices as well as their choice of personal goals and habits, to say that morality should be or i s concerned only with these subjects i s to unduly r e s t r i c t the scope of morality. Moral issues arise, too, when people develop stereotypes of others and when they act from certain prejudices. Moral issues are debated when governments consider whether or not to legalize abortion, to force segments of the population to work in labour camps, to require persons to fight i n wars, to spend or not to spend public monies in aid of the elderly, the unemployed, the physically handicapped and the mentally i l l . Deciding what is and what is not a moral issue, of course, can occupy and has occupied moral philosophers for some time. In addition, A deciding how to resolve moral conflict situations has been a chief con-cern of moral philosophers during this century. Much of their work has centered on getting clear what i t i s to reason i n morals, and what i t i s to provide good reasons for the moral, positions one can take. In this work, the question of justification—what i t means to make a j u s t i f i e d moral judgment—has been a key one. Most of the philosophers who concentrate on the notion of reasoning in morals have made the assumption that morality i s a rational enterprise. That i s , they accept the view that to make a "sound" moral judgment i s to base that judgment on good reasons. The notion of "evidence" for a moral belief makes some sense. Some argue that because people commonly offer what they think are good reasons for a practice, and because people evaluate others' reasons for a particular judgment as either good or bad, they, too, must accept that morality—making moral judgments—is based on reason and that this reasoning can be done well or done poorly. Working from the assumption that morality i s a "rational" business, moral p h i l -osophers and moral educators have worked hard to make clear what i t i s to engage in moral reasoning and what i t i s to be disposed to act for moral reasons. Some of the moral education materials produced for the schools reflect this emphasis on good reasoning in morals. I I . An Overview of the Thesis Richard Peters i s among those ethical theorists who believe that to be in i t i a t e d into morality and moral thinking i s to be in i t i a t e d into a "rational" enterprise. Educating persons into "rational morality," he believes, involves helping'them to reason well on moral matters, and this includes helping them to develop their dispositions to act on those reasons. He does not believe that teaching persons to reason well on moral matters means introducing them to the "cold logic" of reasoning. In his view, the notions 'feeling,' 'affect,' ' s e n s i t i v i t i e s ' and 'compassion' are conceptually connected with moral reasons. And, as we w i l l see, the notions 'habits,' 'virtues, 1 'motives,' and 'character' figure s i g n i f i -cantly in his view of what i t i s to l i v e the "moral l i f e . " Peters writes on a wide range of topics i n moral education; this much i s already clear. He not only includes some analysis of the logic of moral reasoning, but speaks with great concern of the moral develop-ment of young people. His comments on what he believes are the best home and school conditions for the moral education of youngsters are worth reading. So also are his comments on those conditions he believes do not favour the development of persons' "autonomy" in morals. Given the extent of Peters' writing on moral education, i t i s rather puzzling that so l i t t l e attention has been given to his view of morality and moral education by those currently engaged in curriculum work and research in moral education. There are many possible reasonSj of course, for this inattention. The preparation of moral education materials for use by school personnel i s , as I have said, at a very early stage of development.. As well, Peters' writings are written at a level of abstraction which makes i t d i f f i c u l t for educators to trans-late his views into school programs and research hypotheses. A major task of this thesis was to make clear and evaluate Peters' 6 views on morality and moral education, f i r s t , by systematically presenting his views, which are dispersed throughout many papers and books; second, by assessing the arguments he gives on several key concepts; and third, by considering which of his theses are well-supported and lend them-selves to the "practice" of moral education. Some of Peters' writing on morality and moral education has not been systematically presented nor c r i t i c a l l y analyzed in this thesis. A l l of his major themes, however, are examined in this work. Without doubt, a more thorough source search on these themes would make my organization and analysis of Peters' views even more complete than i t i s . Chapter 2 presents an overview of Peters' notion of education, and a summary of his views on morality and moral education. I examine his analyses of 'indoctrination' and 'conditioning', for he thinks that these procedures in their "purest" forms are antithetical to education. Training and instructing, however, are important processes of education. And conditioning aids are important supplements to educational processes. Peters uses the phrase "moral education" to refer both to educa-tion, broadly conceived, and to a somewhat "narrower" enterprise of educating persons into rules and principles "of an interpersonal sort." In a section on "worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s , " I present and assess five possible interpretations of Peters' claim ' i n i t i a t i n g persons into worth-while a c t i v i t i e s i s a "moral" matter.' Following this, I summarize his views on morality and moral educa-tion so as to suggest a rationale for the chapters that follow. In this summary, I mention those moral philosophers who Peters claims have most influenced his thought. Chapter 3 presents a systematic account of Peters' writing on the teaching and learning of moral rules and principles, and as well, con-siders his distinction between the form and content of moral education. His writing on each of the five moral principles gives evidence of his uncertainty as to what these principles mean. He says that his prin-ciples are the preconditions of rational thought, but I point out that some of his principles are moral or substantive principles. One prob-lem with his treatment of moral principles i s his lack of attention to the problem of resolving conflicts of principle. Some d i f f i c u l t i e s arise,, too, with his treatment of conflicts of rule. He says that conflicts of rule are resolved by recourse to principles but he omits to say which principles would resolve which rule-conflicts and why. As well, he pays v i r t u a l l y no attention to his category of " l o c a l rules." Peters relies on the notions 'habituation' and 'habit-training' to explicate the teaching and learning of moral rules. He recommends the use of 'conditioning aids' because he believes children must conform their behaviour to rules. 'Induction' or teaching i s also important in getting a child to obey moral rules; he gives reasons why this must be so. Learning principles, he says, i s different from learning rules. A principle cannot really be taught; i t may just be "caught." The educa-tor's role i s to stimulate the child's imagination in an effort to increase the child's sensitivities to others' suffering. These sensi-t i v i t i e s may later become the child's principles. One of the best atmospheres for increasing children's s e n s i t i v i t i e s , Peters says, i s to provide the children with reasons for acting. In the section on the form and content of moral education, I exam-ine his notion of 'form' by looking at four discussions: his use of the term "formal," his objections to Kohlberg's notion of 'form,' his notion of 'form' as the evidential holding of beliefs, and his discussion of those conditions he thinks are necessary for a child's attainment of 'form' or autonomy in morals. I conclude that Peters treats the notion of 'form' in such a way that we cannot be clear about his exact meaning. On the notion of 'content,' I point to three areas where i t makes sense to talk about the content of morality, then outline Peters' contri-butions to these three. He uses the term 'content' in another sense as well: to refer to aspects of one's l i f e which can be affected by "moral thinking": roles and duties, and worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s . As well, he says that the development of character-traits and motives are part of the content of morality. In Chapter 4, I examine with some care three key concepts in the outline of Peters' views presented i n the previous two chapters: 'habits,' 'motives,' and 'emotions.' Peters believes that children must be habituated to rules before they can reason about these rules; he thinks that conditioning, tr a i n -ing and practice are important in getting children to conform. What is rather puzzling is his additional suggestion that children can learn to follow reason from an early age: giving reasons to youngsters is the best way of inculcating "adaptable habits." His analysis of 'habit' attempts to show how this notion is compatible with reason-giving, but, as I suggest, he does not make clear how his analysis of 'habit' d i f f e r s from 'acting out of habit,' a notion he thinks i s incompatible with "act-ing for reasons." In his treatment of the paradox of moral education, Peters does not attempt to answer the question of what non-rational means impede the development of a child's sense of the form of morality, but he does con-tinue to suggest that i n the moral education of children, non-rational means are necessary supplements to the "use of rational (reason-giving) means." Peters believes that moral principles and rules must become "personalized": they must become a person's own motives. In the sec-tion on Motives, I look f i r s t ' at Peters' writing on the concept 'motives' and make some comparisons with other writers. Second, I look at some comments he makes on moral motivation, but these comments suggest l i t t l e in the way of analyses. The notion of an 'appraisal' i s an important one i n Peters' analyses of both 'motives' and 'emotions.' I examine his notion of an 'appraisal,' then look at emotion-appraisals and the role he sees for them in the moral l i f e . I suggest that because Peters offers l i t t l e in the way of a comprehensive moral theory, his talk of the relevance of emotion-appraisals to moral judgment and action i s not as complete as i t could be. In Chapter 5—the last to contain the substantive moral views of P e t e r s — I examine his notion of 'character' and the virtues he ca l l s the "self-control virtues." This group of virtues i s of many kinds. I attempt some interpretation of Peters' claim that a moral agent should have these virtues i n order to do what i s just. 10 From different senses of ' c h a r a c t e r P e t e r s selects the notion of 'having character' and says that the development of persons who have character should be at least one goal of moral education. But 'having character'—consistently carrying out one's own policies and p l a n s — i s compatible with "being bad." Peters' writing on 'a person's choice of principles' gets him into a l i t t l e d i f f i c u l t y , and his writing on moral education as character development presents a somewhat confusing picture. In the f i n a l chapter, I condense Peters' views even further i n order to suggest leads to moral educators and researchers. I point out those areas of Peters' thought which require more conceptual and empir-i c a l work. After making some general suggestions to moral educators, I outline what specific tasks might be undertaken for curriculum-development and research work. Since there are only a few teachers who can competently deal with moral issues in the classroom, I suggest that one immediate goal of moral education should be the preparation of teachers. * * * * * * In summary, Richard Peters' analysis of morality and moral educa-tion offers many suggestions to moral educators. If these suggestions were seriously acted on, we would soon have many more morally educated persons. Many of these persons could become competent moral educators in their school classrooms. In spite of the fact that his writing does provide moral educators with many interesting leads, I offer here a few c r i t i c a l comments on Peters' writing. One thing we can say about his writing i s that he f a i l s to analyze in any depth those concepts he sees are important to " l i v i n g the moral l i f e . " Given the amount that he has written, i t i s puzzling that he has not gone on to explore in more de t a i l the problem-areas which recur. He appears to have revised his views very l i t t l e over the years. In writing this thesis, i t was relatively easy for me to group references together (e.g., CP295; PU400; MD314) without giving much thought to the chronology of those published works. Second, Peters' heart is s t i l l with psychology and psychological explanation, and while we are clearly beneficiaries of his impressive grasp of the literature in this 'field, we do not get a sense that Peters has the same grasp of the literature i n moral philosophy. One person can probably not "do i t a l l . " Nevertheless, i t should be said that Peters has not made use of important works in ethics written in the last twenty years to c l a r i f y or extends his own understanding of morality.. The problems in his account which surround the resolution of conflicts of rule and conflicts of principle might have been c l a r i f i e d i f he had paid attention to current debates i n moral philosophy. CHAPTER 2 Peters on Education, Morality and Moral Education Anyone undertaking the task of moral education must understand the concepts 'morality' and 'education.' Peters provides f r u i t f u l insights into both concepts. In fact, Peters' writing reflects two of his major concerns: to make clear what he believes are the l o g i c a l l y necessary conditions of the concept 'education,' and to lay out his understanding of 'being morally educated.' Peters' treatment of these two matters suggests philosophically defensible ways of coping with the problems moral educators meet. Advocates of moral education occasionally hear complaints that moral education i s dangerous or impossible and are often puzzled how to proceed with their task. If moral educators are to answer these charges and get on with their work, they must grasp the contours of the notion of moral-it y and employ log i c a l l y and practically relevant means to bring about this comprehension in others. Specialists i n other subjects confront d i f f i c u l t i e s of this kind when they i n i t i a t e students into their f i e l d s of inquiry. But moral education differs from other subject areas i n that proponents of moral education usually i n s i s t on open discussions of 'education' and 'moral education.' Some people may think of 'moral education,' for example, as condi-tioning or indoctrination. They do so because of their beliefs about 'morality' and about the l i k e l y means of bringing about "desirable" behaviours. Others consider the concepts 'conditioning' and 12 13 ' i n d o c t r i n a t i o n ' to be a n t i t h e t i c a l to ' e d u c a t i o n . ' To compl icate mat ters , s t i l l others cons ider these var ious not ions to be in terchangeable . Peters does not f i t r e a d i l y i n t o e i t h e r of these c a t e g o r i e s . Peters maintains that n e i t h e r the concept of ' c o n d i t i o n i n g ' nor the concept of ' i n d o c t r i n a t i o n 1 i s synonymous wi th ' e d u c a t i o n ' ; a l l three concepts , however, share some fami ly resemblances. To be c l e a r on ' educat ion ' and i t s fami ly members, he mainta ins , i s to go a cons iderable d i s tance i n understanding what i t i s to i n i t i a t e others p r o p e r l y i n t o moral t h i n k i n g and behaviour . I t makes good sense, there -f o r e , to o u t l i n e P e t e r s ' c r i t e r i a f o r ' e d u c a t i o n ' before cons ider ing h i s theses on moral educat ion . T h i s chapter i s , e s s e n t i a l l y , a summary o f P e t e r s ' remarks on ' e d u c a t i o n , ' ' m o r a l i t y ' and 'moral e d u c a t i o n . ' Except for some c r i t i c a l remarks I make on h i s no t ion of ' i n d o c t r i n a t i o n , ' ' c o n d i t i o n i n g ' and ' t r a i n i n g , ' I reserve commentary of an a n a l y t i c a l nature to Chapters 3, 4 and 5. There my concern w i l l be to examine, i n some d e t a i l , Pe ter s ' views on m o r a l i t y and to a l e s s e r extent h i s views on education s i m p l i c i t e r . P a r t 1 of the present chapter begins a review of Peters ' ' c r i t e r i a of e d u c a t i o n , ' i n c l u d i n g h i s d i s t i n c t i o n between the 'matter' and the 'manner' of educat ion and h i s use of ' t a sk ' and 'achievement' i n a n a l -y z i n g the concept ' e d u c a t i o n . ' I cons ider next the s i m i l a r i t i e s and d i s s i m i l a r i t i e s he sees between ' educat ion ' and r e l a t e d concepts: ' i n d o c t r i n a t i o n , ' ' c o n d i t i o n i n g , ' ' t r a i n i n g , ' ' i n s t r u c t i n g , ' and ' t e a c h i n g . ' Before l e a v i n g the d i s c u s s i o n of educat ion , I remark on Peters ' concern with the i n i t i a t i o n of persons into "worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s . " Unlike many moral educators, he regards such i n i t i a t i o n to be a 'moral matter.' Clearly this difference of opinion affects the tasks moral educators might include under the rubric 'moral education.' If moral educators do not view this " i n i t i a t i o n " as part of the task of moral education, however, they may s t i l l see the importance of the issues raised by Peters for the study of moral education. I w i l l point out the importance I believe Peters' concern has for a more restricted sense of moral education. The summary of Peters' views on rational morality and rational moral education i n Part II of this chapter selects important features of his view of the 'moral l i f e . ' Here I point to key themes in his writing which receive detailed examination in later chapters. I. Peters on 'Education' A. C r i t e r i a of 'Education' Common to Peters' many discussions on the concept 'education'* i s his reference to Gilbert Ryle's distinction between 'task' and 'achieve-ment' verbs (Ryle, 1959). According to Ryle, achievement verbs l i k e 'finding,' 'concluding,' 'hearing,' and 'winning' are indicative of the "successful outcome of tasks"; 'task' verbs, l i k e 'hunting,' on the other" hand, pick out a c t i v i t i e s or processes (EE26ff). 'Education,' says Peters, i s a special kind of achievement verb. Like the examples given by Ryle, 'education' indicates the successful outcome of tasks. But unlike these examples, 'education' implies the *(EE; EP; LE; JE) . . . . . 15 worthwhileness (desirability) of these outcomes; 'education' i s thus a normative concept. And unlike these other examples, 'education' covers a range of tasks as well as achievements (EP6ff). In his analysis of 'education' as an achievement verb, Peters refers frequently to 'ends' and 'desirable qualities.' He mentions concepts related to 'education'—ones l i k e 'cure' and 'reform'-—which can be analyzed similarly i n terms of 'ends' and 'desirable qualities.' To distinguish these terms from each other, therefore, Peters sets out to examine the ends ("nature of the ends") peculiar to each. What emerges, however, is not so much a comparison of these ends as an account of some ends peculiar to education. In public discussion we rarely reach agreement on the "desirable qualities," "aims" or "ends" of education. For the sake of comparison, notice that i t i s relatively easy to obtain agreement on what consti-tutes a cure. The ends associated with 'curing' and 'reform,' Peters says, are "determinate"; the ends of education "indeterminate." Curing someone "suggests that (the person) has lapsed from a standard which the cure is restoring"; reforming "suggests making persons morally better" or making persons more responsible. Educating consists in "putting people i n the way of values of which they have never dreamt" (LE19). In spite of the indeterminacy of the ends of education, there are, Peters suggests, some limitations on what can count as an end or value in education: 'Education' suggests not only that what develops i n someone i s valuable but. also that i t involves the development of knowledge and understanding. An educated person . . . i s one who has , 16 some understanding . . . not just know-how or knack. This under-standing . . . should not be too narrowly specialized. (LE19) In this part of his analysis, Peters in s i s t s on two l o g i c a l l y necessary conditions of 'education': the de s i r a b i l i t y condition and the knowledge condition, which latt e r includes "both depth and breadth of understanding." Peters acknowledges common objections to both conditions, but con-cludes that they reveal either mis-uses or archaic uses of the terms 'knowledge,' or 'education.' In support of this conclusion, Peters conducts a brief etymological.examination of the concept 'education.' In pre-nineteenth century times, education meant 'training' and 'having s k i l l s . ' More recently, however, 'education' became associated with a person's moral, i n t e l l e c t u a l and s p i r i t u a l development. The phrase "an educated man" portrays the depth and breadth of a person's under-standing, rather than the person's commitment to "any narrowly conceived enterprise." S t i l l , Peters knows there are.many ("perhaps a majority") who use the word 'education' to refer to processes and desirable qualities which have not to do with-knowledge and understanding. Accordingly, he relaxes his conditions by suggesting other concepts or "conceptions" of education which emphasize the notions 'desirability,' or 'knowledge,' or both: 1. a concept of education which refers to any process of bring-ing up or rearing, where the connection with what i s desir-able or with what i s knowledge is purely contingent. 2. a concept of education i n which there i s the development of ' .• - 17 desirable states without emphasis on knowledge. 3. a concept of education i n which there i s emphasis on the development of knowledge without implying des i r a b i l i t y . 4. a "specific" concept of education which links such processes with the development of states of a person, involving knowledge and understanding i n depth and breadth, and also suggests that they are desirable. (LE25) Peters clearly prefers the fourth " s p e c i f i c " concept of 'education' his recommendations for educational practices are based upon i t . To the conditions he has.put forward—the de s i r a b i l i t y and knowledg conditions—Peters adds a third. Education, he says, refers not only to the development of worthwhile or desirable forms of knowledge and under-standing in persons (the "matter" of education). Development of this kind should not violate the "wittingness and voluntariness" of the person being educated. Peters believes this condition (the "manner" of educa-tion) rules out as 'educative,' those circumstances or a c t i v i t i e s in which forms of knowledge and understanding thought to be desirable are imposed upon a person without his (at least t a c i t ) consent or probable comprehension: ones which do not "respect the learner as a person." He labels as "morally objectionable" those a c t i v i t i e s ruled out. Peters turns to the notion of education i n i t s 'task' or 'manner' sense. He examines the "family of processes" leading to depth and breadth of understanding, which respect persons being educated. He b r i e f l y touches upon those processes which can, on logical grounds, be 'educational,' and even more b r i e f l y on those which cannot be. B. Indoctrination Recent literature on 'indoctrination' suggests the d i f f i c u l t y of determining which features distinguish the notion from 'education. 1 The aims or intentions of the indoctrinator, the method he employs,; and the content of what i s passed on, are popular candidates for the necessary condition or conditions of 'indoctrination' (Snook, 1972b). As well, the notion 'indoctrination' i s frequently analyzed in terms of the "state," as i t were, of the indoctrinated person. Snook c a l l s this the "upshot" sense of indoctrination (Snook, 1972a). Peters does not enter directly into this discussion, although he is familiar with papers by Wilson and Hare which set i n motion recent debate on the subject of indoctrination (Hollins, 1964; EE26ff). Peters' few comments on 'indoctrination,' scattered through several papers, indicate that he believes the aims of the indoctrinator, the method the indoctrinator employs and the content of what i s passed on are a l l to some extent central to the a c t i v i t y of indoctrinating. He does not use the terms 'method,' 'intention,' or 'content' in his statements on indoctrination; but rather the notions 'belief,' 'evidence,' 'valid-i t y , ' ' c r i t i c a l thought' and 'autonomy.' His use of these terms gives evidence of his concern with the "upshot" sense: the state of the indoctrinated person. Peters offers insights into the notion of 'indoctrination' using only the example of morality and moral education. This could make i t d i f f i c u l t . t o decide whether he believes the notions 'indoctrination' and 'indoctrinating' can appropriately be used to refer to the passing on of beliefs not ordinarily labelled "controversial" or "value-laden," for 19 example mathematics and science (White, 1967). Peters suggests, how-ever, that 'indoctrination' "has something to do with doctrines which are species of beliefs. These have to be understood and assented to i n some embryonic way" (EE41). Since we usually associate 'doctrines' with p o l i t i c a l , religious and moral beliefs, i t i s safe for us to assume that Peters believes 'indoctrination' i s typically associated with p o l i t i c s , religion and morality, and that the notion should be c l a r i f i e d at least with respect to these subjects. Indoctrination, he concludes, i s a "form of instruction," a special manner of instruction (RC17)J It involves the passing on of fixed beliefs " i n a way which discourages questions about their v a l i d i t y " (RC17;Fr349; i t a l i c s mine). Bodies of knowledge "with principles immanent i n them," he says, "can be handed on without systematic attempts to explain or j u s t i f y them or to deal honestly with phenomena that do not f i t . " Fixed beliefs are thus perpetuated (EP19). In the context of morality, these fixed beliefs reflect a conform-i s t attitude towards rules and authority—a 'good boy' morality (RC17; Fr349). At some point in our liv e s , we have conformed to.rules and authority. Some degree of conformity may always be desirable. What . concerns Peters i s persons' acceptance of fixed bodies of rules or beliefs as a result of techniques "which: incapacitate (those persons) from adopting c r i t i c a l autonomous attitudes" (RC17; i t a l i c s mine). He speaks of indoctrination as an activity which prevents c r i t i c a l auton-amous .thought. Without engaging in a full-fledged examination of the notion.of 'indoctrination,' I w i l l point out some d i f f i c u l t i e s in Peters' treatment of this concept. My discussion centers on his use of the words "discouragement," "incapacitating," "fixed b e l i e f s , " and "instruction." To pass on fixed beliefs to others i n a way which discourages c r i t i c a l thought about their v a l i d i t y i s not necessarily to incapacitate or prevent persons from later adopting c r i t i c a l attitudes towards those beliefs. In the passing on of religious b e l i e f s , often considered a form of indoctrination, an attractive presentation might discourage assessment of the v a l i d i t y of those beliefs. The claim that such pre-sentation incapacitates or prevents the believer from being c r i t i c a l of those beliefs i s a stronger one than his 'discouragement' notion. On the other hand, the notions 'incapacitating' and 'preventing' both imply 'discouragement.' It i s a necessary condition of indoctrination that an indoctrin-ated person be discouraged i n some way for some period of time from thinking c r i t i c a l l y about his beliefs. Peters, however, does not spell out exactly how such discouragement comes about. Since he does not treat in any d e t a i l the nature of the indoctrinated persons' i n a b i l i t y to c r i t i c a l l y assess his beliefs, we must conclude that Peters' idea of 'discouraging' does not present a very satisfactory necessary condition. Nor i s "discouraging someone from c r i t i c a l thought about his beliefs," just as i t stands, a sufficient condition of 'indoctrination.' There are some instances i n which persons j u s t i f i a b l y discourage others from c r i t i c a l l y assessing their beliefs. To discourage a young adult from c r i t i c a l l y assessing his belief that he has a terminal il l n e s s because of the damage such assessment would do to his mental health, or to dis-courage a woman from determining the truth about her father's past, when 21 such knowledge would result i n pain to herself and others, are both instances where the term 'indoctrination' i s inappropriate. The 'incapacitating' notion, on i t s side, offers conditions which are unnecessarily strong; i t offers neither a necessary nor a sufficient condition of 'indoctrination.' It is sensible to say that someone was indoctrinated into superstitious beliefs, but later saw the f o l l y of those beliefs. As well, an unusually d i f f i c u l t proof for a mathematical theorem may incapacitate a believer in the theorem from assessing his beliefs about that theorem. The incapacitating notion, then, rules out cases that we might very well l i k e to c a l l indoctrination, i.e., those i n which a person later came to assess the beliefs he held, and the incapacitating notion allows cases, e.g., " d i f f i c u l t proofs," for which the label 'indoctrination' may be out of place. Peters' comments about 'discouragement' and 'incapacitating' do point to an important issue about indoctrination: determining what i t i s to pass on beliefs without also passing on grounds for the beliefs. This i s the problem of deter-mining what the indoctrinatory methods consist i n . But the notions of discouragement and incapacitation do l i t t l e in themselves to c l a r i f y features distinctive of 'indoctrination.' In "Indoctrination and Beliefs," T. H. Green argues that indoctrin-ation is that activity which gets another to believe certain things with-out any evidence—he ca l l s i t 'the non-evidential holding of beliefs' (Green, 1972). On his view, we would say that a person had been indoc-trinated i f he believed certain things without seeking evidence or with-out being inclined to question these beliefs. In Peters' words, the indoctrinated person may have been discouraged by the indoctrinator from 22 examining the evidence, or he may have been incapacitated from doing so. Nevertheless, on Green's account, i t i s the way the beliefs are held, i.e., without supporting evidence, that marks out one necessary condition of indoctrination. In using the phrase "fixed beli e f s , " Peters refers, I believe, to the role evidence plays for the person who comes to believe something. The beliefs are fixed in the sense that the indoctrinator believes them to be true and passes them on to the believer i n a non-evidential manner, without "attempts to explain or j u s t i f y them or deal honestly with phenomena that do not f i t " (EE19). The believer comes to hold the beliefs 'non-evidentially'; he has "no grasp of the underlying rationale of his b e l i e f s " (EE41). The believer (and probably also the indoctrin-ator) do not hold up for check the v a l i d i t y of the beliefs and the validity of any reasons given for the beliefs. Green's analysis of 'indoctrination' in terms of the 'non-evidential holding of beliefs' i s the best way, I believe, to get clear what Peters means by his notion of a "fixed b e l i e f . " But we may also be persuaded to assess the notion of a "fixed belief" by attending to the "inclinations" or "dispositions" which accompany having the belief. In cases of 'indoctrination,' we could say that a belief i s "fixed" in the sense that persons feel something, or are moved in certain ways by the belief (or, in the case of insensi-t i v i t i e s to suffering, are less inclined to "move" or "be moved" by i t ) . The indoctrinated person often appears to be committed to the beliefs for the satisfaction, comfort, guidance these beliefs give him. An indoctrinated person may not worry about—he may give no thought t o — the val i d i t y of his beliefs. And he may also be inclined to perpetuate these beliefs i n others.* Although we might believe that one upshot of indoctrination—one feature of the indoctrinated person—is his tendency to have strong feelings or commitments to the b e l i e f s , content or subject-matter, we should not conclude, because of this, that 'having a strong commitment to the b e l i e f is a necessary condition of 'being indoctrinated.' To say that an indoctrinated person gives the appearance of being strongly committed to a belief is not to say that an indoctrinated person necessarily i s committed to a belief because of the satisfaction or comfort i t gives him, nor i s i t to say that he i s committed to the belief in the sense of perpetuating this belief i n others. An indoc-trinated person may believe something simply because he genuinely thinks the belief is true. Indoctrinated persons, in other words, do tend to have strong commitments to their beliefs, but that may only be because we normally speak of indoctrination when the beliefs are "value-laden," and not because strong feelings are characteristic of non-evidentially held beliefs. In explicating the notion of indoctrination, then, we should concentrate on the reasons why the indoctrinated person takes certain beliefs to be true. To examine the reasons why an indoctrin-ated person believes as he does i s , in part at least, to examine the method or manner by which the beliefs were presented to him. Peters speaks of the a c t i v i t y of indoctrinating or indoctrination *For an example1 of this view of the indoctrinated person, see Association for Values Education and Research (AVER). Prejudice; Teacher's Manual. Toronto: OISE Publications, 1978, p. 2. 24 as a method or manner of instruction. Now a manner of method of instruc-tion which gets persons committed to beliefs without encouraging the assessment of those beliefs i s , on the face of i t , a case of indoctrin-ation. Some may argue, however, whether the necessary method or manner of the indoctrinator be one of instruction and whether instruction always implies intentions on the instructor/indoctrinator's part to get persons to hold the particular beliefs which the indoctrinated person holds non-evident i a l l y . Part of the d i f f i c u l t y with assessing Peters' claim about indoc-trination as a method of instruction l i e s with his own analysis of 'in-struction.' As we w i l l see (p. 39), Peters suggests that "instructing" means engaging in many different kinds of a c t i v i t i e s so as to "get per-sons up to certain standards," or, as he puts i t , to help them to acquire knowledge. He intimates that the acquisition of this knowledge does not necessarily mean that these persons see the rationale behind the facts or information imparted. His notion of "teaching" covers that function. For most persons, however, the notion of "instruction" does carry with i t the idea that the rationale "behind the facts" jLs_ revealed to the learner; on this understanding, "instruction" differs l i t t l e from "teaching." Moreover, the notion of "acquiring knowledge" suggests something more or different from "acquiring beliefs"; "knowledge" suggests some j u s t i f i -cation or rationale for the b e l i e f s . Suppose, however, we accept Peters' view that instruction merely involves the imparting of "facts" or information (i.e., beliefs) without giving the underlying rationale for those beliefs. Can we say that 'indoctrinatory methods' must consist in some instructional activity? To test this claim, we would need to construct cases where persons come to hold beliefs non-evidentially but where there seems to be no method or manner of instruction. A case in point might be one i n which sexist and/or racist beliefs and attitudes were upshots or consequences of certain i n s t i t u t i o n a l , conventional, customary or habitual arrange-ments. Such beliefs (e.g., that women and non-whites are inferior and ought to be kept at their present status), are certainly common; we would most l i k e l y say that persons hold these beliefs non-evidentially. Moreover, there need be no obvious instructional methods employed to get persons to have these be l i e f s , although there may be. Would we, however, c a l l these cases of indoctrination, or would we simply say that these cases "exhibit elements" of indoctrination ( i . e . , these "elements" being the non-evidentially held beliefs)? If we said the latter, then we would be implying that a "full-fledged" case of indoctrination included more than the "upshot" (the way the beliefs were held). No doubt we would say this "something more" was the intention behind the manner or method of the indoctrinator, whether or not we con-ceived of the 'indoctrinator' as an individual or an "i n s t i t u t i o n . " * To classify an activity as indoctrination, then, i s to suggest that there was some intention to get persons to hold beliefs without giving the supporting evidence for those beliefs; indeed, there may have been . none to give. I conclude that Peters is right to say there must be some kind of instruction necessary to indoctrination, at least some kind of intention *See, for example, AVER, Prejudice, p. 3. 26 behind the indoctrinator's methods. But the instruction and/or inten-tions to indoctrinate may not be as clear or as obvious as Peters seems to suggest they are. Let us now look at Peters' reasons for objecting to 'indoctrina-tion' as an 'educational process.' In his view, the indoctrinator vio-lates the 'wittingness and voluntariness' of the learner by not revealing evidence for beliefs nor encouraging the learner to check the validity of these beliefs. This is objectionable on 'moral' grounds, he says, since i t does not respect the learner's capacity to think c r i t i c a l l y and autonomously. Peters believes that the goal of education is to promote desirable forms of knowledge and understanding, and he also believes that "understanding" involves knowing the underlying rationale, the "why" of things. Hence, i t follows, along this line of argument, that 'indoc-trination' cannot be an educational process. Suppose, however, i t could be shown that one's respect for a learner's capacity to think c r i t i c a l l y was somehow maintained in the face of "failure to reveal" evidence for a belief to the learner. Could one escape the charge that he was indoctrinating (or, perhaps, claim that indoctrination was "educational")? Peters' word 'capacity' is an ambiguous one here. As an educator, I could maintain that I respected a learner's capacity to think c r i t i c -a l l y even though I did not "reveal evidence" about a belief to the learner (1) i f I was f a i r l y certain that the learner could not, at this time, comprehend the evidence; (2) i f I was convinced that the learner's c r i t i c a l assessment, at the time of introducing the belief, would interfere with my purpose for getting him to hold the belief; or 27 (3) i f I believed, not that the learner's c r i t i c a l assessment would interfere with my purposes, but that such c r i t i c a l assessment by the learner was dependent upon his coming to have the b e l i e f , i . e . , that having the belief (acting on i t ) was l o g i c a l l y prior to his c r i t i c a l assessment of i t . Peters might reply to this that i f , for any of the above reasons, I did not reveal the evidence to a learner, I would not be respecting the learner as an autonomous person. If the learner was an adult, I would probably agree. With children, however, the case may be d i f f e r -ent. Part of the d i f f i c u l t y i n resolving this question i s to decide what "revealing the evidence" ±s_ i n the case of getting persons to hold and act on moral beliefs. Is i t holding up a j u s t i f i c a t i o n for the moral rules? Is i t pointing out various principles, or the reasons for adopting those principles? Or i s "moral evidence" more than "giv-ing reasons": i s i t being respectful and loving to the learner, perhaps also being a model of moral behaviour oneself? For moral educators concerned with getting others to 'be moral,' these issues are obviously of importance; especially so since i t is a common assumption among moral educators that getting others to 'be moral' i s , at the least, to get them to hold beliefs about (as well as to act on) the moral rules. In Peters' treatment of indoctrination, he pays scant attention to the notion of revealing evidence to children for the moral beliefs we may want them to have. He does try to show, however, that moral beliefs can be derived from the fundamental principles pre-supposed by moral discourse. This we w i l l see in Chapter 3. In sum, Peters' account of 'indoctrination' sweeps l i g h t l y over the manner or style of instruction which results i n a person's unques-tioning acceptance of beliefs. Nor does he sa t i s f a c t o r i l y apply his general comments about indoctrination to the notion of evidencing moral beliefs. In his discussions of 'indoctrination,' he neglects to t e l l what evidence for a moral belief looks l i k e , and how evidence for a moral belief can be revealed to a believer so that the believer w i l l come to hold the belief "on the evidence." In his brief statements about 'in-doctrination,' he also neglects the question whether revealing reasons for moral beliefs can be called indoctrinatory i f the reasons for these beliefs are beyond the comprehension of the believer, or i f presenting reasons interferes with persons coming to have the beliefs, or i f the believer must come to have (act on) the beliefs before he assesses them c r i t i c a l l y . Peters also omits to consider whether we can label institutions, conventions or customs 'indoctrinatory' i f "fixed b e l i e f s " are passed on. This i s a less serious charge perhaps. But moral educators, presumably, must make inroads on answers to these questions i f they are to be certain that what they do i s not indoctrination. It i s l i k e l y , however, that educators may fee l compelled to get children simply to hold and act on some moral be l i e f s , whether or not these children hold the beliefs on the evidence. In these circumstances, educators may or may not prefer to c a l l what they are doing "indoctrination." C. Conditioning Peters sees 'indoctrination' as antithetical to the sense of edu-cation in which knowledge and understanding are central. He allows some place for conditioning techniques, however, i n the enterprise of 29 education. We must find out now what he understands by conditioning and why he objects to i t on moral grounds; then assess his reasons for allowing conditioning procedures as "aids to," but not "processes of" education. A clue to Peters' objection to classifying conditioning as an edu-cational process is his frequent statement that while indoctrination con-cerns the inculcation of beliefs, conditioning primarily concerns behavi-our (EE42). A l l those concerned with the moral education of the young are no doubt "interested i n " behaviour. But those who think i n terms of conditioning youngsters, Peters maintains, are "interested i n " bring-ing about particular behaviours i n children, eig., being tidy or respect-f u l . Peters too i s concerned that people behave (act) in certain ways, but he wants them to behave in these ways because there are good reasons, and they see that there are good reasons, for so behaving. Peters' determination to probe the adequacy of the 'conditioned behaviour' or 'behaviouristic' approach to psychological explanation led him to analyze c r i t i c a l l y the conception of human nature upon which this approach was based. Finding that the largest part of the study of psychology assumed simplistic conceptions of human conduct (even sim-p l i s t i c conceptions of animal conduct from which inferences were made to human conduct), Peters persuasively argued an alternative, "more logic-a l l y adequate" account (CM; ME; B). Peters made clear his belief (shared by educators and philosophers as far back as Aristotle and elaborated by writers up to the present), that humans act, they do things for reasons or out of certain motives or intentions. Humans are not just bundles of 'nerve-endings,' responding 30 to 'stimuli.' They are not only subject to "happenings" or "reactions." Humans are agents, Peters i n s i s t s ; they do things, they make things happen. Behaviourism f a i l s to acknowledge action, reason and motive accounts of human conduct because i t f a i l s to distinguish between move-ments and actions. Behaviourism cannot succeed, then, in i t s attempt to provide adequate explanations of human conduct. Peters scrutinizes two techniques of behaviouristic psychology: 'classical conditioning' and 'operant conditioning,' and assesses their value for education. Classical conditioning, associated with the early dog and pigeon experiments of Pavlov and with the recent writings of the "radical behaviourist" B. F. Skinner, " i s concerned with reactions such as s a l i -vation and eye-blinks and simple movements which are not seen as bring-ing about anything by the subject" (EE42). Random movements are positively rewarded or negatively punished; these constitute 'reinforce-ments.' Peters finds no d i f f i c u l t y in dismissing c l a s s i c a l conditioning as an educational process since i t i s "concerned only with involuntary behaviour" (EP12). Injecting adrenalin into the body, administering drugs, stimulating by electrodes and other methods of (classical) con-ditioning, he says, "do not of themselves bring about knowledge and understanding" (EEml74). Operant conditioning, also associated with the work of Skinner, bears some resemblance to an educational process, but i t would be a mistake, Peters continues, to think that i t i s one (Kazepides, 1976). In simple operant conditioning experiments, the subject makes random movements, one of which may result in a reward. The subject i s 31 said to have been conditioned when his movements are less randomized, more directly related to goal attainment (e.g., subject presses the lever which rewards with a pellet of food; subject avoids the buzzer which shocks). In more complex experimental situations, the operant condi-tioner s t i l l sees 'goal-directed behaviours' and 'reinforcements' in simple terms (Kazepides, op_. cit . ) . In non-experimental 'educational' settings, the notions 'goal,' 'means,' 'reinforcements' are also simply spelled out, but refer to quite diverse and complex "goings-on": from the recitation of 2+2=4, to reading a book; from switching off a light upon leaving a room, to "being favorably disposed towards other persons." Behaviourists not only appear to reduce a l l educational procedures and a l l learnings to operant conditioned responses, they claim that the notions 'education,' 'knowledge,' 'learning' and 'understanding' make l i t t l e sense when divorced from the notion of 'conditioned responses.' Peters, by contrast, argues that 'education' and 'understanding' make l i t t l e sense when thought of as 'conditioned responses.' The chief mistake of Behaviourism, says Peters, l i e s i n i t s assumption that the proposition 'being disposed to effect a particular result' implies a second proposition 'the subject moves so as to bring about the goal,' (the subject sees his movement as instrumental to the goal-attainment). The f i r s t proposition, however, does not require that the subject believe his movement and the goal are connected. Nor does the f i r s t proposition carry the suggestion that the subject w i l l adapt or vary his behaviour so as to reach the goal. The subject simply moves and the goal i s reached. A pattern of behaviour is "stamped i n " which we might falsely regard as an achievement on the sub-32 ject's part (EP13). The second proposition implies that a pattern of behaviour i s established because i t i s seen by the subject to be a cor-rect way to attain the goal. Modifications i n the subject's behaviour follow i f the subject sees other 'correct' ways of attaining the goal. The second proposition, then, implies beliefs on the subject's p a r t — which the f i r s t does n o t — b e l i e f s about correct ways of behaving. In operant conditioning, asserts Peters, "what has to be learned is not grasped by the learner to start with, i f ever, as being instru-mentally related to what counts as reinforcement" (EP12), because i n operant conditioning there i s no place for the subject's beliefs or con-cepts under which he views his behaviour, the goal and the 'reinforce-ment. ' "There i s no consciousness i n conditioning of what has to be learnt as a task" (EP13). On the operant conditioning paradigm, most educational goals—learning that X, learning to be X, learning X, learn-ing to X—cannot be accounted for. "A man," he says, "might be condi-tioned to avoid dogs or induced to do something by hypnotic suggestion. But we could not describe this as 'education' i f he did not know what he was learning while he was learning i t " (EI91). How, then, can Peters allow conditioning procedures as aids to education i f he rules them out as processes of education? We must be clear here on his use of the word 'aid.' He explains this while dis-cussing the learning of moral rules: At the early stages of moral learning, aids to learning, which are developments of conditioning such as rewards and punishments, praise and blame, are extremely important . . . and their importance . . . is not d i f f i c u l t to understand. For a child has not just got to learn how to apply concepts correctly; he has also to learn to behave consistently in the required way. Rules must regulate something and what they regulate are human inclinations. Children, 33 have, therefore, to start off their moral l i f e with some kind of habit training. . . . (Since) their counter-inclinations are strong . . . wanting something now or wanting something at other people's expense . . . insistence by parents on rules often has to be backed by extrinsic aids such as rewards and approval in order to provide positive incentives to outweigh the p u l l of the child's inclinations. And so simple habits are bu i l t up. (RC64; i t a l i c s mine; also ML366) He says that parents have an option of supplementing example and instruction by the positive extrinsic aids of rewards or approval or by the negative ones of punishment and disapproval. He points to "strong evidence" from research in psychology supporting the view that positive aids are more conducive to moral learning. "The hypothesis i s that punitive and rejecting techniques militate against attention, and hence against learning, by producing anxiety; (they) undermine the child's confidence i n himself" (RC65). Peters sees that "developments of conditioning" techniques are aids to education, then, because he believes habits must be built up in the early stages of moral learning, that children must learn to conform their behaviour to rules, and that children's inclinations must be regulated. He assumes that such regulation of desire and inclination is necessary, and that this i s best done using techniques of praise and blame, especially praise. Praising and blaming, he believes, are essential in helping children to understand moral concepts and are essential to getting children to behave in the required way. Peters calls praising, approving, blaming, and disapproving "developments of conditioning" and "conditioning aids" because these techniques could not be considered either operant or cl a s s i c a l condi-tioning techniques on his own s t r i c t account of these. Praising and 34 blaming are used to r e i n f o r c e and change a c h i l d ' s behaviour but they do t h i s , presumably, by h e l p i n g the c h i l d to develop h i s understanding of what he i s doing. G i v i n g a c h i l d p r a i s e and blame has some e f f e c t on a c h i l d ' s b e l i e f s , and t h i s change i n or development of h i s b e l i e f s i s r e l a t e d i n some way to a change i n h i s behaviour. Peters assumes that when p r a i s e and blame are used, t h e r e i s some k i n d of c o n d i t i o n i n g t a k i n g p l a c e ; moreover he assumes t h a t these t e c h -niques are the procedures which are r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the c o n d i t i o n i n g . The q u e s t i o n which can be put t o Pet e r s i s t h i s : when i s he ever sure t h a t the use of these "developments of c o n d i t i o n i n g " are the ones e f f i -c acious i n g e t t i n g the c h i l d to r e g u l a t e h i s i n c l i n a t i o n s ? How can he s i n g l e out these techniques as the ones r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the c h i l d ' s conformity t o r u l e s ? These q u e s t i o n s are p a r t i c u l a r l y important ones, f o r as we w i l l see, P e t e r s b e l i e v e s that " e d u c a t i o n a l p r o c e s s e s " ( i n -s t r u c t i o n and example) are necessary too, i n h e l p i n g the c h i l d to develop and enlarge h i s understanding of moral concepts, and i n g e t t i n g him t o behave i n the r e q u i r e d way. Pet e r s assumes that there i s some r e a l d i f f e r e n c e between "developments of c o n d i t i o n i n g " ( a i d s ) and e d u c a t i o n a l processes ( i n s t r u c t i o n , g i v i n g examples, g i v i n g r e asons). But i t i s not e n t i r e l y c l e a r on what b a s i s he makes t h i s d i s t i n c t i o n ; i t i s not c l e a r , i n f a c t , whether the d i s t i n c t i o n can be maintained. D. Processes of Education We must now attend to the processes of education, "the f a m i l y of tasks l e a d i n g up to the achievement of being educated." Being educated i n v o l v e s a c q u i r i n g some s k i l l s , knowledge and understanding of p r i n c i p l e s . Peters examines the tas k s which he b e l i e v e s b r i n g these l e a r n i n g s about. 35 Again, his discussion turns on examples from moral education. 1.. Training 'Training' is a term appropriately used, Peters writes, with refer-ence to the learning of s k i l l s where a combination of practice and instruction are necessary, and where correction and example are often helpful. S k i l l s include bicycle riding, shooting, swimming and swinging a golf club; they have a close connection with bodily movements. The concept of 'training,' Peters believes, has application when (1) there i s some specifiable type of performance that has to be mastered; (2) practice i s required for the mastery of i t ; and (3) l i t t l e emphasis is placed on the underlying rationale (EP15). But the concept of 'training,' he continues, also has application "whenever anything coming up to a clear-cut specification has to be learned." He offers as examples here the inculcation of habits such as punctuality, tidiness and honesty. Habit-learning is not simply learn-ing a know-how or knack. These habits cannot be 'picked up' as can s k i l l s . In order for someone to develop habits of punctuality, t i d i -ness and honesty, he must have a whole range of action-concepts. He cannot learn what 'stealing' i s (for instance) just by watching others. For he cannot t e l l what an action i s just from the out-side: he also has to know how the agent conceived what he i s doing. The notion of theft cannot be tied down . . . to any specifiable range of bodily movements . . . there are an i n f i n i t e number of ways" ofappropriating (concepts of stealing, theft) . . . therefore there must be instruction and correction as well as practice and imitation, i f a child i s to learn not to steal. (EP15ff.) 'Moral training,' he continues, is different from 'moral educa-tion.' Moral training suggests the learning of habits, which in turn suggests the learning of a moral co(de "tied down to specifiable rules." 36 Moral education, on the other hand, suggests "the passing on of the underlying rationale, the underlying principles." But 'moral training,' he says "involves much more than know-how or knack. The child must learn that certain classes of action are wrong. Such knowledge could never just be 'caught'." Unlike the learning of s k i l l s for which prac-tice and imitation are necessary and instruction and example are helpful, Peters believes that the learning of moral habits requires not only prac-tice and imitation but also instruction and example. And this is because concepts peculiar to the moral rules must be learned. To assess Peters' work on the educational process he c a l l s 'train-ing, ' we must try to determine whether he appropriately uses the notions 'practicing' and 'training' to explain habituation to moral rules. We must also ask, of course, whether his notion of 'habituation to moral rules' makes sense; this we w i l l do more f u l l y i n Chapter 4. F i r s t , Peters is correct to point out that a person learning the moral rules must come to understand a number of concepts, an example of which i s the concept 'stealing.' He is also correct to say that there are a number of different sorts of things which can count as stealing, and that seeing something as 'stealing' is not seeing movements of various sorts but is 'seeing' such movements under different descriptions (as 'actions'), i n which agents' intentions and reasons are central. Second, in his consideration of the child's learning of moral rules and concepts peculiar to them, Peters i s probably correct to say that some kind of instruction, including the giving of examples, and some kind of imitative behaviour on the learner's part are both necessary. At any rate, i t i s d i f f i c u l t to quarrel with his assertion that the child "must come to learn that some classes of action are wrong." As I have hinted, however, Peters' suggestion that learning these rules and rule-concepts necessitates practice i s a more problematic one. By the notion of 'habituation to moral rules,' I assume Peters means being disposed to act on these rules, in contrast to just knowing or knowing about the rules (e.g., being able to pick out instances of the concept 'stealing' for the rule "Do not steal"). Rule-learning in this disposition sense implies learning not to steal (a logical precondition of which i s knowing what 'stealing' i s , as he suggests). We have now to test his notion of 'practice* against the disposition sense of rule-learning. ' In his introductory comments on 'training,' Peters attends to the training of s k i l l s , attainments which involve bodily movements. Prac-ti c i n g the bodily movements which make up s k i l l s involves repetition without, he says, any implication of a rationale for the practice for particular moves. In extending 'training' to cases of moral habits or moral rule-learning, Peters concentrates on 'coming to know what stealing i s . ' 'Stealing' i s suggestive of actions, not movements, and i t presupposes other concepts, e.g., 'possession.' He does not attend to the kind of practice or repetition he believes is required to learn to be disposed to act on the moral rule 'Do not steal'—that i s , learning not to steal—other than to mention that habituation to a moral rule 'Do not steal' implies learning not to steal. F i r s t , the notion of practicing makes some sense in the context of learning what the concept 'stealing' i s about. He says in another section that "a certain amount of practice i s required for the child to learn to use necessary concepts; but nothing l i k e the same amount as in the case of s k i l l s " (EP17). We might imagine that the person could "try out" information he has about what constitutes stealing. He might do this either by himself or i n the company of an instructor (e.g., parent or teacher). By "trying out" or "practicing" the appli-cation of this concept, the person may learn what are correct examples and what are incorrect examples of stealing; he may, i n doing so, come to have the concept 'stealing. 1 Even here, the notion of "practicing" i s a rather odd one. But can we make any sense of Peters' suggestion that a person i s 'trained' in the moral rules, and that this training i s achieved largely by practicing? This question gains in importance when we realize that moral rules, when formulated, are usually worded as injunctions against doing certain things. We may be caught here in a bind, a 'logical bind.' If we interpret 'practicing the moral rules' to mean the repe-t i t i o n of movements, as with the practicing of s k i l l s , then on Peters' suggestion, we have not attended to the proper features of moral rule-learning, i.e., that they involve seeing "movements" under a different aspect (as actions). Along this line of argument, we might conclude that i f "practicing the moral rules" means the repeated following of (or obedience to) the moral rules, practicing i s unnecessary or " l o g i c a l l y odd," or both. We could interpret Peters' phrase "practicing or training in the moral rules," however, in a different way. Suppose we wanted to get a child not to steal. We might do this by punishing him every time he was tempted to s t e a l but didn' t . We could say that we were g i v i n g him some p r a c t i c e i n not s t e a l i n g — t h a t we were t r a i n i n g him i n the moral r u l e 'Do not s t e a l . ' We would not n e c e s s a r i l y mean by t h i s that hie knew the r u l e he was a c t i n g on was a moral r u l e . We would simply be g e t t i n g h i m — t r a i n i n g him—not to s t e a l by means of punishment and p r a i s e . And we might carry out t h i s endeavour quite independently of our attempts to convince him that s t e a l i n g was morally wrong. This i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of Peters' claim, I b e l i e v e , makes the most sense. I t makes more sense, I b e l i e v e , than saying that we must t r a i n a c h i l d i n the moral r u l e i f by t h i s Peters means that the c h i l d must respond i n a p a r t i c u l a r way because' he b e l i e v e s the r u l e to be a moral one. As we w i l l see i n Chapter 4, Peters does not b e l i e v e the best form of developing moral habits i n youngsters i s by d r i l l or p r a c t i c e or t r a i n i n g ; he emphasizes reason-giving as the best way of forming "adaptable h a b i t s " i n c h i l d r e n . At the same time, he i s reluctant to give up the notions " p r a c t i c e , " " t r a i n i n g , " "movement," and those methods he l o o s e l y c l a s s i f i e s as "non-cognitive" ones. Given Peters' ambivalence on t h i s point, we must s e r i o u s l y question whether he pre-sents a c l e a r p i c t u r e of how moral development takes place, and a c l e a r p i c t u r e of what he expects of the moral educator. 2. I n s t r u c t i o n For Peters, 'being educated' implies the development of a concep-t u a l scheme "that has to be f i t t e d to phenomena," and t h i s suggests that teachers must use the language meaningfully. I n s t r u c t i o n and explana-t i o n are as e s s e n t i a l to educating persons, he claims, as the persons' own f i r s t - h a n d experience. Properly conducted, i n s t r u c t i o n and 40 explanation w i l l be geared to the conceptual level of the learner. Under "instructional a c t i v i t i e s , " Peters groups the following: confronting children with relevant experiences, presenting to children things which are related to their stage of development, asking the right questions at the appropriate time, answering questions, guiding the experiences of the child i n various directions (EP17). He does not say how many of these a c t i v i t i e s are necessary to 'instructing.' In fact, he shies away from a serious analysis of the concept, hinting only that in "instructing" our aim is to get persons up to certain standards ("acquiring knowledge"). Noticeably, he does not demand that instruc-tion include presentation of the rationale behind the facts or informa-tion imparted. He leaves this function to 'teaching.' 3. Teaching and Learning Principles Peters believes that the main aim of education and of teaching i s to get students to learn (understand) principles. Such understanding does not necessarily come about by "accumulation of items of knowledge." It requires reflection "(so that) principles can illuminate the facts" (EP18). Peters looks b r i e f l y at what is necessary for the acquisition of learning of principles: (a) acquiring ("in some way") a lot of knowledge. In science, this means acquiring a mass pf empirical generalizations; in morals i t means acquiring 'low-level' rules or assumptions. Understanding prin-ciples cannot be separated from the acquisition of knowledge of this 'low-level' sort. (b) coming to see that principles are "appealed to i n order to 41 substantiate . . . and give unity to lower order ones." This i s achieved, he says, by "explanation and teaching" and by a "selective survey of the many." 'Teaching' suggests that a rationale behind the s k i l l s or body of knowledge i s to be grasped. Peters emphasizes understanding the rationale "behind" s k i l l s and bodies of knowledge because he believes that knowledge and c r i t i c a l thought about that knowledge, are necessary to avoid indoctrination: "the passing on of fixed b e l i e f s . " But ' c r i t i c a l c l a r i f i c a t i o n ' of principles (the discussion and j u s t i f i c a t i o n of principles) i s a very different exercise from applying principles i n concrete circumstances. Applying principles requires "judgment," he says, which probably comes through experience " i n the presence of those who already have i t . " Understanding the rationale behind facts i s important, Peters believes, to avoid being indoctrinated and to learn to apply principles. In this section, we have seen that Peters' analysis of the concept 'education' and his analyses of 'educational processes' center on examples drawn from morality and moral education. Just how closely he views the enterprise of general education and the enterprise of moral education w i l l become clearer in the section to follow. E. Peters on Worthwhile A c t i v i t i e s Before outlining Peters' views on moral education, I give some attention to an issue controversial among some moral educators: deciding what the scope of moral education shall be. One of Peters' notions, "the i n i t i a t i o n of persons into worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s , " has provided fuel for current debate. The question of what constitutes 'morality, 1 however, i s obviously not a new one. I begin with an objection against Peters' claim that i n i t i a t i n g a person into worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s i s a 'moral matter.' I continue with a note on his "worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s . " F i n a l l y , I present and assess five interpretations of his claim. The f i f t h of these holds the best p o s s i b i l i t i e s , I believe, for the task of morally educating persons. In stating my preference for the f i f t h interpretation over the third or fourth, I depart from what is Peters' probable intent in making the claim. But I point out the worthwhileness of his view for those edu-cators, who, l i k e myself, conceive differently the task of moral educa-tion. 1. The Argument Against Peters ' The objection to Peters' view runs thus. Morality has to do with interpersonal conduct, primarily with agents' avoidance of harm and pre-vention of harm to other persons. The main and perhaps only thrust of moral education should be to get persons to refl e c t on, and to act i n accordance with, rules and principles which have to do with this primary concern. If we accepted Peters' view of the 'moral,' we would include as necessary tasks of moral education, a c t i v i t i e s whose aim i s to help persons avoid and prevent harm to others, and a c t i v i t i e s which encourage the " i n i t i a t i o n " of which he speaks. His view of moral education is therefore wider than the f i r s t view. In a l l likelihood, i t stands less chance of successful accomplishment. We should reject his claim, so the argument goes, and attend only to what i s of central importance in morality.* *I know of no recorded objection to Peters' claim that the i n i t i a -tion of persons into worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s i s a 'moral' matter. 2. Worthwhile Ac t i v i t i e s A 'worthwhile activity,' for Peters, i s one which has ' i n t r i n s i c d e s i r a b i l i t y , ' one which i s "pursued for i t s own sake." He speaks fre-quently and with some enthusiasm of 'i n t r i n s i c interest' and 'i n t r i n s i c desirability' (EE144ff). But he is often ambivalent about the activ-i t i e s which "have" this feature and the state of mind of the person so engaged. He allows that persons might pursue many kinds of a c t i v i t i e s for their " i n t r i n s i c interest." But he also states his belief that the only ' i n t r i n s i c a l l y interesting or desirable' a c t i v i t i e s are those for which public standards or c r i t e r i a of excellence apply. He means that ac t i v i t i e s are worthwhile (1) i f they hold the attention of the partic-ipant, and (2) i f participants could perform them more or less well according to standards. His most common examples are ones we recognize as subject-areas or disciplines l i k e history or mathematics. Occasion-a l l y he allows—but with much less ardour—practical a c t i v i t i e s l i k e cookery, archery and motor mechanics. These a c t i v i t i e s can a l l be done more or less well according to certain standards of performance. But the 'core subjects' or what he frequently ca l l s "the public modes of thought" or "the forms of l i f e , " have standards of reasoning "built into them." Peters rules out bingo and pushpin as worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s . Someone may engage in these, his attention riveted. But no one could perform them more or less well according to public standards of excel-lence. One does not reason in the performance of bingo, he says; "standards of reasoning" here makes no sense. Clearly, Peters places great value upon the development of reasoning a b i l i t i e s (rationality). He comfortably labels as 'worth-while' or ' i n t r i n s i c a l l y desirable' those a c t i v i t i e s which require reasoning i n the pursuit of them. And of these, he favours the so-called "theoretical p u r s u i t s " — a c t i v i t i e s which involve distinctive methods of evidencing claims and beliefs. 3. Interpretations of Peters' Claim We now turn to Peters' claim that the i n i t i a t i o n of persons into worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s i s a moral matter. (a) The 'methods of education' interpretation We could interpret Peters' claim to mean that the i n i t i a t i o n of persons into worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s should be done by methods which respect the person's rationality, i.e., "morally unobjectionable methods." If this i s what he intends, i t does not d i f f e r from earlier views he expresses on the processes which can be called 'educational.' We should say that Peters uses the term 'moral education' in two d i f f e r -ent senses: to refer to the conduct of general education, broadly con-ceived; and to refer to a c l a s s i f i c a t i o n within general education, l i k e mathematics, history or science education. But i t i s with this second classificatory sense of 'moral education' that we are concerned here, and in the light of which we must assess his comment. The 'methods of education' interpretation, then, i s an implausible one because i t does not delineate the content of the subject 'moral education.' (b) The 'empirical' interpretation By his claim, Peters could mean that those who are engaged in worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s are also those who are "disposed to take the moral point of view." This i s an interesting empirical hypothesis open to confirmation or disconfirmation. But as there i s l i t t l e textual evi-dence to suggest this i s Peters' intent; i t seems an unlikely interpre-tation. (c) The 'human ideal' interpretation The i n i t i a t i o n of persons into worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s may be a matter so important, so serious to Peters, that he describes or evalu-ates this as a matter of "moral" concern. Such i n i t i a t i o n has the "highest" of goals: to develop persons' rational capacities. It reflects an ideal of human achievement. Without doubt, Peters thinks that the development of persons' rational capacities i s a very serious matter. But i f he considers this an "ideal" of human achievement, surely he would not recommend that everyone adopt this ideal. There are other "ideals" i n terms of which one can govern one's conduct or towards which a person can direct his actions; at least Strawson suggests that there are (Strawson, 1970). Many of these—for example the "ideal" of asceticism—is not primarily concerned with the development of rationality (reasoning a b i l i t i e s ) . (d) The 'ethical excellences' interpretation Peters gives evidence in his writing of adopting what could be called an "Aristotelian" approach to education. A l l education for Peters is moral or "ethical" education. Education i s , or should be about the i n i t i a t i o n of persons into a l l sorts of a c t i v i t i e s , and the more the better: the visual arts, music, p o l i t i c s , cooking, physical education, the literary s k i l l s , history and mathematics. Educators should be concerned that persons being educated strive for excellence a l l these f i e l d s ; by striving for these goals they w i l l develop and xn 4 6 enhance their personalities and characters. For (c) above, educators might consider i t their responsibility to cultivate i n others an appreciation for music, because music i s a worth-while activity. Educators might consider that i t was their moral responsibility to do so: i t would be wrong for them not to cultivate i n others the enjoyment of music. For (d) however, educators might think that they ought to include music and worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s as part of the curriculum of moral education because these a c t i v i t i e s are themselves ethical excellences. An "ethical" (moral) education here would consist of any a c t i v i t i e s which are worthwhile. The 'ethical excellences' interpretation probably best reflects Peters' intent. Accepting this interpretation as the basis for moral education, however, has i t s d i f f i c u l t i e s : we would be committed to in i t i a t i n g persons into a wide variety of areas (excellences), and this would make moral education v i r t u a l l y coextensive with general education. (e) The knowledge and s k i l l s components of 'avoiding harm' There i s a f i f t h interpretation of the claim that the i n i t i a t i o n of persons into worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s i s a "moral matter." In this, 'morality' and 'moral education' are centrally concerned with the avoid-ance of harm. If persons are to be morally educated—if they are to learn to avoid and prevent harmful acts to others—they ought to acquire a range of s k i l l s , a b i l i t i e s , beliefs and dispositions. They ought to know, for example, how to verify relevant empirical b e l i e f s , to under-stand a range of moral concepts (e.g., 'rights'), and to know the causal consequences of certain actions. A moral educator who adopted this "narrower" interpretation of 47 'morality' and 'moral education' could well advocate the i n i t i a t i o n of persons into worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s . He might do so because he believed (a) that the knowledge, s k i l l s and dispositions gained from such i n i t i a -tion were i n some sense "transferable" to moral thought and action; or because he believed (b) that an empirically necessary method for getting persons to be moral was to engage persons i n "worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s . " In his talk of the "rational passions," Peters gives us some i n d i -cation that he believes (a); this w i l l become clearer i n Chapter 5. My own view i s that (b) i s a reasonable suggestion. Initiating persons into "worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s " undoubtedly helps persons to attain levels of competency i n at least some of the a b i l i t i e s and dispositions which are necessary for being moral. A person's i n i t i a t i o n into worthwhile ac t i v i t i e s would not be necessary, however, for his attaining competency in some moral a b i l i t i e s , namely those of a 'dispositional' sort: f e e l -ing certain things; being sensitive to other persons' hurt or suffering, or carrying out in the c i v i c or p o l i t i c a l realm judgments made on moral grounds. It should be said that Peters does not offer arguments in support of the pursuit of human ideals or excellences—(c) or (d)—over what might be called "other-regarding duties." He admits, in fact, that he often uses a "wide sense of the moral." But he also says that.his primary concern " i s with the following of rules and practices of an interpersonal sort" (FC142). II. Peters on Morality and Moral Education I turn now to some highlights of Peters' account of rational morality and moral education. Many of these arguments and statements I elaborate upon and c r i t i c i z e i n succeeding chapters. In this over-view, I include a few of the differences and si m i l a r i t i e s Peters sees between his conception of morality and the conceptions of others. These remarks help us to understand his position and to place i t within the tradition of moral philosophy. A. Codes, Subjectivism and Rational Morality (RC,9ff.) Peters i s convinced that his view of morality i s more.complex than other views. To others, 'morality' i s a'matter of "love" or "integrity,' or "willing one thing," or "role-related duties" or "conformity to moral codes." One moral philosopher argues that moral decisions are made by "lonely individuals" who "universalize their judgments"; yet another thinks morality i s concerned mainly with "calculations." A l l of these considerations may be parts of the moral l i f e . But each must be seen, says Peters, against a background "provided by the others"; this back-ground is often mistakenly forgotten. Peters encourages people to take their own moral stance, an idea he believes i s based on the l i b e r a l notion of respect for the individual. Encouraging individuals' i n i t i a t i v e i s a vacuous notion, he admits, unless people are introduced to a "moral mode of experience." They must come to share a complex inheritance within which they can "locate and make something of themselves." Herein, he says, l i e s the educa-tional significance of his understanding of morality. He contrasts his view with two general streams of thought. The f i r s t interprets 'morality 1 as a code which prohibits actions such as stealing, sex and being s e l f i s h . 'Code' here i s used to refer to a body of rules which "hang together." Either subscribers to the code do not see the rational basis for such a code, or else that rational basis does not exist. The second interprets 'morality' as a romantic notion, suggestive of individual choices, autonomy, subjective preferences. Notions such as 'authenticity,' 'commitment,' 'likes and di s l i k e s ' figure significantly in descriptions of this view of morality. Advocates of both positions often supply ideas on how to obtain conformity with their goals. Those who think of morality i n the f i r s t sense tend to be authoritarian, and to regard moral education as neces-sa r i l y indoctrinative. Those who think of morality i n the second sense think that any attempt to instruct children i n moral matters i s a form of indoctrination, hence i t must be avoided. Depicting morality i n such either/or terms i s false in Peters' view. In his account of the " h i s t o r i c a l evolution" of a rational form of morality, he claims that the encouragement of discussion and dissent led to the questioning of current codes and standards. B. Principles and Rules (RC , 12 f f . ) Basic to this questioning and debate, certain fundamental prin-ciples were and are presupposed, Peters says, "without which the use of reason would be mere shadow-play." The presuppositions of being reason-able, he says, are those of impartiality, truth-telling, freedom and the consideration of interests. These principles provide point to the giving of reasons. They indicate that " i t matters whether people suffer or whether they satisfy their wants." To these four principles, he adds a f i f t h : respect for persons. This principle accommodates the idea that an individual's view about his own l i f e matters. Each person i s not to be thought of just as an occupant of a role or as a means to someone else's ends. Rather, each person should be regarded with respect, "as a being with a life-space and point of view of his own." When we view codes of conduct (sets of rules) i n terms of these principles, we see differences in the content of such codes. But, says Peters, i t i s important to see at what points such differences i n content become apparent. There are few differences among codes adumbrated as basic rules. Rules are necessary to any continuing form of social l i f e , "man being what he i s and the conditions of l i f e on earth being what they are." He cites here such rules as making and keeping of contracts, non-injury, care of the young and care of property. Above the level of rules, however, "there i s room for any amount of disagreement and development." Sta b i l i t y and consensus at the level of basic rules i s compatible with change and experiment at other levels. Such changes at these other levels must be carried out with sensitivity to the five fundamental principles. These provide general c r i t e r i a of relevance for moral appraisal; they t e l l us what i s a reason and what is not. "They sensitize us to features of people and situations which are morally significant." "A 'form' of experience gradually emerges under which 'contents' deriving from different traditions are f i t t e d . " This form of experience Peters ca l l s 'rational morality.' 51 C. Facets of the Moral Li f e (RC,16ff.) Peters traces the history of that form of l i f e called 'rational morality.' Locke, Butler, Hume, Kant, Price and M i l l contributed to this understanding of morality. In eclectic fashion, Peters draws together what he takes to be the chief features of rational morality: 1. Man has certain wants and takes part in characteristic activ-i t i e s . Terms such as 'good,' 'desirable,' 'worthwhile,' 'well-being,' and 'interest,' he says, "have application here." 2. Man has social roles. Various duties and obligations accom-pany him in his various stations. 3. Rules govern conduct between people. He l i s t s here duties such as fairness, unselfishness and honesty. These, he says, "affect the manner in which a person conducts himself within his a c t i v i t i e s and roles." Such rules are personalized as character-traits. 4. Goals of l i f e . These point to purposes which "derive from non-neutral appraisals" of a situation. Goals of l i f e (ambition, benevolence, envy, greed, love and respect), are personalized i n the form of 'motives.' 5. Character-traits. These determine the manner i n which a man follows or pursues rules. He emphasizes two kinds of t r a i t s : those connected with the w i l l (determination, integrity, conscientiousness, consistency), and those connected with human excellences (autonomy, creativeness, wisdom; these "depend on the development of rational capacities"). Some character-traits and some motives are 'virtues, 1 he says; 52 others are vices. Peters c r i t i c i z e s moral philosophers who " l i k e to impose unity on the moral l i f e by fastening on one or two features of i t . " The U t i l -itarians emphasize only the considerations of interests, largely ignoring general obligations, duties and virtues such as integrity and conscien-tiousness. Kantians apply only an abstract test of impartiality, down-grading 'the good,' ignore social morality (including role-performances), and disregard motives excepting 'respect.' The Intuitionists, he says, are wrong to assert the self-^evidence of principles. Yet Peters sym-pathizes with in t u i t i o n i s t s who construct l i s t s of prima facie duties and obligations—what he cal l s the different 'facets' of the moral l i f e . He i s most impressed with David Hume's understanding of morality because " i t takes account of a l l spheres of morality." Hume's morality emphasizes impartiality and those mental qualities or dispositions agree-able to the individual and to society. Hume admires the individual who pursues what i s 'good,' and approves qualities "useful to society": justice and benevolence. Within this group of socially useful qualities are the natural virtues stemming from universal motives and conventional virtues, e.g., justice (RC20). Peters sees two major weaknesses in Hume's account: the discussion of justice i n the Enquiry and the "thin account" of reasons-Hume's concep-tion of the "disinterested passions." In light of his criticisms of Hume, we would do well to scrutinize Peters' own analyses of 'justice' and 'reason' i n morals; this w i l l be done i n Chapters 3 to 5 . Finally, Peters demarcates two distinct features of rational morality which, he believes, integrate the best features of the ethical 53 systems put forward by moral philosophers: (1) the form of morality which i s given by the five fundamental "procedural" principles, "the presuppositions of being reasonable"; and (2) the content of morality which i s given by accounts of (a) what a man's interests are, and of what i s good and desirable; (b) what a man's role and duties are as he takes part i n institutionalized social practices; (c) character-traits and motives. These diverse contents, he says, "permit different emphases." But moral educators must certainly give attention to both the form and content of morality. Peters states a case for form and content. But a review of his writing suggests, perhaps, an inconsistent use of these very terms. He regards form and content as components of moral reasoning. Yet he also sees content as the various aspects of one's l i f e which can be affected by knowing the form of morality. He c r i t i c i z e s the developmentalists, Piaget and Kohlberg, for attending only to the form of morality ("how rules are conceived"). In his view, they attend only to moral reasoning (moral judgments), but not to the dispositions to act i n certain ways or the dispositions to feel certain things (RC42). Peters' recommendations to them appear to lead, however, i n two (different) directions: (1) he recommends that they give attention to moral content which turns out to be his notion of habituation to moral rules, and (2) he recommends they give attention to compassion and concern for others—those dispositions or attitudes which he believes must accompany or "supplement" the use of 54 reason. Let us look b r i e f l y at this second recommendation. D. Reason and 'Feeling' Peters' account of rational morality i s replete with 'feeling' terms; to 'compassion' and 'concern' he adds ' s e n s i t i v i t i e s , ' 'motives,' 'emotions,' 'dispositions' and 'rational passions.' If we are to be clear on Peters' understanding of reason i n morals, we must certainly examine his analyses of these feeling-terms. As I have said, Peters believes that compassion and concern for others are feelings that must supplement the use of reason. There can be over-emphasis on reason . . . we must have compassion and love as well as reason . . . these transform role-performances. (What we need is) . . . an account of Hume's sentiment for humanity. (RC26) Peters also speaks of reasoning as "having motives" or "being sensitive" to peoples' suffering. To reason in morals, he says, i s to have the motives of concern, compassion, benevolence, and to be moved to act i n certain ways. Principles can function as motives, he says; they can become "personalized" as motives. Do Peters' statements on compassion and concern as supplementary to reason, and his statements on reasons as motives reflect differing senses of what i t i s to reason on moral matters? Or does he believe that to reason well on moral mat-ters i s to show some compassion and concern for others? In this thesis, we shall have to c l a r i f y what Peters sees as the role of both motives and the emotions i n moral thinking and behaviour. He believes motives and emotions involve cognition: they are based on beliefs (RC81). But beliefs can be held on good evidence, on poor evidence or on no evidence at a l l . He uses the term 'appraisal' to refer to "what i s of value to the individual"; i t indicates a "moving away from or a moving toward." 'Appropriate appraisals' are those motives and emotions based on good evidence. Does he believe certain emotion/appraisals are required for taking the moral point of view? Does he allow or prohibit other emotion/ appraisals? With answers in hand, we may be able to see the merit of his suggestion that the emotions can be educated, and that the education of the emotions i s an important part of educating persons into rational morality. E. Moral Development and Moral Learning I have already indicated some of Peters' views about moral devel-opment and moral learning: the strong emphasis he places on training and instruction i n a child's habituation to moral rules ("the content of morality"), and the role he sees for teaching i n the child's learning of moral principles ("the form of morality"). I have also mentioned one criticism he brings against the developmental view of moral learning put forward by both Piaget and Kohlberg. Peters says that the notions of form and content present two puzzles for moral educators. One i s a 'paradoxical' notion: how can a rational morality emerge from a lowly level of habit-formation? He concludes that the paradox between reason and habit is resolved i f we notice that a 'habit' i s really an 'action' i n different disguise. The other puzzle i s whether different views about human learning (conditioning and instruction vs. experience and discovery) are recon-cilable. Here he concludes that at the early stages of learning, the notion of learning content i s compatible with the notion of conditioning. Learning the form of morality, however, is a different matter. Some types of teaching content might impede the child from developing to a stage at which different conceptions of rules are possible. Each of these puzzles and each of Peters' arguments w i l l be assessed in Chapters 3 and 4 . CHAPTER 3 The Form and Content of Moral Education Depth (of understanding i n morals) i s provided partly by the principles imman-ent i n the mode of experience and partly in the degree to which i t has been pos-sible to discern the one in the many in the content. (CP299) In this: chapter I discuss Peters' treatment of four concepts— 'form,' 'content,' 'principles,' and 'rules.' Part I consists of a comprehensive survey of Peters' ideas on the teaching and learning of moral principles and rules. Part II attends to his consideration of the concepts 'form' and 'content.' His account of teaching and learning principles and rules raises important conceptual issues. One issue i s the compatibility he sees between developing habits in children and developing their moral motives. Another issue, related to this, i s the distinction he makes between caring and reasoning. The habit/motive theme and the caring/ reasoning theme w i l l come under closer scrutiny i n the next chapter: Habits, Motives and Emotions. Here, I systematize his writing on moral principles and rules and offer c r i t i c a l comments. The task of systematization i t s e l f requires some analytical competence as Peters' suggestions are scattered through-out several sources and are often presented without careful attention to the language. 57 58 To set the tone for a consideration of Peters' account of prin-ciples, I discuss what some moral educators think are two!senses of 'having principles' or 'being principled': the so-called argument and disposition senses. Examining these senses helps us to see what simil-a r i t i e s and differences there may be between (a) a person's a b i l i t y to judge certain principles to be the right ones, and (b) a person's disposition to act as the principles prescribe: with fairness and con-cern for others. ~'T. Teaching' and Learning Principles and Rules - •'>- — • -A. Principles in Peters' Account of Morality 1. 'Having Principles': Arguing, and Acting on Principle Moral "educators occasionally distinguish two senses'of 'having principles' or 'acting on principle': the argument sense and the dis-position sense (Parkinson, 1974). And, as we saw in Chapter 2, Peters points to a 'difference between the " c l a r i f i c a t i o n of principles" and the "application of principles i n concrete circumstances." I shall argue, however, that the labels "argument/sense" and "disposition/sense" "do not reflect different^senses of"'having principles.' Rather, they emphasize important features of (or conditions for) 'having principles' or 'being principled.;' 'Having principle's'' (argume"nt~sense)' i s of tdn distinguished from 'having principles' (disposition sense) in the following way. The argument sense of 'having principles' refers to the principles or rules "a person invokes in argument "of public discussion where decisions are made about "what ought to be done." A person might argue in a seminar 5 9 or public forum, for example, that given the principle of respect for persons, we should make exceptions i n certain cases of rule-application: in those cases where acting on a rule would harm someone. The arguer might claim that we should make exceptions to the rule 'Do not l i e ' in cases where persons would be hurt i f the truth was told. "Adoption" of the principle of respect for persons would mean his choice of this prin-ciple as a standard for judging the proper application of a rule about lying. But his "adoption" of the principle would not necessarily imply that "the arguer" himself was 'moved' by the principle. To say that he chose or adopted the principle i n argument would not necessarily mean that he had or showed respect for persons. There might be a gap between what he said and what he did. In other cases, arguers might claim to be committed to equality and to the impartial consideration of interests, while their actions belied their words. Obviously, the intent of those who make the distinction between the argument and disposition senses i s to impress upon us the importance of attending to what a person does, not just to what he says. The assump-tion is that a person doesn't necessarily act morally i f he judges a certain action to be the right one. Seen i n this light, the argument sense of 'having principles' i s unattractive: 'reasoning' or 'judging' here suggests a verbal display, not genuine concern. Green ca l l s this the 'verbal sense' of following a rule (Green, 1967). The disposition sense of 'having principles,' by contrast, is more attractive. If a person "has principles" in this sense, he acts i n certain ways, i s sensitive to others' feelings, i s disposed to do or feel certain things as a result of judgments he makes. He may also 60 'have principles' i n the sense that he decides inwardly (or publicly) what he shall do. But while he may argue and may in so doing invoke principles to help him decide, he would not 'have principles' disposi-tionally unless he was moved to act in the ways the principles pre-scribed, that i s , with sensitivity and concern for other persons. Green cal l s this the 'active sense' of following a rule (Green, 1967). While i t is important to acknowledge the fact that persons often f a i l to act on what they consider (judge) to be right, an exclusive con-cern with the disposition "sense" of having principles may lead us to overlook the importance of arguing or judging or reasoning. In fact, both reasoning (arguing) on principle and acting i n accordance with principle are important features of 'having principles.' Let us see how this i s so. F i r s t , we cannot u n c r i t i c a l l y assume that those who "argue" using moral principles as "premises" of their arguments do not hold these principles dispositionally. In accepting the argument/disposition distinction, there i s an inclination, I suspect, to assume this. Quite common, and of concern to moral educators, are men and women who do not "invoke" any moral principle in their reasoning or arguments, and who display p a r t i a l i t y and lack of respect for each other. My own view is that those who adopt moral principles as part of their public or private rehearsal of reasons are l i k e l y to be those who "hold principles dispos-i t i o n a l l y . " This is an empirical, not a conceptual claim. These are persons who are l i k e l y to be sensitive to others' feelings, who know about what i t i s to interfere with others' rights, and who care about persons whose rights are interfered with. 61 It i s often d i f f i c u l t , of course, to verify whether persons have moral dispositions (principles) even when they publicly rehearse their reasons, but this i s probably less d i f f i c u l t than verifying whether persons who rehearse their reasons privately are those who are acting on principle. There i s , as well, a kind of "intermediate" case. A person might argue—that i s , he might supply material facts for a judg-ment—but he might argue " i n accordance with unformulated principles." He might not be able to say why certain facts are relevant facts, but he knows that they are. This person might 'have principles,' but he may be unable to express his principles either publicly or privately. Second, i f we say that 'having principles' means 'being disposed to act on principle,' we might forget that an agent's articulation or formu-lation of his reasons (principles) i s important, perhaps even necessary for deciding complex cases (Coombs, 1976, p. 18). We would most l i k e l y say that an agent 'had principles' when he made d i f f i c u l t decisions i f he could both articulate the reasons or principles why he thought some-thing ought or ought not to be done and i f he acted on those principles he thought were the right ones. Conversely, I do.not believe that we can correctly say of a person that he holds moral principle P unless we have evidence of his using moral principle P as a "premise" for his moral conclusions. If we do not have some evidence of this kind, we probably cannot make well-grounded claims that a person's "sensitivity to others' feelings," for example, i s evidence that this person holds the principle of respecting others' feelings. As we w i l l see i n section 3(a), Peters believes that a person i s 62 principled i f he acts on his principles: he does not pay much attention to the importance of developing persons' reasoning a b i l i t i e s , i f by that we mean the person's a b i l i t y to publicly articulate his reasons for act-ing. Nevertheless Peters thinks that the formulation of moral prin-ciples i s necessary—for a reason we w i l l now see. 2. Principle Formulation Those who draw the distinction between the argument and disposition senses, as well as those who don't, usually have some views about whether moral principles can be formulated or articulated or put into words. For the argument sense, principles must be the kinds of things which can be formulated, put into words, specified. On the other hand, when we speak of 'having principles dispositionally,' we are very often acknow-ledging the d i f f i c u l t y of e x p l i c i t l y formulating or articulating the complex principles and rules people "have" and act on. To say of a person that he acted on principle dispositionally, for example, presents the observer of that person with the challenge of putting into words what this person has done. If a person makes excep-tions to rules in the light of what the consequences would be to others, i t i s d i f f i c u l t for observers interpreting that behaviour to say what principles the person acted on (impartiality, freedom, respect for persons, consideration of their interest, etc.), whether he acted on specific rules, or perhaps some "combination" of rules and principles. Moreover, i n those cases where a person f a i l e d to act in. a particular manner, i t i s enormously d i f f i c u l t to t e l l what his principles are. His failure to act may have been due to self-deception, weakness of the w i l l , or other social pressures. From the point of view of judging our own or others' behaviour, i t is d i f f i c u l t to say what principles and rules we act on: "our principles" are not easy to formulate. Nevertheless, we do exhort others to abide by certain rules and principles. Peters himself says that "the formulation (of principles) is necessary i f one intends to embark on (the task) of ju s t i f y i n g prin-ciples" (CP286). When principles are thought of as guides to action, then, and when they are " j u s t i f i e d " as guides to action, we try to formulate or articulate them i n some way, even i f we cannot do this with precision (Hirst, 1974, p. 60). From this second perspective of principles as guides to action, I now formulate the principles Peters defends as moral ones. 3. Peters' Principles In this section, I attend f i r s t to Peters' comments on the notion of a 'principle.' Second, I mention his method of j u s t i f i c a t i o n . Third, I relate his comments on the five principles of morality (equal-i t y , consideration of interests, respect for persons, tru t h - t e l l i n g and freedom) to see what directives he says they give us. (a) His notion of 'principle' Peters says that a 'principle' i s a consideration "to which we appeal when we c r i t i c i z e , j u s t i f y or explain" a course of action (RC59), or to which we appeal i n contexts of moral uncertainty (MD315). The fundamental principles of fairness, truth-telling, freedom and respect for persons are articulations of ultimate values (RC114). Our moral principles, he says, "are those which are fundamental or overriding" (RH269). Principles are abstract considerations, he says, but they 64 "enter our lives i n concrete, specific ways" (MD315). Principles "determine the relevance of reasons" in deciding what we ought to do (RC71). Principles cannot prescribe precisely what we ought to do, but at least they rule out certain courses of action and sensitize us to the features of a situation which are morally relevant. They function more as "signposts" than as "guidebooks" (CP285). He sees some difference between principles and rules. Principles, he says, "support" or "back" rules. They " j u s t i f y " more specific rules or courses of action (MD312). Rules are specific i n what they pick out to do; principles on the other.hand are more general (MD315; DB192). Principles are of a 'higher-order' than rules; they are formal in char-acter. They enable a person "to apply rules i n t e l l i g e n t l y , and to revise . . . the substantial content of rules at a lower l e v e l " (RH269). Peters' views on the differences between principles and rules are similar i n some respects to the view of Marcus Singer (Singer, 1967, p. 160ff.). Singer sees moral principles as more general, pervasive and fundamental than moral rules. Principles, he says, underlie certain rules, determine their scope and j u s t i f y exceptions to rules. On the other hand Singer claims that principles hold i n a l l circumstances, with no exceptions. Peters, by contrast, does not regard principles as exceptionless. In Peters' view, a person who has principles may or may not be able to formulate these principles e x p l i c i t l y (CP286). But a person's acceptance of a principle is reflected i n what he does. In coming to have principles, one acquires the a b i l i t y to see connections between many rules and their effects on other people (MD326). Principles sensitize one to considerations such as others' suffering. Having prin-ciples means caring about the consequences of one's actions (RC50,59,99; CP286). Principles are not "affectively neutral"; they are "apprai-sals" (CP286). (b) His method of just i f y i n g principles Peters employs what he cal l s a "transcendental argument" or "transcendental deduction" to j u s t i f y his five principles. He calls this method a "Kantian reconstruction" (EE114). Many writers have c r i t i c i z e d Peters for his use of this j u s t i f i c a t i o n method, but I w i l l not examine this literature here.* In commenting later on each of the principles, I do point to some d i f f i c u l t i e s with Peters' method of principle-justification. And those d i f f i c u l t i e s surface again when I discuss Peters' sense of the term "formal" i n Part II of this chapter. A l l five principles, he says, are presuppositions of asking the question "What ought I to do?" or "What are there reasons for doing?" These principles are necessary i f a form of discourse i s "to have mean-ing, to be applied or to have point" (EE115). Although individuals may have a l l sorts of private purposes i n using the form of discourse called moral discourse, "they must have some kind of commitment to i t s point" (DB188). Without these presuppositions, he says, "the use of reason (is) mere shadow-play," "reason lacks point" (RC12), reasoning about "personal conduct or social practices would never get properly off the ground" (RC22). This form of the j u s t i f i c a t i o n of principles "consists in probing behind (the forms of discourse) in order to make *See Kleinig (1973) and Downie and Telfer (1969) who present two of the many criticisms of Peters' method of just i f y i n g principles. 66 explicit what they i m p l i c i t l y presuppose . . . i t may be the only form of argument by means of which more general moral principles can be shown to be well-grounded" (EE114). Peters doesn't argue these points. And there i s , in fact, a certain implausibility about his assertions, both for the general form of reasoning and for moral reasoning i n particular. But l e t us see now what he says about each of the principles, (c) The five principles (i) Equality, Impartiality, Justice The principle of 'No distinctions without relevant differences,' writes Peters, is "central to a l l forms of reasoning" (RC77). In ethics we c a l l this the principle of equality, impartiality or justice. The minimal form of the impartiality, equality or justice principles i s a highly general prescription: we should not make distinctions between cases unless there are relevant grounds for doing so (DB192). This rule or principle provides "a criteri o n of relevance for justifying particular rules and for making exceptions i n particular cases" (RH269). Peters calls this principle "the principle of principles" (PK152). - In i t s "more full-blooded form," the equality principle says that we must regard other peoples' claims and interests impartially with our own. "We must settle issues on relevant grounds: we must ban arbi-trariness. .(The principle) cannot be employed unless something of value i s at stake. We must have other c r i t e r i a of value in order to determine relevance" (PK152). He provides examples of what he takes to be irrelevant considerations: "people cannot be ignored because of the colour of their eyes, or ruled out of court because of the colour of their skin" (MD364; FC145; SP35). When we talk about what i s just or unjust, he says, we are appeal-ing to this formal principle of reason. This applies to "questions of distribution when we are concerned about treatments different people are to receive, or to commutative situations when we are concerned not with comparisons but with questions of desert, as i n punishment." In a l l cases l i k e this, "some cri t e r i o n has to be produced by reference to which the treatment i s to be based on relevant considerations. There must be some evaluative premises (which) determine relevance" (MD331; PK152). Peters considers the principles of consideration of interests and impartiality (equality; justice) to be the most important higher-order principles (PC253). Consideration of interests, he says, provides a "criterion of relevance" for the equality principle (PK152). Peters' analysis of the principle of equality i s not original. As well, current writers express similar views. Komisar and Coombs (1964) argue that a commitment to the equality principle reflects com-mitments of two sorts: a commitment to reason, and a "prior ethical commitment" about which they do not comment further. Williams (1969) explicates the "moral" commitment he thinks i s implied by a normative principle of equality: he c a l l s this a moral sense of "personhood."* ( i i ) Consideration of Interests The principle of consideration of interests, Peters ..asserts, " i s very close in i t s general meaning to the characterization of the form *See my paper (Bruneau, 1978) for a discussion of the equality principle and the concept of a person. of (moral) discourse i t s e l f as one in which reasons are sought for doing this rather than that" (DB188).* In the sphere of social practices i n which debates are largely about conflicting interests, "there must be assent to the principle that peoples' interests should be considered, for the use of reasons lacks point unless i t i s accepted that i t matters whether people suffer or satisfy their wants" (RC12; PK152). Peters admits that neither concern for others nor concern for oneself can be demonstrated as necessary for the application of reasoning to inter-personal conduct. Nevertheless he assumes them to be "preconditions" in his system of rational morality (ML364). Peters makes' some attempt to specify whose interests are to be considered. "We must assume that those with a capacity for reasoning (will have) a concern for the interests of others as well as for their own interests. For those who reason there must be some concern to ameliorate the human predicament, to consider people's interests" (ML364; i t a l i c s mine). What kind of discussion would i t be, he queries, " i f there was deliberation about what ought to be done with no concern for the interests of those who might contribute and who might be affected?" (FC144). The principle of the consideration of interests, he remarks, .is appealed to in criticism or j u s t i f i c a t i o n of social practices l i k e punishment (RC60) and abortion (ML377). (This principle) "acts also as an ever present corrective to, and possible ground of cr i t i c i s m of rules (when they) c o n f l i c t " (CP291). The principle "can be regarded *See (Baier, 1967) for a c r i t i c a l comment on Peters' method of justifying the principle of Consideration of Interests. as a telos immanent in roles and social practices" (RC60; ML377). "The experience of a society with regard to the tendencies of actions i n relation to peoples' interests l i e s behind i t s roles and general duties — t h e role of parent largely defines what this principle means in deal-ings with children" (RC60). We also understand this principle, Peters says, "by the specific duties constitutive of the roles of teacher and ci t i z e n and by the more general rules that are internalized i n the form of punctuality, tidiness and t h r i f t i n e s s " (MD315; LE90). Peters admits that there i s vast disagreement on the content to be given this principle. What, we ask, i s a man's interest? Purporting to answer this question, he suggests that we select those things which are i n a person's interest. F i r s t , "there are certain general conditions which i t i s i n any man's interest to preserve however idiosyncratic his view of what are his interests. These general conditions include not only the avoidance of pain and injury but also the minimal rules for l i v i n g together" (CP285). But "above the level of physical and mental health what i s to count? Surely not just what he thinks his interest to be?" (CP299). He suggests that-we "try to understand various forms of worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s and personal ideals, not only i n general but i n relation to the capacity of particular individuals" (CP299; EE176ff.). Moral education, Peters suggests, should be as much concerned "with the promotion of good a c t i v i t i e s as i t w i l l be with the mainten-ance of rules of social conduct—with what ought to be as well as with what men ought to do." The pursuit of truth, the creation of beauty, the enjoyment of sensitive personal relationships are constituents, he 70 says, of the " c i v i l i z e d l i f e " (CP270). Peters' interpretation of this principle raises some puzzling ques-tions.* F i r s t , i t i s not clear how he distinguishes this principle from the equality principle which states than an agent, to be rational, must consider another's interests impartially with his own. Second, Peters' choice of things " i n a person's interest" are not well-defended; in particular he i s not clear about how these choices are "presupposed" by rational thought or are "preconditions" of his system of morality. Third, by interpreting the principle of consideration of interests i n so many different ways, as rules, roles, worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s and non-injury, Peters' formulations of the principle provide no clear "signpost" indicating what we should not do: i t would often be d i f f i c u l t , even impossible, to decide which actions were in violation of this principle, ( i i i ) Respect for Persons An agent might be committed to equality and to the consideration of interests, says Peters, but he might not regard other persons with respect (EE142; EE210). To be rational, an agent must have respect for persons. This norm i s "presupposed by those entering seriously into discussion" (EE214). I state, f i r s t , some general comments Peters makes on this prin-ciple. I summarize next his negative and positive formulations of respect for persons. Finally, I mention those places where he speaks of 'respect' as a sensitivity or feeling. Iii c a lling respect for persons a principle, he says, "we mean that *See my paper (Bruneau, 1977) which presents some criticisms of Peters' consideration of interests principle. i t embodies a consideration to which appeal i s made when c r i t i c i z i n g , j ustifying or explaining some determinate content of behaviour or belief" (RC59). Seeing the v a l i d i t y of rules i s dependent upon reasons made relevant by this principle (RC99). In a rather ambiguous move, Peters says that this principle i s only i n t e l l i g i b l e " i n contexts of l i f e where persons occupy roles" (RC59; ML377). And he says as well that the principle of respect for persons acts as a corrective to formal-ized dealings between men (CP293). At many points, Peters defines a principle of respect for persons in negative terms. We are not to think of or treat others, as the mere occupants of roles (RC13,30,59; PUA11; ML377), as means to the purposes of others (RC59; ML377), as beings open to exploitation (RC30), as persons judged only for their competence i n a c t i v i t i e s (RC59; ML377), only as beings who are alive, or who feel pain, or who are centers of wants and expectations (LE90). If we have respect for persons, we w i l l view and treat others as distinctive centers of consciousness (EI101; EE59), as rule-makers (DR132), as beings with life-spaces and points of view of their own (RC13), as possessors of rational capacities (RC30), as centers of eval-uation and choice (RC30), as sources of argument (SP35), as centers of intentions and decisions (LE90), as determiners of their own destinies (RC30), as persons who have pride in their achievements (EI101; EE59), as ones who, like ourselves, have points of view worth considering—who may have a glimmering of the truth which has eluded us (RC79; EI101), as beings who have rights (LE90), as persons who have human characteristics that animals do not share . . . assertive points of view (LE90; EE210), 72 as persons with aspirations, a b i l i t i e s and inclinations that are peculiar to them (EE55). There i s something about other persons, Peters intones, "which matters supremely" (CP298). Having respect for persons, he continues, i s not just knowing these things about other persons, i t i s caring as well (EE59). He c a l l s such respect an "emotion" (RC26), a "feeling" (EE208), a "rational passion" (RC98), an "attitude affectively tinged" (RC30), an "attitude under-written by a reasonably distinctive set of appraisals"(EE223), an attitude directed toward individuals which i s "essential to the stress on reason" (EE208,213; RC30). Such a principle sensitizes an individual "to the way i n which he should conduct himself in various areas of the moral l i f e which constitute i t s content" (RC59). Sporadic sympathy for others, Peters says, must develop into the rational passion, we c a l l respect for persons (DR135,140; LE39). Peters also believes that respect for persons i s possible only "as one becomes sensitive and sympathetic to others' sufferings" (DR139). While Peters sees 'respect for persons' both as an attitude one takes towards others' rational natures and as the recognition that others have rights, he suggests that the notion that others have rights i s somehow lo g i c a l l y dependent upon the fact that they are. rational. 'Being rational' for him means being able to choose and enter into rational discussion. Viewing others as rational in this sense is, con-sistent with viewing others as beings who have action-rights. That i s , to recognize that persons have action-rights i s to be committed in some sense to a principle of non-interference with persons' rights to do what  they choose to do. 73 Peters' exclusive emphasis on this kind of right, however, ignores those cases where beings (e.g., the feeble-minded and children) may have rights to have things done for them. These are cases where we would l i k e l y say that persons are not rational, or are not yet rational, and where someone (or some group of persons, for example, the government) would be responsible for making provisions for the satisfaction of the rights of these beings. In any case, Peters does not clearly state his principle of respect for persons; nor does he attend to the different kinds of rights, i n terms of which moral agents would "have" respect for persons, (iv) Truth-telling Peters thinks that an important mark of the educated person and of the morally educated person i s a "passionate concern for the truth"; this theme pervades his writing. Yet he devotes l i t t l e attention to making clear a principle of truth-telling. At times he interprets "tr u t h - t e l l i n g " as a concern for truth; at other times as an injunction to t e l l the truth. Peters states that truth-telling i s , l i k e the other principles, a presupposition of "being reasonable" (RC22; DB188; EE115). He is less certain whether a principle of truth-telling always helps us to decide what to do: "the fundamental p r i n c i p l e s — i m p a r t i a l i t y , consideration of interests, freedom, respect for persons and probably truth-telling lay down general guidance about the ways in which we should go about deciding matters" (CP286; i t a l i c s mine). Peters believes that in seriously asking the question "Why do this rather than that?" a person signifies his desire to acquaint himself with the situation out of which the question arises: he must already have a serious concern for truth built into his consciousness. In his criticisms of Kohlberg's theory of moral development, Peters wonders why Kohlberg sees only the principle of justice as an ultimate principle of morality: Why (does he) not include truth-telling? For Peter Winch has argued that this principle i s a presupposition of human com-munication. This may be too strong a thesis actually; but a good case can be made out for i t as a presupposition of the descriptive, explanatory, and argumentative uses of language, which would include moral reasoning. (PK155) In speaking about the five principles as presuppositions of rational thought, however, Peters twice mentions a presumption of truth-telling. People should t e l l the truth, he in s i s t s , or rational discussion would be impossible. As a general practice, "systematic lying would be counter-productive to any common concern to discover what ought to be done" (ML364; FC144). He also says "white l i e s " may be told i f t e l l i n g the truth would cause great suffering. Fundamental principles li k e truth-telling have to be bent a b i t . They do not provide specific edicts, only considera-tions that make reasons relevant. As guides to conduct, "(principles) are always to be asserted with an 'other things being equal' proviso. In cases lik e those of white l i e s , other things are not equal because another fundamental principle i s involved, for example, that of causing harm to others" (FC148). Some comments on his views are in order. Peters may be correct to speak of truth-telling as a presupposition of the agent's rational thought. A concern for truth may be "required" or "presupposed" by seriously asking oneself what reasons there are for doing things. In asking others about his own practical conduct, the agent assumes that he w i l l get the truth from them. If others systematically l i e d to him the agent would be thwarted in his attempt to get a "serious" reply to his "serious" question. Rational discussion would probably also be impos-sible i f the agent systematically l i e d to others: their decisions about doing what was best for themselves would be impeded. Peters' account of truth-telling raises a problem. How does he move from the claim that a concern for truth i s a rational principle, to his claim that i t i s a moral principle: one which ought to guide the agent's interpersonal conduct? Just because the agent may himself have a concern for truth presupposed by his asking practical questions does not require him to t e l l others the truth (not l i e to them). (v) Freedom The principle of freedom i s the last of Peters' "presuppositions of being reasonable." This principle, he believes, i s directly and logic-a l l y related to rational thought and action. If a man is to be free, he must be educated to become a "chooser"—a person who sees that he has a range of options before him, and whose choice of options can be made on good grounds, rationally (CP297). To make persons free, educators should i n i t i a t e educands into a wide variety of worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s . Choosers should have breadth of understanding, Peters asserts; this gives "concrete backing to the ideal of freedom" (CP292,289). From his assumption that the principle of freedom i s a principle of rational choice, Peters argues that i t i s a principle which also guides interpersonal conduct. 76 Peters begins by noting what typically takes place i n public dis-cussion or private deliberation. An agent asks others or asks himself what reasons there are for doing things. The serious asking of this question implies that the agent w i l l make a choice from among possible ones. The questioning also implies that the agent wants to base his choice on relevant grounds; he i s looking for reasons i n support of one option over another. According to Peters, the agent would not seriously ask himself the question "What are there reasons for doing?" unless he also expected to act on the decisions or choices he came to (DB188).* There i s a presumption, but not a right, favouring the agent's freedom to act on decisions, choices the agent makes (FC148; ML364) . With this^ presumption of freedom, the agent can demand non-interference from others so that he might do what he wants. He can demand to be allowed to do what there are reasons for doing (EE180). "Otherwise his deliberation about alternatives would have no point . . . i t would be l i k e a rehearsal without a play to follow" (EE182). The agent's demand for his own freedom (non-interference from others) i s subject to a "other things being equal" clause. The presump-tion of freedom (or, as he cal l s i t "a prima facie right to non-conform-i t y " (FC147) holds, he says, provided the action i s not one which causes harm to another human being. If the agent's exercise of freedom i s l i k e l y to occasion great unfairness or suffering to others, this consti-tutes sufficient ground for interfering i n the agent's freedom. Interference would be j u s t i f i e d only under these conditions. Peters *J. McClellan expresses similar views i n his reply to Coombs (1976) readily acknowledges his debt to J. S. M i l l , "who argued that the sole warrant for interfering with people's liberty was i f i t s exercise involved manifest harm to others" (EE180). Peters also believes that the agent must presume others' freedom. He reaches this conclusion v ia an intermediary premise: the agent must presume others' freedom of speech. Agents must allow others to speak their point of view, that i s , engage similarly in rational discussion. The presumption i n favour of freedom of speech, he says, "derives from the situation of practical reason." The agent "must obviously demand absence of interference from others." His deliberation " i s not . . . something that grows out of his head l i k e a plant from a bulb." It mirrors a social situation into which the agent has been i n i t i a t e d , where alternative courses of action are suggested and discussed. "In such deliberations, assessments such as 'wise' and 'foolish' are applied to suggestions in the light of public c r i t e r i a which are b u i l t into the form of discourse" (EE180). On grounds of prudence, Peters argues, the agent would be "very foolish to shut himself off from other rational beings who also have views about what there are reasons for doing. He would be foolish to impose constraints on others so as to prevent them from giving him advice." He concludes, then, that freedom of expression of other ra-tional beings must be demanded by any rational agent for "he would be stupid i f he deprived himself of access to considerations which others might offer." (The conditions of argument) "include l e t t i n g any rational being contribute to a public discussion." The agent, therefore must demand freedom (of speech) for others for "how can (the agent) engage in such discussions with other rational beings and yet deny to them what he must rationally demand for himself?" Without freedom of speech, he says, "the community would be hamstrung i n relation to i t s concern to arrive at an answer; for even the most offensive or simple members might have something of importance to contribute" (FC144). He says that the presumption favouring the principle of freedom • "i n the sphere of opinions" has to be j u s t i f i e d " i n the sphere of actions" as well. This, he says, " i s not very d i f f i c u l t to do," but i t presupposes "a close link between discussion and action." The agent must place a great deal of importance upon the contributions beings make to a rational discussion. To be rational, the agent must treat'others as rational beings, that i s , he must not interfere with their actions. In his treatment of this principle, Peters seems to confuse the point of deliberating about a matter with the point of morality. Other than to say that rational agents ought not to interfere with others' freedom unless these others are themselves causing harm, Peters never states a moral principle of freedom. He gives no further indication of those circumstances in which i t i s permissible to interfere in another's freedom, nor any indication of those circumstances in which i t is morally required or morally prohibited to interfere with others' l i b e r t i e s . If he had explicated the phrase "unless these others are harming others," we would have a clearer indication of what he thinks is a moral principle of freedom. 79 4. Conflicts of Principle Peters i s aware that the fundamental principles may sometimes con-f l i c t . He provides three examples of conflict of principles. Argu-ments deriving from the consideration of interests "sometimes clash with those deriving from respect for persons" (EE128). The principle of truth-telling and the principle of freedom may conflict with what are i n persons' interests (FC148). Determining what i s a "just wage,", he says, i l l u s t r a t e s the clash of principles. "It is usually granted that there sh a l l be different categories. . . . What c r i t e r i a should determine the level of wages? (Considerations of) merit . . . or need . . . or the value of work done to the community . . . and i f these . . . what relative weights to each?" (EE128). His advice for resolving conflicts of principles, however, contains few leads. There is no rule, he says, "for determining which reasons are most relevant when the reasons f a l l under different fundamental prin-ciples which conflict in a particular case. Judgment is required, not a slide-rule" (EE128; CP284). Moreover, Peters does not t e l l us how one j u s t i f i e s a decision made when two principles c o n f l i c t . Peters' failure to discuss in any d e t a i l the resolution of con-f l i c t s of principle is a serious weakness in his account. As we w i l l see in the next section, Peters expects that agents w i l l resolve con-f l i c t s of rule by recourse to moral principles. But he seems not to have noticed that he has presented five principles which do not a l l recommend the same thing. To say as he does that the moral agent must simply use his 'judgment' to resolve principle conflicts is not 80 particularly enlightening. The moral agent must surely be able to use some c r i t e r i a to decide whether to r e s t r i c t a person's freedom, for example, in order to act on what i s i n that person's interests. B. Rules in Peters' Account of Morality Peters divides moral rules into two categories: basic social rules and l o c a l , relative rules. Some of the basic social rules, he says, may be "personalized" as character-traits: unselfishness, fairness and honesty. These character-traits, he believes, d i f f e r from those which affect the "manner" in which rules are followed (see Chapter 5). In the present section, I give examples of his two main rule-categories, and indicate some problems with his conception of moral rules. Follow-ing this, I sort out his views on the teaching and learning of rules, and the teaching and learning of principles. 1. Basic Social Rules There are some basic social rules, Peters says, which every person must learn as part of his moral education. These include rules concern-ing contracts, non-injury to others, care of the young, and care of property (RC13; FC145; CP285; RH269; PC254; PK156; EE202). Singer calls these "fundamental" moral rules (Singer, op_. c i t . , p. 176). To this l i s t of basic rules, Peters adds others: 'veracity' (PC254), 'not stealing,' 'punctuality' and 'honesty' (CP297). 'Verac-i t y ' and 'honesty' are rules which are "personalized" and 'not stealing,' presumably, i s a rule about the care of property. It i s less clear where 'punctuality' belongs (see Ch. 4). Peters regards 'promising' as a contract rule (FC153). As well, he mentions "basic rules regu-. lating reproduction" but takes this no further (EE174). 81 The basic rules, he proclaims, "can be straightforwardly j u s t i f i e d by appeal to principles" (PK156). These rules are so important "that they could be regarded almost as definitions of society" (RH269; PC254). A rational man can see that these rules "are necessary to any continuing form of social l i f e , man being what he is and the conditions of l i f e on earth being what they are" (RC13; EE174). They are binding "on anyone who is deemed to be a member of the same society" (RH269). Peters speaks of an agreement about, acceptance of, and a consensus concerning these general social rules. But he vacillates on the ques-tion of what i t i s to accept them, and who i s to accept these rules. As in science where there i s a f a i r degree of consensus at a low level of laws, "so i n the moral case there are basic rules. The individual must accept the general rules of a society" (CP292; FC146). A society, he says, is a collection of individuals "united by the acceptance of certain rules" (RH269). These individuals must agree "about a level of basic rules which provide conditions necessary for anyone to pursue his inter-ests" (CP297). It is absolutely essential, he says, that in the area of basic rules "there should be a high degree of conformity, whether people conform on principled grounds or whether their conformity i s of the con-ventional type" (PK156). He speaks also of "determining" what are basic rules. At the level of basic rules, "we may seek ways of l i v i n g which (are) improvements on those we have inherited. (We have recourse to procedural principles) . . . which at least rule out certain courses of action" (CP285). But, he adds, " i t would be d i f f i c u l t to conceive of any social, economic, or geographical changes which would lead one to think that such basic rules 82 should be abrogated, though, of course,' exception could be made to them under special circumstances" (RH269). Peters i s correct to say that these rules are i n some sense neces-sary to social l i f e and that they have some kind of binding quality. But his comments present a host of problems. Especially arguable i s his claim that basic rules are binding on anyone deemed a member of the same society. My understanding of moral rules i s that they have a "universal character." They apply to a l l persons at a l l times. They are not dependent on the notion "members of the same society." There i s something odd about Peters notion'of an agreement, acceptance of or consensus concerning the basic moral rules. Again, I understand moral rules to hold whether or not members of the society consider them to hold. As well, moral rules "exist" whether or not they appear to be " i n force." Peters' notion that members of a society agree or accept or reach a consensus about basic rules i s therefore odd and probably wrong. So also i s his suggestion that members of the society can determine what are the basic rules, i f "determine" means to formulate or change basic rules. . He i s confused about whether basic rules are rules a society does agree on, or whether they are rules a society ought to agree on i f i t i s moral and rational, i . e . , i f i t accepts the fundamental principles. Part of the d i f f i c u l t y i n evaluating Peters arises from the fact that he does not l i s t or spell out what he thinks are basic social rules; he mentions ; only a few general categories. Peters j u s t i f i e s the rules by reference to the "procedural" 83 (fundamental) p r i n c i p l e s of m o r a l i t y and "the requirements of s o c i a l l i v i n g . " There i s no unanimity of o p i n i o n , however, about how b a s i c r u l e s are to be j u s t i f i e d . G e r t , f o r example, b e l i e v e s moral r u l e s are j u s t i f i e d by reference to what " a l l r a t i o n a l men would advocate: the a t t i t u d e r a t i o n a l men would take towards v i o l a t i o n o f the r u l e s " (Ger t , 1966, p . 7 6 f f ) . One obeys the moral r u l e s , on h i s account , because i t i s r a t i o n a l to do so and i r r a t i o n a l o therwise . 2. L o c a l or R e l a t i v e Rules Peters d i s t i n g u i s h e s b a s i c r u l e s from l o c a l ( r e l a t i v e ) r u l e s . These l a t t e r r u l e s "depend upon p a r t i c u l a r c ircumstances—upon c o n t i n -gent fac t s about s o c i a l , economic and geograph ica l c o n d i t i o n s " (RH269). R e l a t i v e r u l e s , he says , are "more c o n t r o v e r s i a l " than b a s i c r u l e s (PK156). They can be r e v i s e d ; they permit of "change and experiment," which b a s i c r u l e s do not (FC145). There i s some a f f i n i t y between P e t e r s ' category of l o c a l r u l e s and S i n g e r ' s category of l o c a l r u l e s . S inger says l o c a l r u l e s r e f e r to s o c i a l needs and purposes and d e r i v e from l o c a l c o n d i t i o n s i n terms of which they may be j u s t i f i e d . For S i n g e r , l o c a l r u l e s i n c l u d e t r a d i t i o n s , customs and the e t h i c a l codes of d i f f e r e n t p r o f e s s i o n s (S inger , op_. c i t . , p . 179). Peters gives only a few examples of l o c a l , r e l a t i v e r u l e s and con-ducts no a n a l y s i s of them. His l o c a l r u l e s are l e s s l i k e r u l e s than they are l i k e i ssues persons must come to d e c i s i o n s about: p r o h i b i t i o n s on usury , b i r t h - c o n t r o l and possess iveness (FC145), p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n trade unions (PK156), the r u l e that one should be spar ing i n the use of water , a r u l e de fens ib le only i n times of drought (RH269), and r u l e s 84 about gambling and smoking. Peters admits that i t i s not easy to ascertain which rules f i t into which category. Rules about sexual behaviour, he suggests, are not easily categorized. But the d i f f i c u l t y of categorizing rules, he says, does not affect the general usefulness of the distinction. In a rational code, "there (are) procedural rules (fundamental principles) which could be regarded as presupposed by the very a c t i v i t y of giving reasons for rules, basic rules which could be j u s t i f i e d under any con-ceivable conditions, and the more relative rules" (RH269). These sorts of distinctions, are very relevant when one i s confronted by the confident assertion that a l l moral matters are relative or expressions of private preference. Those who proclaim this usually point to disagreements over sexual morality, punishment or the war i n Vietnam. But this i s merely to make the point that the content of morality i s not uniformly acceptable. Of course i t i s not; neither i s the content of science. (FC145) 3. Conflicts of Rule Peters gives Virtually no attention to "conflicts of rule." Conflicts between rules and conflicts between rules and roles, he says, can be resolved i f persons become sensitized to the procedural rules (principles) of morality. "The principle that one should consider peoples' interests acts an ever-present corrective to, and possible ground of cr i t i c i s m of, rules and social practices which can be appealed to when rules c o n f l i c t " (CP291). As we have seen, however, Peters interprets the principle of Con-sideration of Interests i n many different ways; i t i s unclear how this principle i s to be a "corrective to" or "ground of cr i t i c i s m for" con-f l i c t s of rule. Moreover, Peters does not say why he chose this principle over others for the resolution of rule-conflicts. C. Teaching and Learning Principles and Rules 1. Teaching and Learning Rules (a) Introduction An especially important task of moral education, Peters claims, i s the "passing on of procedural rules and basic rules." He c a l l s these rules "minimum equipment" without which an individual "cannot rationally make exceptions to basic rules or take decisions about rules of a more relative status" (RH269; EE314). How are these rules passed on? We might anticipate Peters' pro-cess of "passing on" consists of some teaching procedures: "there must be some kind of teaching of rules for moral education to get started at a l l " (MD325). What kind of a c t i v i t i e s does he allow as teaching activ-i t i e s ? What other processes should accompany teaching? This section includes those passages where his use of the term 'content' refers only to 'rules.' (b) Teaching and learning moral rules To learn a moral rule, Peters believes, i s not to learn the rule "as a bit of verbalism . . . without understanding of i t s application." Learning a rule means "being able to apply i t i n a variety of situations, that i s , attending to the situations and to the sim i l a r i t i e s in them picked out by the rule." It also means "attending to what (specific) actions are l i k e l y to bring about." Learning a moral rule, he says, "presupposes understanding of a complicated network of concepts" (RC63). The learner's understanding of moral rules and related concepts, he says, i s not achieved by t r i a l and error. It must be brought about by "teaching, instruction and explanation" (RC66). The content "has to 86 be exhibited, explained or marked out i n some way which i s i n t r i n s i c a l l y rather than extrinsically related to i t . This i s a central feature of any process that can be called a process of teaching" (MD325; LE29; MD310). Peters uses the term "induction" to refer to the process of explain-ing a rule i n the context to which i t applies—pointing to the consequen-ces of acting on a rule (RC66,71; ML381; PK156). Interestingly, he avoids the word "teaching." Induction, he says, can only be effective "when a child reaches the appropriate level of cognitive development." Only when a child i s capable of. r e v e r s i b i l i t y of thought and- can look at actions from the point of view of others,'"(is) this technique effective" (RC66). To foster this cognitive development, "rational techniques such as persuasion, discussion, encouraging children to take part in 'practical situations' . . . in games and in dramatic productions . . . stimulates their development and encourages (them) to see the other person's point of view" (FC153). Peters i s careful to point out that learning a moral rule is not just understanding the rule and the situations to which i t is approp-riately applied. Nor i s learning a rule a "theoretical grasp of the conductiveness of such rules to the general good" (CP297). Even i f a person sees the reasons behind rules, and even i f he sees what i s another person's point of view, the job of morally educating him i s only half done. He must also learn how to behave consistently i n the required way. That is why the notions 'conditioning' and 'reinforcement' are important, Peters avers, "for what we are concerned with here is habit-87 training." Habit-training must precede "more rational techniques" (FC153). Peters in s i s t s that behaviouristic techniques are a necessary means for getting children to behave consistently i n the required way. There i s no other way that a rule i s meaningful to a small child as a guide to conduct except as i t i s linked with approval and dis-approval , reward or punishment. . . . There would be no point i n general i n having such rules, unless they regulated wayward i n c l i n -ations, so conformity usually demands the presence of some counter-inclinations such as the desire for approval or reward, as the child cannot see their point deriving from principles. (PK156; RC71) As might be expected, Teters stresses the limitations of this -approach. "A person could not learn to behave morally purely by some process of conditioning i n a s t r i c t sense . . . because in learning a rule, he has to develop . . . concepts" (RC62). "Moral education is inconceivable without some process of teaching, whatever additional help i s provided by various processes of habituation" (MD325). Peters concludes" that a" combination of introduction and reinforce-ment (conditioning) i s required for moral-learning (RC71; ML381). Both must be done in a way which does not stunt children's capacity to develop ari autonomous attitude to rules (FC153). Learning the 'form' of moral-i t y , he says, must not be impeded. 2. Teaching and Learning Principles Peters speaks of the teaching and learning of principles as the teaching and learning of the 'form' of morality. Peters writes in two ways about the learning of form. One ques-tion we should ask about his work i s whether he has two different con-ceptions of 'form,' or whether he believes there are two ways, perhaps. 88; complementary, of learning form. (a) The logi c a l prerequisite of learning form To begin, Peters insists that learning content i s a logi c a l pre-requisite to learning form. He explicates the connections between learning form and learning content i n what appear to be two different ways. He says, f i r s t , that learning content i s a lo g i c a l prerequisite to learning form since learning to follow a rule i s necessary before one can reflect on that rule. It i s very important that the child should firmly internalize a - set of rules so that they know what i t i s to act on a rule in a - -non-egocentric fashion. Unless they do this , they have not the necessary basis to reflect or reject those which they deem j u s t i -fiable or non-justifiable. (PK155; ML377) Children learn to follow rules autonomously "by generalizing their exper-ience of picking up some particular 'bag of virtues'" (RC59). Second, Peters asserts that learning content i s a l o g i c a l pre-requisite to learning form since" we cannot apply principles to concrete circumstances unless we have been introduced to some "determinate con-tent": Content v i t a l l y affects the application of principles both in the lives of societies and individuals. What counts as wel-fare, for instance, depends very much on current social prac-tices and individual needs (a normative notion). The appli-cation of justice depends on whether need i s thought more important than desert. And so on. There is no slide-rule for applying abstract principles to concrete situations. How they are applied, which i s often highly controversial, depends upon judgment and what Kohlberg c a l l s the 'content' of morality in a given society. And unless there were a determinate con-tent principles would have no function; for they are what we appeal to when we c r i t i c i z e or j u s t i f y some lower-level form of conduct. (PK155; ML378) 89 His analysis of the learning of content, summarized i n section 1, appears to coincide with these statements. Recall that he emphasizes two necessary features of learning content: (1) becoming habituated to moral rules (behaving consistently i n the required way), and (2) learning the concepts peculiar to the moral rules. For (1) he believes that the methods of conditioning are essential; for (2) he believes the methods of teaching are essential. Peters' statements on habituation to moral rules (behaving consis- < tently) coincide with his statement supra about learning content as a logical requirement for learning form: he emphasizes the "internaliza-tion" of sets of rules, "following rules," "knowing what i t i s to act on a rule." These are logical prerequisites, he says, to rational reflec-tion on a rule. Similarly, his statements on learning the concepts peculiar to the moral rules coincide with his statements that one cannot "apply prin-ciples in concrete circumstances" unless one f i r s t understands moral con-cepts (e.g., 'justice,' 'needs,' 'desert,' 'welfare'). Applying prin-ciples requires "judgment" and this i n turn requires knowledge of moral concepts. Judgment, he suggests, i s learned i n the presence of someone "who already has i t " ; he likens this to an apprentice/master relation-ship (CP292,298; EI102; OP; EE60; PK155; RH267,272,276; PC257). Summarizing these points, we can say that the notion of 'form' for Peters has to do with seeing the point of having rules or seeing the unity of rules, i n short, reasoning about rules. Initiating persons into content—getting them to act i n accordance with rules—gives them a basis upon which they can reflect on the legitimacy of these rules. 90 Persons must be in i t i a t e d into the content of morality in order to learn the form of morality. 'Form' for Peters also has to do with "applying rules appropriately in particular cases." This involves knowing what makes reasons relevant and to do this, he says, one must know moral concepts, (b) The "teaching" of form As for the teaching of form, Peters says that " i t i s a very d i f f e r -ent matter" from the teaching of content. He says the unity a principle provides to a number of previously disconnected experiences . . . has to be 'seen' or grasped by the individual and i t cannot be grasped as a principle unless the individual i s provided with experience of the items i t unifies. . . . If the teacher i s trying to get the learner to grasp a principle a l l he can do is to draw attention to common features of cases and hope that the penny w i l l drop. Once the child has grasped the principle, he knows how to go on . . . there i s thus no limit to the number of cases that he w i l l see as f a l l i n g under the principle. There i s a sense . . . in which the learner gets out much more than any teacher could have put in . . . prin-ciples are just not the sort of things that can be applied only to a specific number of items which could be imparted by the teacher." (RC37; MD310,311) He takes Kohlberg to task for claiming that a person learns prin-ciples by "interacting with the environment" ("cognitive stimulation"), rather than by a process of teaching: "Kohlberg makes i t look too much as i f the child, as i t were, does i t himself" (ML366). Peters later concedes that "do-it-yourself" methods might be effective in learning principles (FC142) . . (c) Learning form: developing se n s i t i v i t i e s Peters speaks in another way of learning the form of morality: he calls this "the development of s e n s i t i v i t i e s . " Learners must "become 91 sensitized i n early childhood to considerations which w i l l later serve (them) as principles" (MD326). This i s Peters' notion of principles as  motives. The s e n s i t i v i t i e s which can become a person's principles (motives) are concern and compassion for others, sensitivity to others' suffering, a sense of justice and fairness, and sympathy with persons. These se n s i t i v i t i e s and concerns are "preconditions" to there being reasons, he says; they determine relevance i n morals (RC71). (i) caring and reasoning Peters sometimes contrasts caring or concern for others with moral reasoning: What i s the status of a man who can reason in an abstract way about rules i f he does not care about people who are affected by his breach or observance of them? Is not the capacity to love, as well as the capacity to reason, important i n the form of morality? Does i t not transform a person's role-performances and dealings with others? Must not some develop-mental account be given of Hume's sentiment for humanity? (RC26) But Peters also speaks of a person's concern and caring in terms of those principles which become a person's motives. This suggests that Peters believes a person engaged in moral reasoning is_ sensitized to considerations which pick out morally relevant reasons. That i s , a person's engagement i n moral reasoning would be i l l u s t r a t i v e of his care and concern for persons who might be affected by his or others' actions. In any case, Peters holds that the "awakening of the moral agent's fe e l -ings" i s required for engaging i n moral reasoning and for being moral. Peters believes that the origin of feelings of caring and concern may be innate. He certainly believes that these feelings can be nur-tured or hampered by the child's early social relationships, particularly 9 2 the child's relationship with his mother. He is convinced that children (he does not specify ages) cannot understand reasons picked out by the principles, and hence are unable to let those reasons "become motives"— "become their own." His conviction i s based on findings of the Piagetian school of psychology. Children cannot grasp reasons for types of action i n the sense that they cannot connect a practice such as that of stealing with considerations such as the harm to others brought about by such a practice (ML373; RC42). Piaget and Kohlberg, he says, have shown "that children are incapable of appealing to (sensitivities) as backing for rules" (Fr351). Therefore, Peters i n s i s t s , i t i s "point-less" to encourage children to reflect about rules, and to l i n k them with general considerations of harm and benefit, " i f these considerations do not act as powerful motives for the person who can perform such calcula-tions" (MD327). Children can feel genuine concern for others; this much he con-cedes. If (children) are sensitive to the suffering of others early on, the hope i s that, with the development of their capacity for reasoning this w i l l later be one of the main principles i n a rational form of l i f e . (ML373; RC42) Part of the d i f f i c u l t y in assessing Peters' statements here l i e s with his failure to specify the ages at which he thinks children cannot be moved by considerations of harm and benefit. Although he points to strong empirical evidence which suggests that children are "incapable of appealing to s e n s i t i v i t i e s as backing for rules," he does not explore what i t means to say of a child that he has "genuine concern for others." In my view, to say of a child that he is "sensitive to others' 9 3 suffering" or that he has "genuine concern for others" i s to say that this child acts for reasons of sensitivity and concern. The child's "capacity to reason" and his capacity to act for moral reasons i s there from the time adults begin to reason with them. In saying this, I am not only questioning the empirical evidence Peters r e l i e s on by present-ing "empirical observations" of my own. I am also offering a tentative analysis of what i t means to say that anyone (a child) "has s e n s i t i v i t -i e s " or "feels genuine concern for others." ( i i ) the development of the imagination For Peters, the key notion i n the development of these s e n s i t i v i t -ies i s imagination. The development of the imagination, he says, "makes possible fine shades of sen s i t i v i t y and compassion" (LE54). "Concern for others can be exhibited at different levels which vary according to a person's imagination and sophistication about what con-stitutes harm or welfare" (MD313). "Sympathy and imagination are neces-sary not simply for caring about rules s u f f i c i e n t l y to f e e l guilt or remorse i f they are broken. They are necessary also for the sensitive exercise of . . . making exceptions to rules and for seeing situations as f a l l i n g under different rules" (PC261). How does Peters believe imagination develops, and with i t a heightened sensitivity to suffering and concern for others? He says this i s largely a matter for speculation, since our knowledge about this comes from psychoanalytic speculation and from the hunches of practical men (Fr351; PC261). He provides no analysis of the concept 'imagina-tion' and offers only a few unimaginative suggestions for teaching strategies and general environment. 94 Peters suggests the example of parents and teachers i s essential to "imitation and identification" (MD313). But their example must be sup-plemented by purposeful a c t i v i t i e s . Organized religious a c t i v i t i e s and stories about modern heroes have been effective in the past, but now "should be re-assessed." At the least adults must offer children a "degree of first-hand experience: they must not shield young people from suffering, but must encourage them to take part i n practical tasks where there i s suffering to be relieved" (Fr351). As well, adults must teach rules in "non-arbitrary ways" before children are capable of accepting them for the reasons given, "to help them to get to the stage when they follow rules because of the reasons for them." Peters does not say, however, how one can teach i n a "non-arbitrary" way without giving reasons; nor does he say what counts as "arbitrary" and "non-arbitrary" when one rules out the giving of reasons. Peters toys with the suggestion that 'training' and 'habituation' might be appropriate notions i n the development of a child's s e n s i t i v i t -ies. But 'habituation' " i s probably a misplaced (notion) here," he concludes, "for the last thing we want i s to habituate children to the sight of suffering" (MD327). As well, he believes the notion 'habit' "cannot really get a grip here" (MD318). Reluctant to give up the notion 'habit,' however, Peters recommends that adults "expose children a b i t to the sight of suffering, or at least not shield them from situa-tions where they w i l l be confronted by i t i n a first-hand way." In this way, he says, children can be encouraged to "form the habit of paying attention to peoples' suffering rather than just concentrating on their own projects." This habit of mind would not be a virtue, he 95 adds, "but i t might predispose children to be influenced by compassion on ( specific occasions" (MD327). Peters believes that the best environment for encouraging the development of s e n s i t i v i t i e s (and by implication the development of the imagination), i s one in which "discussion and c r i t i c i s m " i s a feature. "Reasons for doing things can be indicated quite early on, even though i t is appreciated that the child cannot yet think i n this way." With-out "cognitive stimulation" in the environment, a "reflective attitude towards rules i s unlikely to develop." The use of "appropriate" lan-guage is an important consideration here, he says. "Middle class language" i s better suited for a r e f l e c t i v e or reasoning attitude, Peters claims, than "working class language" (Fr351). This comment is an interesting one, given Peters' objections to the notion of "class" (DD). Although Peters does not specify many details about how he believes imagination develops, he is persuaded that there are conditions which stunt the development of s e n s i t i v i t i e s towards other persons. He believes that i f adults consistently employ punitive and rejecting tech-niques towards children, making them fe e l guilty and unworthy, children w i l l l i k e l y not reach a rational form of morality. Some sorts of extrinsic aids, such as punishment, may encourage r i g i d i t y or lack of intelligence in rule-following that may become compulsive (RC66ff.). Peters also believes that complete permissiveness—or "inconsis-tency of treatment" (providing children with "no determinate expecta-t i o n s " ) — a l s o stunts development. Children need predictability, he ins i s t s , so that they can learn to predict consequences. They need a consistent pattern of rules, and an accepting attitude towards them-selves. To humiliate children i s to "diminish their view of themselves as persons." * * * * * * In this section, I have looked at Peters' discussions of teaching and learning moral rules and principles. Peters believes that moral rules are learned by grasping the concepts peculiar to the rules and by conforming one's behaviour to these rules. They are "taught" using methods of induction and conditioning. Principles, on the other hand, cannot be "taught." A person properly inducted into the moral rules w i l l come to see principles which give backing to rules. The educator s role here i s to stimulate the child's s e n s i t i v i t i e s by helping to develop his moral imagination. And this, Peters says, i s best done i n an atmosphere of reason-giving. Peters' account here is relatively uncontroversial. But there i s something odd about his dual claims: that children must learn moral rules by conforming to them, and that children's s e n s i t i v i t i e s to others can be developed early on. I have already made some comments on this i n the section on caring and reasoning, but I w i l l look at the concep-tual issues more closely in Chapter A. There I examine Peters' anal-yses of the concepts 'habits' and 'motives.' II. Form and Content Thus far, I have systematized Peters' discussions on the teaching and learning of moral rules and principles. He makes both direct and indirect references to the notions of 'form' and 'content.' In this 97 section, I consider these notions in more de t a i l . My f i r s t section on the form of morality consists of four parts: Peters' use of the term "formal," his argument concerning 'form' as the evidential holding of beliefs, his objections to Piaget and Kolberg's notion of 'form,' and his notion of 'form' as the development of autonomy in morals. A. The Form of Morality 1. Peters' Use of "Formal" In the section on principles, we saw that Peters considers moral principles to be highly formal i n character. He also says that prin-ciples are more general than moral rules. (a) Formal, rational principles ' Recall that Peters considers his five principles are the pre-suppositions of rational thought and action. He claims that the prin-ciples he c a l l s "fundamental" to morality are formal principles: they are the principles presupposed in asking oneself what there are reasons for doing. At one point, he suggests that these principles may be necessary principles: If i t could be shown that certain principles are necessary for a form of discourse to have meaning, to be applied or to have point, then this would be a very strong argument for the j u s t i -fication of the principles i n question. • They would show what anyone must be committed to who uses i t seriously. (EE115) Regarding the principle of consideration of interests, however, he admits that i t cannot be demonstrated as necessary for the application of reasoning to interpersonal conduct. Yet he s t i l l c a l l s this prin-ciple a "precondition" i n his system of rational morality (ML364). Whether or not he regards a l l five principles as necessary for the application of reasoning to interpersonal conduct, he does speak of them as required by practical reason. Noticeably, he avoids the issue whether there are any differences between kinds of "requiredness" In the principles. It may be that i f a l l five principles are required by rational thought, they are required i n different ways. More than one sense of "rational" may be implied. In i t s minimal version, the principle of equality appears to be a straightforward case of a formal, "rational" principle. This principle says that we must judge similar cases similarly unless there aire rele-vant grounds for judging the cases differently. In other words, we must have reasons for judging cases differently. This formulation of the equality principle i s similar to Hare's formulation of the principle of universalizability in his account of moral reasoning (Hare, 1952, 1964). The principle of equality and the principle of universaliz-a b i l i t y both point to a sense of "rational" which means being consistent with regard to one's judgments or use of moral concepts (being logically consistent). Likewise, there seems to be some concern for truth "presupposed" by someone asking questions concerning his own practical conduct. If concern for truth i s what Peters intends by his principle of truth-t e l l i n g (and I have said earlier that he is confusing on this point), the principle of truth-seeking is a formal, rational principle. So also i s the principle of freedom in one of i t s versions: an agent pre-sumes (presupposes) himself to be free to act on decisions he comes to. Let us c a l l these formal principles which appear to be required by rational thought, Group 1 principles. Of course, Peters could be c r i t i c i z e d here for suggesting that these "preconditions of rational thought" are principles of rational thought. After a l l , not a l l necessary conditions of rationality ("preconditions") are principles which must be adopted by the deliber-ator. Nevertheless I w i l l continue to c a l l these "preconditions" Group 1 principles since this i s Peters' own terminology. (b) 'Moral' and 'Substantive' principles The other principles and principle-versions i n Peters' account d i f f e r from Group 1 principles. He suggests a more "full-blooded" ver-sion of the equality or justice principle: an agent must judge other persons' interests impartially with his own. He includes a principle of consideration of interests and a principle of respect for persons. In addition, Peters believes that we must t e l l the truth (not l i e ) , and that we must not interfere with other persons' liberty. These principles and principle-versions (Group 2 principles) are highly general and formal. But Peters does not argue in a completely convincing manner that these principles are presupposed or required by the asking of questions concerning moral or_ practical conduct. If these principles are required by practical reason they may be required in a way which differs from Group 1 principles. Group 1 principles are "rational" principles i n that they refer to a kind of "conceptual consistency." Group 2 principles are "rational" principles in that they have to do with actions which might have harmful effects on other persons. Group 2 principles demarcate an area of moral concerns from non-100 moral concerns. They help to distinguish a "moral point of view," one cl a s s i f i c a t i o n among several under the rubric "practical reason." They provide the "evaluative premises" for Group 1 principles; they help to determine what are morally relevant reasons. It might be objected here that impartiality, consideration of interests and respect for persons do not provide evaluative premises; that one gets these premises only after deciding what things are in persons' interests, and only after deciding what a person i s entitled to in the way of treatment by others. In response to this, i t could be said that Peters thinks that these principles do t e l l us what are i n persons' interests (avoidance of pain, non-injury, minimum standards of food and shelter). His fail u r e to be clear in stating his principles should not deflect us from what I believe i s his intent: to state what persons are entitled to and to state what are in persons' interests. It i s tempting to c a l l Peters' Group 2 p r i n c i p l e s — p r i n c i p l e s which distinguish moral from non-moral concerns—"substantive" prin-ciples. This is common enough in discussions of ethical principles. But Peters avoids the word "substantive" except in respect of particular "substantive issues" we must decide (e.g., gambling RC14 and just, wages MD332). One reason for his avoidance of the word "substantive" could be the ambiguity of the notion. Although i t i s common to contrast "sub-stantive" with "formal" principles, on some occasions we. might consider formal principles to be substantive ones. For example, the equality principle could be regarded as a "substantive" principle: i t t e l l s us to be consistent i n our judgments—to use reason—even though i t does not t e l l us what are relevant reasons for particular cases. The term "substantive" can play double-duty: i t can t e l l us that we should use reason, and i t can point to reasons which are relevant. Peters might well have used the term "substantive" with reference to his moral rules, since the term "substantive" i s used to refer to specific guides to action. But i f he had, i t is unlikely he would also use the term with reference to his principles. Recall that he believes principles function differently from rules. Principles, he says, act only as "signposts," not as "guidebooks." They sensitize us to consid-erations; they do not supply specific guides to action. Principles are more general than rules; they provide backing to rules. What i s the importance of this discussion for the task of c l a r i f y -ing Peters' sense of the form of morality? Just this. Peters uses the term "formal" with reference to a l l five fundamental principles, but this usage obscures differences between the principles. Some are pre-conditions (principles) of rational thought; others are principles which t e l l us something of what we should and should not do to other persons. Both are "rational" principles; to act on both would suggest some kind of "consistency." Yet Group 2 principles have to do with taking others' interests into account while Group 1 principles do not. We can anticipate, therefore, that when Peters speaks of knowing or learning the form of morality and when he speaks of the formal prop-erties of moral reasoning, he w i l l be referring both to reasoning as such, and to certain kinds of reasons: morally relevant reasons. 102 2. 'Form1: Holding Beliefs Evidentially A clearer picture of Peters' understanding of 'form' emerges i n his paper "The Form and Content of Moral Education." Form and content, he says, are parts of the "structure" of what has to be learned i n moral education. In this paper, he speaks of form as the way i n which beliefs are held. The distinction between form and content, he begins, " i s similar to that which can be made in the sphere of beliefs about the world." Each belief (e.g., that the earth i s round) could be held i n different ways: evidentially or non-evidentially. "A b e l i e f with the same content could be held i n quite different ways, which could constitute two distinct forms the belief might have" (FC142). Holding beliefs rationally or on evidence, i s to adopt only one of many possible forms for beliefs. There could be different forms, that i s , assent to different evidence about the same beliefs (content). He gives the example of the belief "It i s wrong to break promises." Various persons may have this belief, but they may d i f f e r i n their reasons for having the belief: they may disagree on why promise-breaking is wrong. The reasons they adduce for having the belief may be based on custom, tradition, or "authoritative sources" (religion). Peters says he i s committed to the rational form of morality: i n this form beliefs are held evidentially, i.e., on good grounds. Peters does not claim that persons l i k e himself who hold beliefs evidentially, or rationally, think alike about such beliefs. In the example of promising, two persons might think promise-breaking i s wrong, but they may think this for different reasons. These persons, Peters . • 103 says, give different weights to considerations relevant to holding the beliefs. Peters specifies the kinds of considerations which constitute the form of morality to which he i s committed (FC148). The notion of 'form' for him means holding beliefs on the evidence. But only certain evi-dence is relevant to moral decisions: to say of a person that he holds a moral belief rationally i s to say that he considers relevant those features picked out by the five fundamental principles. These are the principles, he says, which supply a "form for the moral consciousness" (FC144). In this argument Peters uses the term 'form' to refer to the many ways beliefs can be held; there are many such 'forms.' And Peters says that he is committed to only one of these 'forms'—holding beliefs on evidence. But notice how his notion of evidence i s circumscribed by his understanding of the principles he thinks are presuppositions of rational thought. If i t could be shown that these principles are not the pre-suppositions of rational thought, what would this do to his notion of evidence for a moral belief? Would he say that there was no longer evidence for a moral belief? Peters does not consider the p o s s i b i l i t y that there may be other ways of holding beliefs "on the evidence" which do not refer to features "made relevant by his fundamental principles." 3. Peters' Objections to Kohlberg's Notion of 'Form' Peters gives hints as to his own view of the form of morality in his many discussions of the work of the psychologist, Lawrence Kohlberg. Again we see Peters' claim that there can be more than one form of morality, and that Kohlberg emphasizes the wrong one. Before noting 1 0 4 Peters' objections to the Kohlberg account, I outline this account in brief. I rely here on Peters' own summary of Kohlberg. Kohlberg claims there Is a difference between cultures in the content of their moral beliefs, but that the form of morality i s a cul-tural invariant. That i s , he believes there are cultural variations regarding t h r i f t , punctuality and sexual relationships, for example, but cross-cultural uniformities " i n how such rules are conceived." Kohlberg proposes a stage-developmental account of moral learning, which, he claims, i s confirmed by extensive empirical investigations. Regardless of the cultural setting, children start by seeing rules as dependent upon power and external compulsion; they then see them as instrumental to rewards and to the satisfaction of their needs; then as ways of obtaining some ideal order, and f i n a l l y as articulations of social principles l i k e justice, which are necessary to l i v i n g together with others. "Varying contents given to rules are f i t t e d into invariant forms of conceiving of rules" (RC42; LE47; MD304; see Appendix). The ways of conceiving rules, Kohlberg maintains, characterize different levels of development; they form a 'logical hierarchy.' Moral development proceeds when a person passes from the 'heteronomous' sta g e — i n which rules are regarded as " l a i d down" by peer group or family—to the autonomous stage when questions of their v a l i d i t y can be entertained and their basis i n reciprocity and consent discerned. This development, says Kohlberg, could not be i n any other order, although i t can be retarded or accelerated by social factors (RC24; MD304). In his use of the phrase "cognitive stimulation, 1 1 Kohlberg sug-gests how progression through the different stages might be accelerated. 105 Although Kohlberg does not clearly set out what he means by "cognitive stimulation," he thinks i t di f f e r s from "teaching," that i s , e x p l i c i t instruction. Cognitive stimulation can help a person to pass through one stage to another "higher" one. This stimulation, presumably, comes through the person's "interaction with the environment": the person's interaction with peers, authorities and "institutions." Peters c r i t i c i z e s Kohlberg's theory on three fronts: on his notion of the hierarchical ordering of stages, on his notion of cognitive stimulation versus teaching, and on the emphasis he gives to the 'form' of morality. I mention b r i e f l y Peters' f i r s t two objections before considering the third. F i r s t , Peters worries whether "the stages l o g i c a l l y must occur i n the order which research has revealed them to occur" (PK150). He won-ders as well whether empirical investigation was even necessary to find out what could have ascertained by reflection. It would be d i f f i c u l t to see how an autonomous type of morality could precede a conventional one; for unless a child has had some prior introduction to rule-following and knows, from the inside, as i t were, what i t i s to apply rules to his conduct, the notion of accepting or rejecting rules for himself, would scarcely seem i n t e l l i g i b l e . (PK150) Kohlberg's extensive empirical investigations, Peters suspects, are somewhat redundant. In earlier writing (LE47), Peters appears to accept Kohlberg's "logical hierarchy of stages." In later a r t i c l e s he expresses more skepticism. Kohlberg's notion of the "logical hierarchy of stages," he concludes, does not really explain the notion of "cultural invariance. Peters sees no logical necessity i n the claim that a 'good boy' morality 1 0 6 of the peer group must precede a morality more dependent on the approval of authorities, or that "children must conceive of rules as connected with punishment before they see them as connected with rewards." As well, Peters sees no lo g i c a l reason why a person reaching autonomy "should not come up with any type of ethical position, rather than pass-ing from a system characterized by an ideal order to one characterized by abstract principles" (PK150). Commenting on Kohlberg's vague analysis of 'cognitive stimulation,' Peters writes that the notion could cover 'teaching,' i f Kohlberg expanded his notion of teaching to include more than "e x p l i c i t instruc-tion." In fact, says Peters, the notion of 'cognitive stimulation' "must be extended to cover a l l social influences, many of which could be legitimately thought of as forms of teaching" (FC151). Peters' chief objection to Kohlberg's account l i e s with what he believes i s i t s one-sidedness: the exclusive concentration on the form of morality, and not i t s content. Peters describes Kohlberg's and Piaget's accounts of moral devel-opment as very "Kantian" ones. "What emerges as the end-point of moral development," he says, " i s the autonomous individual acting on prin-ciples that can be universalized, with strength of w i l l to stick to them" (RC25; ML366). Peters points out what he thinks are defects of this notion of moral development. F i r s t , there is exclusive interest in how the individual conceives of interpersonal rules, without any probing of motives that explain their actions. Peters c a l l s this a "monadic account of development . . . too simple, too monolithic" (RC26; DB193). Second, there i s no assessment "of the intensity and level of 107 compassion which suffuses a person's dealing with others." Peters says i n some places that both Piaget and Kohlberg concentrate on the form of morality "viewed in terms of the way rules are conceived and the manner in which they are followed" (RC26). In other places, Peters says that Kohlberg i s at fault for concentrating on only one form of morality (FC151). As part of his criticism, Peters takes Kohlberg to task for not attending to the learning of content. Kohlberg i s wrong to deemphasize content by referring to i t as a "mere bag of virtues." Kohlberg's notion of 'habit,' Peters maintains, i s wrongly conceived (RC34; MD305, 307; ML366). Charging that Kohlberg pays no attention at a l l to the affective side of moral development, Peters i n s i s t s that Kohlberg's distinction between t r a i t s and principles i s ill-conceived, and that he has no clear view of how the term 'principle' functions (MD312; RK678). There is a hollow ring to Peters' criticisms of the Kohlberg account of 'form.' Let us consider his comments. F i r s t , Peters says that Kohlberg i s at fault for attending only to the 'form' of morality. Then he accuses Kohlberg of attending to a particular 'form' of morality. What seems to upset Peters i s Kohlberg's emphasis on the reasons persons have for conforming to or obeying rules. Kohlberg believes that persons see rule-obedience as a means for avoiding punishment, then as necessary i n some sense to social functioning. But Peters' own views pa r a l l e l these; i n fact he relies heavily on Kohlberg for support of his own thesis: persons conform to rules before they obey them. Moreover, Peters re l i e s on the notions of 'conditioning' and 'reinforcement' for the child's learning of rules because he believes, along with Piaget and Kohlberg, that the child's conceptual apparatus i s not ready for him to understand and act for moral reasons (motives). Second, Peters charges that Kohlberg attends to only one form of morality. He strikes out at Kohlberg for maintaining that only the justice principle i l l u s t r a t e s the highest-order reasoning i n his stage-developmental account. Peters alleges that Kohlberg has not paid any attention to other higher-order principles l i k e respect for persons. But Kohlberg i s aware that commitment to the justice principle involves commitment to principles which make certain considerations morally relevant. Kohlberg says of stage 6 reasoning, "these are universal principles of justice, of reciprocity and equality of human rights, and respect for the dignity of human beings as individual persons" (see Appendix II) . It is true that Kohlberg does not speak of the motives of concern, compassion and benevolence, and he does not speak of sensitivity to suffering. But Kohlberg does s p e l l out the motives persons have at each of the stages. At stage 1 , the person acts so as to avoid punish-ment, at stage 3 , the person acts so as to avoid a guilty conscience, and at stage 6 Kohlberg suggests, at least, that the person's motive i s 'being just.' In sum, Peters' objections to Kohlberg are not very convincing ones. And Peters does not make clear how his own account of moral reasoning i s a substantial departure from the Kohlberg (stage 6) account. 109 4. 'Form' as the Development of Autonomy In this section, I relate Peters' views on 'form' as the develop-ment of autonomy i n morals: to learn the form of morality means learning to be autonomous or independent in one's moral reasoning. Peters speaks of 'autonomy in morals' in terms of one's reasoning capacities and in terms of developing feelings or s e n s i t i v i t i e s for others. As I have sum-marized oh p. 90ff. his views on the second of these, I attend here to statements he makes about the f i r s t . He offers no new insights on the notion of 'form.' Rather, he speaks of those conditions necessary for developing reasoning a b i l i t i e s . He discusses the development of persons' rational capacities in terms of enabling persons to become choosers; this i s reminiscent of his discussion of "freedom." Persons must acquire "basic cognitive and affective apparatuses without which (they) could not qualify as moral agents i n the f u l l sense." They must learn to "delay gratification, and use publicly assessable reasons; they must learn to act after delib-eration." Piaget and Kohlberg, following Kant, were right to say that this presupposes the development of a type of "categoreal apparatus." Choosers must learn to take means to ends, appreciate causal properties of things, and distinguish consequences; the categoreal concepts 'thing-hood,' 'causality,' 'means to ends' are important ones for choosers to grasp (RC36ff.). Various social conditions militate against the development of reasoning a b i l i t i e s ; these conditions often create what he ca l l s "path-ological states." Psychopaths and schizophrenics lack the sense of "integral selfhood and personal identity, of the permanency of things, 110 of the r e l i a b i l i t y of natural processes, of the substantiality of others.' These states are cases of " i r r a t i o n a l i t y . " He also speaks of cases of "unreasonableness" where there i s a limited development of capacities necessary for becoming choosers. Choosers, Peters concludes, must develop the a b i l i t y to abstract and use generalizations. They must per-ceive the world as an ordered universe i n which rational action i s rewarded. They must plan ahead and exercise self-control. As well, choosers must have self-confidence (RC36-41). The notion of persons becoming "choosers"—choosing reasons or choosing principles—presents problems with which Peters does not grapple On one lev e l , i t makes sense to say that persons can choose their reasons that they can be autonomous or independent i n their thinking on moral matters. On another level i t . makes no sense at a l l to speak of persons choosing what are abstract moral principles and rules. Peters seems not to see any d i f f i c u l t y in his position: moral agents cannot be autonomous unless they become "choosers," but the only choices open to them are circumscribed by the "procedural" (fundamental) principles. If an autonomous agent chooses i n accord with Peters' principles, this does not guarantee that he w i l l make choices which avoid or prevent harm to other persons. 5. Comments on Peters' Notion of 'Form' Clearly, Peters wants the notion of form to mean something l i k e reasoning: this reasoning is to include making inferences of various sorts, and i t includes caring about the consequences of actions (RC32; ML363). He also wants to contrast this sense of form with other forms (reasons) for holding be l i e f s , i . e . , tradition, peer pressure, or I l l authority. But he i s less than persuasive when he c r i t i c i z e s Kohlberg's "exclusive emphasis on form," and offers l i t t l e in his talk of autonomous moral choices. He generally treats the notion of 'form' so cursorily that we cannot be certain what he believes about the notion. B. The Content of Morality In his criticism of Kohlberg, Peters remarks that Kohlberg's high-est order p r i n c i p l e — t h e justice principle—should have been supple-mented by other principles, ones l i k e respect for persons. Peters con-tinues: " . . . the evaluative premises which are required for a commit-ment to the justice principle ... . open up obvious p o s s i b i l i t i e s for alternative emphases i n morality." Peters asks, 'Are these emphases to be put on the "formal" side or on the "content" side?' (MD331). Peters does not supply an answer. Either he i s not clear himself what he means by the content of morality or he i s simply pointing to a common d i f f i c u l t y of categorizing various considerations as form or content. From the earlier section on the teaching and learning of rules and principles, we know that learning content for Peters means the learning of moral rules. Kohlberg's fa i l u r e to stress the importance of learning content (rules) led Peters to c r i t i c i z e Kohlberg's account. But Peters himself has many things in mind when he speaks of the content of morality. In this section, I bring together Peters' senses of 'content.' F i r s t , however, I make some general remarks about 'the content of morality.' 1. Why Content i s Stressed Peters i s not alone in emphasizing as he does the content of morality and of moral education. The trend i n current ethical philosophy 112 and in several moral education projects has been to stress the importance of good reasoning and reasoning a b i l i t y i n deciding moral matters. Some writers have maintained that analyses of moral reasoning have been carried out without due regard to the central concern of morality: the avoidance and prevention of actions harmful to persons. R. M. Hare's work, for example, centers on the l o g i c a l properties of moral reasoning. Universalizability and Prescriptivity, he claims, are lo g i c a l l y necessary features of moral judgments. Hare believes that i f a person universally prescribes a particular judgment, the judgment w i l l be one which coincides with our moral, sentiments. But certain implications of his views have been c r i t i c i z e d for exactly t h i s : other writers point out that a person might well universally prescribe an action which offends our moral s e n s i t i v i t i e s , e.g., universally prescrib-ing the judgment that a l l Jews should be k i l l e d (Coombs, 1975, p. 10). Partly i n response to Hare's work, Frankena and Warnock argue that the content of morality ought not to be ignored. These writers regard content not as an alternative to reason i n morals, nor as an alternative to the study of the logic of moral reasoning, but as an integral part of moral reasoning. For both authors, the notion of content i n morality has to do with the avoidance of harm to persons (Frankena 1970; Warnock 1967). ' 2. Conceptions of Content If we were asked to elaborate on what we mean by the content of morality, there are several topics upon which we could dwell. I out-line here three ways we could talk about 'content,' then review what Peters says about each. 113 (a) The formal/substantive distinction We frequently speak of the differences between formal and sub-stantive principles. The substantive side of the distinction i s often said to pick out moral principles (classificatory sense), while the formal side i s said to pick out rational principles. Substantive prin-ciples are believed to offer content to formal principles of moral reason-ing: substantive principles t e l l us what considerations are l i k e l y to be relevant to moral decisions. (b) Moral rules and their concepts A second way to consider 'content' i s to talk of moral rules. Rules provide specific guides to action; they t e l l us what to do and what not to do. The notion of the content of morality, some say, i s given some "substance" or "content" by talk of rules. The analysis of concepts peculiar to the rules—ones l i k e 'cheating,' 'bullying,' and 'stealing,'—indicate more f u l l y what this content i s l i k e . (c) Persons and harm A third place for considering the content of morality i s deciding how we are to apply—put into practice—the rules and principles of morality. If agents are to "take into account certain morally relevant considerations," they should be sensitized to those who would be affected by the agents' actions. If agents come to have the concept of a 'person,' and i f they "use" this concept i n their moral deliberations, they should have at least prima facie reasons for not engaging in activ-i t i e s which are harmful to persons. As several writers have said (e.g., Williams, op_. ci t . ) the notion of a 'person' i s conceptually related to the notion of 'rights.' The 114 concept 'rights,' at least, i s a moral notion: i t cannot be "read off" the facts. The concept 'harm' is an empirical notion, but i t i s often spelled out i n what appear to be moral notions—cheating, lying, promise-breaking. If agents are to be introduced to the content of morality, they must at least come to have the concepts 'person,' 'rights' and 'harm.' 3. Peters' Discussions of Content Let us see now how Peters' comments on 'content' can be c l a s s i f i e d i n terms of these three categories. He speaks of 'content' in s t i l l other ways; this we w i l l see .in part 4. (a) The formal/substantive distinction As I have said ea r l i e r , Peters c l a s s i f i e s a l l five principles as formal ones. I have claimed that subsumed under this category are d i f -ferent sorts of principles. Some of these are principles or precondi-tions of rational thought; others are principles by which we can decide what are morally relevant differences or content for the formal principle of equality (justice). Given the differences among Peters' formal principles, i t i s understandable why Peters finds i t d i f f i c u l t to classify certain considerations as formal pr as content notions. (b) Moral rules and their concepts By far the largest part of Peters' discussion of content reflects his interest in the learning of moral rules. When he speaks of learning and teaching the content of morality, this most often means the teaching and learning of rules. Noticeably he doesn't distinguish learning or teaching one type of content—basic social rules—from learning and teaching another type of content, local or relative rules. As I have -115 said earlier, Peters' category of relative rules resembles issues or dilemmas a person must decide. The learning and teaching of basic rules would no doubt d i f f e r from the learning and teaching of relative rules. Peters stresses that to learn the basic rules, one needs to have a grasp of moral concepts pecu-l i a r to those rules; and one must act in conformity with the rules. In learning local or relative rules, one would no doubt be required to have moral concepts such as 'rights' and 'persons,' and as well, be required to make well-grounded decisions about issues "using" those con-cepts. Making well-grounded decisions about moral issues would pre-suppose having some knowledge about how to j u s t i f y moral decisions, and the knowledge, s k i l l and disposition to act on those judgments. Peters offers l i t t l e or no comment on the moral-rule concepts l i k e bullying and cheating, caring for the young, caring for property, and the keeping of contracts. He gives a few comments on the notion of 'steal-ing' and 'promising,' but nothing in the way of analyses, (c) Persons and harm In discussing Peters' principle of respect for persons, I summar-ized what Peters says on the concept of a 'person.' The notion of a person—regarding him as a rational being—"is not just a fact about the world, i t i s a fact of supreme ethical importance" (EE209). Peters goes on to say that a man can be said to have the concept of a person "only i f he thinks that the fact that he and others represent distinct points of view is a matter of importance" (EE224). Again, he says: "to regard people as persons i s to consider them as beings with rights and duties. This i s distinct from seeing them as the mere occupants of 116 roles" (CP289,293; ME96). Peters does not broach the tricky question of how rational a person must be to b_e a person, or how much potential to be rational a being has. He doesn't say whether foetuses, young children, beings with less than average intelligence, or the senile are persons, and he doesn't say whether their rights are of the same kind that normal adults have. 4. Peters' Other Senses of 'Content' We have seen i n the previous section that Peters has many things to say about the content of morality where this means "those considera-tions which are relevant to morality and which must be acted on in order to be moral." In addition'to this sense of 'the content of morality,' Peters speaks of content as those aspects of one's l i f e which can be affected by making and acting on "moral" decisions, (a) Roles and duties While Peters advises that we regard individuals as persons, and not as the mere occupants of roles, he also advises that our own roles and duties, and the attitude we take toward f u l f i l l i n g these, i s an import-ant part of the content of the 'moral l i f e ' : (The moral l i f e ) . . . i s a complex a f f a i r involving roles, activ-i t i e s , motives and interpersonal rules. It also involves the disposition to be c r i t i c a l of this wide-ranging content in which any generation must necessarily be nurtured. (CP300) Under the concepts 'obligation' and 'duty,' he says, " f a l l ways of behaving connected with social roles. Much of a person's l i f e i s taken up with his station and i t s duties, with what i s socially required of him as a husband, father, c i t i z e n and member of a profession or occupa-tion" (RC16; CP289). Not only must the moral agent attend to those duties which accom-pany his various roles, he should carry them out with vigour and dedica-tion. A person's conduct i n his role might display a certain "second-handedness," a "lack of authenticity or genuineness." A person might not really make his "roles, rules and reactions" his own. He may l i v e his l i f e as a kind of " t o i l " or i n a way which suggests he needs approval. Occupying a role in such a way as to suggest either "simula-tion or second-handedness" should not be confused, he says, with a genuine commitment to a role (CP297). The norms connected with treat-ing people as persons "should penetrate those connected with roles" (CP289). Surely Peters i s correct to say that i f an agent i s to be moral, he must treat other people as persons whenever he has dealings with them. But i t i s not clear how carrying out one's role-duties with authenticity and genuineness i s a requirement for 'being moral.' I w i l l discuss this further i n Chapter 5. (b) Worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s The moral l i f e , says Peters, "must have content as well as pro-cedural principles for reasoning about what one is to do, be or think. Some account has to be given of what a man's interests are, of the realm of the pursuit of what i s good or worthwhile" (RC22). Again, we see Peters' interpretation of 'moral' in terms of 'ethical excellences' (see Chapter 2). (c) Character-traits and motives Peters also speaks of the content of morality in terms of having the right character-traits and motives. I discuss one set of 118 character-traits i n the next chapter: those habits connected with social rules l i k e punctuality, honesty, tidiness and honesty. Another set of tr a i t s — ; t h e self-control t r a i t s — I examine i n Chapter 5 . The notion 'motive' straddles*both 'form' and 'content' i n Peters' portrayal of the moral l i f e ; I examine this notion in the chapter to follow. i CHAPTER A Habits, Motives and Emotions Habits, l i k e motives or emotions, are not, as i t were, part of the furniture of the mind in the way in which the yellow, green and black are part of a snooker set. These terms are higher-order ones by means of which we say a l l sorts of extra things about peoples' actions and feelings. (RH275) In this chapter, I examine more closely three key concepts in Peters' view of moral education: 'habits,' 'motives,' and 'emotions.' A recapitulation of my summary i n Chapters 2 and 3 lays out the d i f f i -culties with his notions of "habit" and "habit-training." I examine next his analysis of 'motive' to see how i t contributes to our under-standing of 'moral motives.' Finally, I add to his account of 'reason' and 'feeling' by looking at his account of emotions i n the moral l i f e . I. Habits A. The Problems In Chapters 2 and 3 I mention frequently Peters' insistence that the moral development of children must begin with habit-training. The habits he points to are 'being punctual,' 'being polite,' 'being tidy,' and' 'being honest.' But he emphasizes as well habituation to other "basic" and " l o c a l " rules. Moral training in these rules, he says, involves more than "know-how" or "knack." Children must learn (a) that certain classes of action are wrong, and (b) how to behave in the required way. This is achieved, he claims, through instruction, 119 120 example, practice and imitation (see Ch. 2, pp. 34ff.; Ch. 3, pp. 85ff.). Moral training must include the use of extrinsic conditioning aids such as rewards and approval. Peters believes that children cannot learn to reason about moral matters u n t i l they have reached a certain level of cognitive development. Children cannot grasp principles nor can they raise questions about the v a l i d i t y of rules. In their early years, (children) cannot accept rules i n a rational way or be taught rules by processes such as explan-ation and persuasion, which depend upon the a b i l i t y to grasp a principle. (MD312) At the same time, Peters holds that children can learn such rele-vant s e n s i t i v i t i e s as concern for others and sympathy to others' suffer-ing. Indeed they must learn to have s e n s i t i v i t i e s or be sensitive, he claims, i f they are to reason on moral matters when they are older (Ch. 3, pp. 90ff.). Principles, he says, can later function as agents' motives—reasons which "become the agents' own." I have drawn attention i n Chapter 2 to some d i f f i c u l t i e s with Peters' account of training i n (practicing) the moral rules. As well, I have pointed to problems in his argument concerning conditioning as supplementary to the "teaching" of moral rules (see pp. 33ff.). Coin-cident with these problems i s the "parallelism" (my term) Peters expects between the task of habit-training and the task of developing sensitiv-i t i e s . I spell this out below. To review his position, Peters believes that learning to be auton-omous in morality i s to learn the form of morality. Being autonomous, or knowing the form of morality, means having the a b i l i t y to reason well on matters of moral concern. That a b i l i t y includes sensitivity to 121 considerations "made relevant by the principles." He speaks in two ways about learning form: (1) a person comes to see principles which give "unity" to the rules which he now habitually obeys (Peters c a l l s this "generalizing from a bag of virtues"), and (2) a person develops sensi-t i v i t i e s (concern for others) and learning them i s part of what i t means to learn a form of reasoning. Peters believes that the a c t i v i t i e s engaged i n so as to achieve (1) must proceed somewhat independently of those a c t i v i t i e s engaged in so as to achieve (2), and that a c t i v i t i e s pertinent to (1) are, i n some sense, preconditions to the achievement of tasks pertinent to (2). We should f i r s t assess whether Peters i s internally consistent. ' One inconsistency is apparent in Peters' views about reason-giving. He suggests that in developing the child's imagination further to increas-ing that child's s e n s i t i v i t i e s , adults should provide reasons for acting, even though " i t i s appreciated that children cannot yet think i n this way" (Ch. 3, p. 95). Yet he i n s i s t s that giving reasons to children may be a "pointless" endeavour because "children are unable to l e t prin-ciples become their motives (reasons which move them to act)" (Ch. 3, p. 95). This vac i l l a t i o n stems, no doubt, from his reluctance to lay out clearly what he believes is involved i n giving children reasons and what i t i s to get children to understand or "use" reason. I return to this point later. But Peters i s not consistent i f he maintains both that i t i s pointless to give children reasons for acting, and that reasons for acting can and should be pointed out to children "early on." Suppose we temporarily ignore his remark about the pointlessness of providing children with reasons, and concentrate instead on his 122 suggestion that the child's imagination and concern for others can be encouraged by providing an atmosphere in which discussion and c r i t i c i s m (reason-giving) i s a feature. If an adult were to act on Peters' sug-gestion that reasons for acting can and should be indicated early on i n order that the child's s e n s i t i v i t i e s be developed, why couldn't the adult indicate reasons for acting so as to get the child to act on the moral rules? Indeed, would not the adult's giving of reasons, done for the adult's purpose of imagination-development, l i k e l y be viewed by the child as reason why he (the child) should act in certain ways and not i n others? What I suggest is that Peters has inadequate grounds for deny-ing the p o s s i b i l i t y that children at an early age may very well under-stand reasons for behaving (acting) i n certain ways. He may also be remiss in not exploring the p o s s i b i l i t y that this understanding coin-cides—conceptually and empirically—with the development of that child's sensitivities to other persons. For to say that a child's s e n s i t i v i t i e s to others "are being developed" is to say that the child i s learning to understand and act on reasons which show his sensitivity to other persons. Now some may object that what I c a l l an inconsistency on.Peters' part is not an inconsistency at a l l . They might claim that one can develop a child's s e n s i t i v i t i e s and feelings for others, and that the child might not "connect" these s e n s i t i v i t i e s with reasons for acting. But, in respect of moral s e n s i t i v i t i e s and feelings, I cannot imagine circumstances where we would say of a child that he had s e n s i t i v i t i e s and concern for others, i f he did not connect these feelings with reasons for doing certain things and reasons for not doing others. This i s not to deny that a child could have s e n s i t i v i t i e s and not be 123 disposed to act on them in particular circumstances. What i t does say is that having se n s i t i v i t i e s must somehow be reflected i n what the child does and i n his reasons for acting. Peters might grant this. But he might s t i l l try to argue that before a child can understand reasons (what I have called "being disposed to use or appeal to reason"), of at the same time as he understands reasons, he must also develop dispositions to behave in the required ways. Peters might say that the child must s t i l l be trained i n moral habits—made to conform to desired standards of behaviour. But I would claim, i n response to this, that i f a child comes to understand and act on reasons (of concern and compassion for example), he has already begun to develop "dispositions to behave i n the required ways: he has begun to develop dispositions to appeal to reason in deciding what he should or should not do."* We must see, then, how Peters reconciles habit-training and the "disposition to act on reason." Now follows an examination of Peters' analysis of 'habit' to see what persuaded Peters to place so much emphasis on this notion. B. Peters' Analysis of 'Habit' Peters frequently speaks of 'habit-formation,' as I have said, in terms of the methods he believes efficacious in bringing them about— training and conditioning aids. In Chapter 2, I drew attention to his *I do not mean to suggest that 'understanding' implies 'acting on.' If I did, Peters could say that understanding reasons and being disposed to behave are two different things. I am suggesting however, that i f a child understands reasons and acts on them, he i s learning to act i n accordance with, follow, or obey reason. This we might c a l l his "dis-positions to act on reason," but the child's understanding does not imply his disposition to act in this way. belief that conditioning procedures as well as conditioning aids (praise, blame, reward, punishment) "bypass" the human mind. These devices are non-cognitive ones, he says: they do not appeal (directly, at any rate) to a person's beliefs or reasoning a b i l i t i e s . Does he success-f u l l y reconcile 'habit' with these methods? How much room, i f any, does he allow for cognitive methods in the development of moral habits? 1. Habits as Actions Peters insists that 'habit' and 'reason' are compatible notions. "There i s no contradiction," he says, "between habituation and the intelligent adaptability associated with reason." Indeed, he considers i t one of his purposes to effect a rapprochement between those who stress habit and tradition, and those who stress c r i t i c a l thought and choice (RH269). Persons l i k e Ryle who find the notions 'habit' and 'reason' incompatible, Peters suggests, are either confused about the concept 'habit,' or concentrate on specific habits which get in the way of acting on reason. The concept 'habit' picks out persons' inclinations to carry out actions automatically. But not a l l actions carried out automatically are habits. A habit also implies the repetition of acts. Habits are "settled dispositions," and, " l i k e clothes, can be put on or taken of f . at w i l l . " To say someone has a habit i s to pick out things "he could, in principle, have reasons for doing and things, that, in principle (he) could, stop doing i f he t r i e d " (RH275). Dreaming, stomach aches and f a c i a l tics are not habits; nor i s 'being sympathetic' and 'being angry.' Going for a walk before breakfast, talking philosophy in a pub, and being punctual and polite, are Peters' primary examples of 125 habits (MD317). Peters compares 'acting habitually' (acting on habit) and 'acting out of habit' (acting from force of habit), which latter notion, he believes, jLs incompatible with reason. Moral habit-training, he believes, i s conceptually connected with the f i r s t sense of 'habit.' To say that someone acted 'out of habit' (from force of habit), Peters says, i s to say that the person "responded in a routine way to routine types of situations." The concept of 'intelligence' i s i n -applicable; the condition of automaticity, of a steroetyped form of behaviour i s strongly implied. This notion, he suggests, "rules out the po s s i b i l i t y that the individual has deliberated before he has done some-thing or that he has reflected or gone through a process of s e l f -criticism or j u s t i f i c a t i o n . " It also implies that the individual does not see what he does as a means to a further end. In using the phrase 'out of habit,' "we are denying any of the processes typically associ-ated with reason . . . at least a person acting out of habit was not acting for his reason" (MD320-1). The notion 'acting out of habit,' Peters continues, also rules out the notion of acting for i n t r i n s i c enjoyment -or acting from a sense of duty. A l l the notion claims is that "this i s the sort of thing the individual tends to do because he has done i t often before": To say that something i s a habit i s to say that i t i s the sort of behaviour that an individual could perform without giving his mind to i t , but to say that he performed i t out of habit is to suggest that he did not give his mind to i t . (MD321) This quotation does not clearly differentiate (i) acting habitu-a l l y (acting on habit) from ( i i ) acting out of habit. In fact, i t 126 serves only to confuse the reader. Consider Peters' proposition above that acting habitually suggests a person could perform the act "without giving his mind to i t " : this does not differentiate (i) from ( i i ) . By his previous comments, 'acting out of habit' implies that a person performs an act without giving his mind to i t , (that i s , does not do so) and that he could not do so, for the reason that "actions performed out of habit . . . deny the pos s i b i l i t y that any of the processes typically associated with reason have taken place." Peters, however, might mean this: acting out of habit i s a subclass of acting habitually. Acting habitually includes a l l actions which could be performed unmindfully. Thus a l l cases of acting out of habit are cases of acting habitually. But acting out of habit i s a special subclass of habitual actions, includ-ing only those actions that actually are performed unmindfully. Thus, not a l l cases of acting habitually are cases of acting out of habit. Those cases of acting habitually which are not also cases of acting out of habit are the ones Peters thinks are .^compatible with reason. In any case, Peters' attempt to distinguish between acting habit-ually and acting out of habit simply amounts to a claim that 'acting habitually' (acting on habit) i s compatible with the notion of acting for a reason, and that 'acting out of habit' i s not. F i r s t , i t i s not clear that acting out of habit "denies that any of the processes of reason have taken place." Second, "giving his mind to i t " — P e t e r s ' key phrase for distinguishing the two—does not do the job he intends for i t . In the next section on 'habituation,' we see that his understanding of 'habit' i s compatible with 'acting on or for a reason'; there does not seem to be any distinction between the two. 127 2. Habituation 'Habituation,' says Peters, refers to a wide class of learning processes: being instructed, getting used to, being in the presence of, insight and d r i l l . This, i t should be said, i s an odd beginning. In contrast to earlier statements i n which he said that conditioning aids and reinforcement must be used because habits must be formed, he now maintains that there are no grounds for saying that habits must be learned by repetition or d r i l l . He says, " i f a l l habits were associ-ated with d r i l l , the emergence of any rational type of morality out of processes of habituation would be a mystery" (MD323). Indeed, this i s precisely the d i f f i c u l t y one has had, from the outset, with his notion of habit-training. What process of habituation does he prefer, then, and for what reason? He asserts that habits can and should be formed in t e l l i g e n t l y "in the context of an a c t i v i t y . " We might d r i l l ourselves i n particular moves. We might engage in practice i n situations where the movements have to be varied in the lig h t of changes in the situation. To do this i s to "prevent a stereotyped pattern of movements from developing." What we want, he says, "are adaptable habits." Hence we must appeal to persons' intelligence by using reasons rather than means which depend on the laws of association:, contiguity, recency and frequency. Peters surely would l i k e to have i t both ways. He should either claim ( i f he truly believes t h i s ) , that habits should be developed in children by conditioning techniques because they cannot reason, or settle for the claim that settled dispositions to reason can and should be developed in children by means of reasoning (what he c a l l s "rational") 128 techniques. Not both. In other words, his persistent talk of habit-training i n terms of conditioning and a l l i e d "movement" terms (e.g., practice, d r i l l ) adds serious confusions to his account. Anyone who disbelieves that he places this much emphasis on "movement-terms" should consider this sentence: "Moral habits must be exhibited in a wide range of actions i n so far as actions are thought to be constituted by the sorts of movements of the body that are usually associated with s k i l l s . . . . " (RH277). This may be Peters' root confusion: a habit i s not a s k i l l , i t i s a propensity or inclination. Yet now we have to conclude after a l l that Peters believes children can learn to reason and act on reason at an early age. Why else would he advocate the giving of reasons as the best form of "habituation"? 3. Habits and Morality Peters emphasizes the importance of habits in morality in this way: Surely the importance of established habits i n the moral l i f e i s manifest. Life would be very exhausting i f , in moral situations, we always had to r e f l e c t , deliberate and make decisions . . . (we have to) count on a f a i r stock of habits . . . (ones such as punctuality, politeness, tidiness and honesty). (MD318) His "stock of habits" however, is limited to these. They are "connected with specific types of acts . . . so there seems to be no d i f f i c u l t y about the condition of automaticity being sometimes f u l -f i l l e d . " By 'automaticity' Peters probably intends the following: i n acting habitually the reason for acting i s not conscious to the person at the time he acts, but there may well be reason for acting as he does. Motives such as compassion, he says, cannot be habits. Neither can the " a r t i f i c i a l virtues" of justice and tolerance, for these virtues "involve much i n the way of thought . . . considerations are weighed and assessed." Nor can higher-order virtues such as courage, integrity and persistence be habits since they require "active attention" (MD319). The basic stock of moral habits (punctuality, tidiness, politeness and honesty), he says, are necessary but not sufficient for acting morally. They "have an incompleteness about them because the reason for behaving i n the ways which they mark out i s not internal to them." Some reason, he says, i s required for acting honestly. Honesty i s a character-trait, not a motive. Ideally, "acting honestly i s connected with considerations which provide a rationale, rather than considera-tions which are manifestly extrinsic to this form of behaviour." Peters says that habits are not sufficient for acting morally because "they cannot carry people through i n non-routine situations where the usual reinforcements are absent" (MD320). But i f , as he says, adaptable habits are best formed by a process of "habituation" i n which reason-giving i s a key feature, why would he worry about the insufficiency of habits to carry people through non-routine situations? Moreover, would he say that habits are sufficient for acting morally if_ the "usual reinforcements" (whatever these are) are present? 4. Peters on 'Habit' and Habits Peters' suggestion that some "settled dispositions" are necessary for.persons to be moral seems a reasonable one. He is. r i g h t to say that we cannot always deliberate about what we are to do before we act. We require settled dispositions of some kind to "carry" us through at least some "routine" situations and some "non-routine" situations. I have suggested, however, that Peters' analysis of 'habit' (one kind of 130 settled disposition), particularly his distinction between 'acting habitually' and 'acting out of habit,' i s not at a l l clear. Peters leaves unresolved at least two problems for the moral edu-cator. One is whether his advocacy of habit-training for the early moral education of children i s i n t e l l i g i b l e and consistent, given his analysis of the concept 'habit.' The second i s whether the habits he considers essential to being moral meet with our approval. Do they seem to us j u s t i f i a b l e habits to develop? Do we, too, think of the habits of punctuality, tidiness, politeness and honesty (e.g., not cheating and not lying) as moral requirements? (a) Children and moral habits ' It i s rather curious that Peters emphasizes the conditioning tech-niques essential to habit-training "because children cannot reason," and yet stresses the use of rational (reasoning) means so that children w i l l form "adaptable habits." It i s understandable, of course, why he picks out reasoning as a means for bringing about "settled dispositions" given his interpretation of 'habit.' But Peters, I suggest, cannot now main-tain his earlier claim that conditioning techniques must precede rational techniques in the inculcation of habits (FG153, see Ch. 3, p..87). From Peters' confusing and internally contradictory statements on habits, conditioning and reasoning, I draw together here what I believe i s his intent. We require some settled dispositions for acting morally, since we can't be bothered to (perhaps we are unable to) c a l l up reasons every time we act. Some settled dispositions (habits) give r i s e to "actions," since the notion of acting on reason does not rule out spontaneity, a feature of habitual action, nor does i t require the notion of delibera-tion, which i s absent in the case of habits. If there i s a good rationale for developing particular habits in children, we should do so. Since these settled dispositions are compatible with reason, and since i t may be desirous to have persons i n t e l l i g e n t l y r e f l e c t on what they do, moral educators must appeal to children's intelligence and employ rational, reason-giving means so that the "habits" formed are "adaptable" ones. Young children are not, i n their very youngest years, able to provide j u s t i f i c a t i o n s for a l l their actions; nor can they grasp a l l there is to grasp about the "v a l i d i t y " of rules. Moral educators (parents and teachers) then should couple rational means (appeal to c h i l -dren's intelligence) with praise, perhaps some punishment so as to keep children moving i n the direction of autonomous moral thought. One problem in moral education i s to determine which non-rational (non-cognitive) means should supplement the use of reason so that children are helped rather than hindered from reaching the stage of autonomy. This condensation and restatement of Peters' position i s worded so as to minimize the emphasis he gives to training and conditioning in moral habit-formation. My simplified wording brings out a point of view that I believe Peters holds but for some reason i s reluctant to admit. Children can understand reasons and learn to act on reason from ah early age. What they cannot do when very young i s provide j u s t i f i -cations for the rules, or see the " v a l i d i t y " (overall j u s t i f i c a t i o n ) of certain rules, although they can learn to apply rules i n the appropriate circumstances. The other tasks and a b i l i t i e s central to justifying rules must await children's further cognitive development. And this cognitive development is best brought about i n an atmosphere of honest discussion and cr i t i c i s m (rational give-and-take). (b) Are these habits necessary to morality? Peters believes there i s a rationale for promoting the habits of politeness, punctuality, tidiness and honesty (MD320).* But what are these reasons? Is Peters' rationale a good one? Except for a small discussion on the j u s t i f i c a t i o n of honesty (truth-telling), Peters does not debate how, in what ways these habits are required for or are pre-conditions of being moral; he simply states that they are necessary. He says l i t t l e about what forms of behaviour constitute such habits, so let us now test the correctness of his views by comparing them with our common-sense views. My suspicion i s that tidiness and punctuality have very l i t t l e to do with becoming autonomous moral agents. We can, with l i t t l e d i f f i -culty, think of counter-examples to Peters' claim—ones which f i t with our ordinary moral intuitions. Many of our own acquaintances who would be characterized as persons sensitive to others' rights and feelings and who are disposed to act so as to avoid suffering and prevent harm, are not particularly tidy or punctual. Often, as well, tidy and punctual persons i n our acquaintance and i n our history books (e.g., the Nazis) are quite immoral persons. Being tidy and being punctual r e f l e c t , i t is true, certain standards of behaviour. But that such standards are moral virtues i s certainly a disputable claim. Politeness i s more directly connected with a view of morality which has primarily to do with taking others' interests into account *See (Coombs, 1976, p. 25). 133 impartially with one's own. But here, too, there are d i f f i c u l t i e s . Peters does not conduct an analysis of 'politeness' and obviously sees no problem with his claim. A person who is consistently, or even occasionally impolite—who acts scornfully, ungraciously or rudely—draws our i r e . We would say, most l i k e l y , that he lacked character—moral character. The settled disposition of being polite, we might say, inclines a person towards viewing others as persons: politeness i s part of having respect for persons. As a general recommendation, the notion that we should be polite, or at least not impolite seems li k e a f a i r l y innocuous state-ment. But i f we admit that, as part of their moral character, persons should not be impolite to others, the question s t i l l remains what man-ners or forms of politeness are truly required, i f any are, for viewing and treating others as persons, caring about the consequences of acts and considering others' interests impartially. Some forms of politeness, "socially approved," or at least not so-c i a l l y disapproved, may actually serve to prevent or inhibit moral agents from viewing and treating others as persons (i.e., as beings with rights, claims, interests), and i t i s this fact which stands as a challenge to Peters' view. The custom, tradition or habit of opening doors for women, for example, would be viewed by most members of our society, including women, as an instance of politeness. But acting on this gesture might serve to perpetuate the myth that women are objects, that they are to be placed on a pedestal, that they are passive and dependent creatures. The door-opening gesture traditionally accom-panied views about how women should be treated: open doors for them but ignore their more serious, long-term interests, claims and rights. While i t would be d i f f i c u l t to maintain that acting in accordance with this habit entailed or meant that one ignored women's rights, there was, and s t i l l seems to be, a strong contingent connection between open-ing doors for women on the one hand, and ignoring their rights, on the other. I believe there i s sufficient doubt about this rule of polite-ness, at any rate, to make me suspect i t s requiredness for moral educa-tion. How many other examples of politeness f i t rather dubiously into the category of being moral required i s d i f f i c u l t to say. But the notion of "polite acts" as moral habits invites some examination—more than Peters provides. 1 Peters might have stressed instead the "settled disposition" of being courteous to other people. Obviously being courteous and being polite have much in common. But courteousness suggests a wider range of acts and slig h t l y different attitude toward people and customs than does politeness. Being courteous places more importance on the sub-ject, the receiver of the courtesies, the person to whom one i s cour-teous, than does being polite . As well, 'courtesy' suggests an a t t i -tude more adaptable to changing situations and. people. The remaining habit, honesty, presents questions of another kind. Without doubt, as moral educators we would l i k e children and adults to be honest rather than dishonest. We can more readily accept honesty, therefore, as a requirement or necessary feature of being moral. The problem which arises with this "virtue" i s whether i t makes any sense tc speak of being honest (Peters' examples are not cheating and not lying) as habit, even given Peters' reinterpretation of the concept 'habit.' Rarely, i f ever, would we speak of a person i n the following way: 'He's a fine chap, he has the habit of not lying,' or 'She i s i n the habit of not cheating, therefore she would make a good treasurer.' This point about language-use aside, can we make sense of the claim that not lying and not cheating are settled dispositions, carried out automatic-a l l y , with repetition? Now we might interpret the phrase 'not lying' i n several ways. We might say of a person that he has the habit of not lying and mean by this that he keeps quiet or that he t e l l s the truth. But i f a person keeps quiet, we would not necessarily say that he has a habit of not lying; he may not know the truth of a particular matter. And i f this person t e l l s the truth "automatically and with repetition," we might not always say that he has the habit of not lying. A person who told the truth a l l the time (as he saw i t ) would without doubt hurt others' feelings at least part of the time. We might not say he was acting immorally, but he would be engaging in morally hazardous actions. The notion 'not lying' in terms of t e l l i n g the truth seems to be based on the idea that there are standards of truth and that these are decipher-able to the person. In many cases this may be so, but with l i t t l e d i f -f i c u l t y we can think of instances when t e l l i n g the truth (being honest; not lying) i s a very d i f f i c u l t notion to get any handle on. Perhaps i t i s wrong to interpret the phrase 'a habit of not lying' as one of positive action: t e l l i n g the truth. It might be better analyzed as a "constant inhibition of any impulse to l i e which did happen to come up." But i f a person had impulses to l i e , even i f he did suppress them, would we say that his 'habit of not lying' was a virtue? In my view we would have less reason to say this was a virtue than to say that a person who "told the truth a l l the time" was not virtuous. In any case, Peters might have explicated what he means by a 'habit of not lying,' and he might have offered us some reasons why he thinks i t important to promote such a habit. What does he believe the consequences would be i f moral educators did not do what they could to habituate youngsters not to l i e ? In sum, Peters provides no convincing arguments, indeed no argu-ments at a l l for the particular habits of punctuality, tidiness and politeness as requirements or preconditions of acting morally. These "virtues" ref l e c t a set of standards Peters thinks desirable; others may not consider them so v i t a l or i n t e l l i g i b l e as settled dispositions or "habits." And some of these forms of behaviour or h a b i t s — f o r example, politeness—may i n fact prohibit or prevent individuals from seeing other individuals as persons. Why does Peters believe children should acquire habits? He sug-gests that children, because of their lowly level of conceptual develop-ment, cannot reason about what they are to do. This suggests that Peters believes that children cannot make discriminations, and cannot be mindful of possible consequences of their actions. If these are his reasons, then I must disagree with him. Such a disagreement de-pends for i t s resolution, not only on empirical research which might t e l l us what children are now capable of doing, but also depends on conceptions of what children could think, and do, i f parents and teachers would only, as i t were, give their minds to this task. 137 C. The Paradox of Moral Education In my summary of Peters' analysis of 'habit,' I might have included Peters' statements on the "paradox of moral education," since i t i s i n discussions of the paradox that Peters' treatment of 'habit' takes place. I have kept separate, however, the sections of 'habits' and "the paradox" as this latter "issue" is mildly puzzling. It i s not clear to me, i n fact, whether there is a "paradox," although there are some important issues. R. G. Oliver alleges that Peters presents not one, but four para-doxes of moral education: the.Basic Paradox, the S t u l t i f i c a t i o n Paradox, the Brute Facts Paradox, and the Conceptual Change Paradox (Oliver, 1978). I do not believe that Oliver establishes this many different versions in Peters; i t is useful, nevertheless, to read Peters with the Oliver argument in mind. Apparently, Peters was intrigued by Aristotle's suggestion that the things we have to learn to do, we learn by doing them: "just as men become builders by building, so men become honest by being honest." Peters, correctly or incorrectly concluded from this that habit-formation plays an important part in moral learning. But those habituated to being honest, he says, view the act of being honest i n a way different from the morally mature person. The paradox of moral education (like the paradox of a l l education), he says, i s th i s : "how can a rational level of morality emerge from a lowly level of habit-formation?" (RC33; RC71) . This question can be interpreted, of course, i n at least two ways. Peters might be questioning how i t is possible or conceivable that a 138 rational form of morality can emerge from habit-formation, that i s , how a child's moral concepts (e.g., honesty) change and develop as he grows up. Or Peters could be questioning what empirical means (e.g., teach-ing methods and/or non-rational methods) are efficacious i n getting a child to follow or obey rules, rather than just conform to them. In fact, Peters does speak of the "paradox" in both these ways: he ques-tions how a child's concepts might develop, and he asks what methods might be used to aid this development. I believe Peters sees these two questions to be l o g i c a l l y related to each other. I think he would say that i f one could answer the question 'how do a child's moral concepts change and develop?', one might then have some inside track on what means are efficacious i n bringing about that concept-change. His "methods" interpretations of the paradox are stated in the following ways: 1. "How can a basic content for morality be provided that gives children a firm basis for moral behaviour without impeding the development of a rational form of i t ? " (RC72). 2. "What non-rational methods of teaching aid, or at least do not impede, the development of rationality?" (RC72). 3. "The Problem of moral education i s that of how the necessary habits of behaviour and deep-rooted assumptions of the ' l i t e r a -ture' of various forms of good a c t i v i t i e s can be acquired i n a way which does not s t u l t i f y the development of a rational code or the mastery of the 'language' of a c t i v i t i e s at a later stage" (RH272). And his statements of the paradox i n terms of children's concep-tual a b i l i t i e s are put i n these ways: 1. "The brute facts of child development reveal that at the most formative years of a child's development he i s incapable of this form of l i f e and impervious to the proper manner of pass-ing i t on" (RH271). 2. "Through instruction, praise and blame, reward and punishment by men who are already courageous and just, (children) can acquire action patterns which gradually become informed by a growing understanding of what they are doing and why . . . how then can a morality . . . firmly rooted i n habit . . . provide the appropriate basis for a more rational reflective type of morality?" (MD316). Peters' "resolution" of the paradox i s less than satisfactory. He claims to have solved the "theoretical" paradox of moral education by reinterpreting 'habit' to show i t s compatibility with 'reason'—what Prof. Kazepides ca l l s a "conceptual diversion" (Kazepides, 1969, p. 179). But Peters doesn't address the more d i f f i c u l t and interesting problem of how a child's moral concepts change and develop. Nor does he give much attention to the question of what means l i k e l y bring about (at least do not hinder) the development of moral autonomy (rational morality). He speculates on which non-cognitive means (praise and reward or punish-ment) w i l l aid the development of rational morality and leaves the working out of this idea to empirical psychologists (EE274). But he v i r t u a l l y ignores the problem of how to reason with children i n ways they can understand and act on, so that their early response to reason w i l l develop later into more sophisticated reasoning. On the question of the use of non-rational (non-cognitive or "conditioning") means, Professor Coombs views the use of these means with some skepticism. The use of these techniques, he suggests, "puts (educators) in a very hazardous position with regard to the so-called paradox of moral education . . . i t may involve them i n the use of immoral means to promote the ends of moral education." Not that the use of non-cognitive means to teach persons to do what they have decided i s right " i s always immoral." But "the person who employs non-cognitive means bears the burden of proof. He must show that his 140 particular employment of non-cognitive means i s riot manipulative and thus not immoral." Coombs advocates that non-cognitive means be used "only i f i t i s true that cognitive teaching canriot be effective, and perhaps not even then" (Coombs, 1976, p. 25). Notice how Coombs' position differs from Peters' assertion that educators must employ non-cognitive means as preparatory to and as sup-plementary to the use of cognitive ones. Coombs does not discuss when he thinks non-cognitive means could be used to teach persons, that i s , when they would be acceptable methods, but he seems suspicious of these methods even when they are conjoined with cognitive means. Non-cognitive means, when used alone or with cognitive ones, may be manipu-lative and hence immoral. The worrisome part about both positions i s the assumption Peters and Coombs make that cognitive and non-cognitive means can be clearly distinguished from each other, an assumption which i s far from true. Peters sees some d i f f i c u l t y in this when he mentions giving reasons "with a right tone of voice," but develops this no further (PC256). In any case, presenting reasons to a child with an authoritative or threat-ening tone of voice, or presenting reasons with smiles and praise, or simply presenting reasons i n a friendly manner are methods both "cognitive" and "non-cognitive." These "mixed methods" are not at a l l rare; they are used far more often by parents and teachers than the "exclusive" use of either reasons or punishment/praise. It would be enormously d i f f i c u l t to t e l l whether such mixed methods are or are not manipulative, and even more d i f f i c u l t to t e l l whether they were immoral. For such mixed methods, at any rate, Coombs' suggestion about the "burden 141 of proof" seems appropriate for the reason-plus-threat example, especi-a l l y i f an adult has an enduring disposition to threaten the ch i l d , but his suggestion i s not a convincing one for the reason-plus-praise example. * * * * * * In Part I of this chapter, I have examined Peters' analysis of 'habit' and have found that he finds the concept compatible with 'reason.' The best way to habituate a child to behave i s to provide him with reasons for action. His analysis casts some doubt on reasons he has given for Inculcating habits in children: he has recommended that habits be developed because children cannot learn to reason at an early age. In those arguments, he strongly recommended the use of conditioning and reinforcement techniques because of his belief that children's concep-tual levels were not su f f i c i e n t l y well-developed for them to understand reasons. There is thus an inconsistency between Peters' recommendations that habits be developed i n children because they cannot reason, and his recommendations that habits be formed by the adult's use of reason-giving (rational) techniques. II. Motives In this section, I discuss Peters' contention that moral principles (and rules) should become ah agent's motives or motives, for action. We require answers to two questions before we have a clear account of what Peters intends: (1) What does the notion of a 'motive' mean for Peters? and (2) What does Peters' analysis of 'motive' contribute to our under-standing of moral motivation? A. Peters' Analysis of 'Motive' The term 'motive,' Peters says, does not do a different explan-atory job from the notion of 'his reason' or 'the reason why.' Rather, 'motive' marks off certain sorts of reasons from others. Motives "are a particular class of reasons, distinguished by certain logical prop-erties." Theories of motivation usually attempt causal interpretations of human behaviour without recognizing the lo g i c a l force of the term 'motive.' For this reason, Peters considers i t important to set out the necessary features (logical properties) of the concept. 1. Motives, Justifications and Explanations Peters considers, f i r s t , the contexts i n which i t i s appropriate to ask for a person's motives. We ask for a person's motives where the action i s a relatively important one, and where there seems to be a departure from conventional expectations, i . e . , i n those cases where the man's action seems to be out of character or i n those cases where his action seems not tp follow any standard rule-following, purposive pat-tern. Asking for a man's motive, he says, strengthens the suggestion that there was some point i n what the man did, although the man's pur-suit of his objective may be carried out according to no standard pat-tern of rules, and hence may not be clear to us (CM,29). When we ask for a man's motive, his conduct i s up for assessment: his actions have to be j u s t i f i e d , not simply explained. There i s a suggestion that a person's motive might be a discreditable one. We enquire of a man's motives, Peters says, when we are a l i t t l e suspicious of the man's point or purpose in doing what he did. Against Peters, Browne argues that i t i s wrong to say that we only 143 ask for a man's motives where there i s a question of assessing his con-duct—where we want j u s t i f i c a t i o n of the man's actions. Browne argues that we can appropriately ask for a man's motives i n those cases where there is not a question of j u s t i f i c a t i o n , but only a question of explan-ation: i n those cases where the answer to the question 'What was the man's motive i n doing Y?' serves to "dispel some mystery" (e.g., What was the man's motive i n giving up his legal practice just when he was becoming successful? or What was his motive i n making that odd bequest in his w i l l ? ) . In cases such as these, Browne argues, the actions appear to stand i n need of explanation—they may point to unusual events—but this does not imply that the actions c a l l for j u s t i f i c a t i o n . The notion of ' j u s t i f i c a t i o n , ' he reminds us, "suggests there i s some reason to sup-pose that the action was done for some socially unacceptable reason," and this i s only one context i n which i t i s appropriate to ask for a man's motive. The word 'motive' i s appropriately used, Browne i n s i s t s , when we wish to (1) j u s t i f y or excuse an action, (2) discredit an action, (3) mitigate an agent's guil t i n performing an action, (4) praise the action, or (5) explain an action, without assessing i t i n any way (Browne, p. 35ff.). Browne's objections to Peters' account are well put. Actually, Peters' comments on 'motives'—written some ten and twelve years after his i n i t i a l work—suggest a change of heart. But he overstates his case in the other direction. He writes that "we only talk about motives in certain contexts .. . . when we are demanding explanations of actions . . . we do not ask for motives for feeling cold, indigestion, or mystical visions" (ME109; EEml77; i t a l i c s mine). My own view i s that we most often ask for a man's motive when we suspect that a person has done something so c i a l l y unacceptable—when we feel that what the man has done stands i n need of some j u s t i f i c a t i o n . Now as a result of asking or searching for a man's motive, we may in fact, receive answers which serve to j u s t i f y , excuse, discredit, praise, or explain a man's action. But i n asking for a man's motive, I believe we most often expect that the action w i l l be j u s t i f i e d . In those cases Browne selects ('What was the man's motive i n giving up his legal prac-tice just when he was becoming successful?' and 'What was his motive i n making that odd bequest i n his w i l l ? ' ) , we would ordinarily employ the word 'reason' i n place of 'motive,'I suggest, i f we did not anticipate that the man did something so c i a l l y unacceptable. Further, we would use the term 'motive' i n those situations where we did anticipate that he did something socially unacceptable. Browne's argument, then, does not quite f i t with my understanding of the contexts i n which i t i s appropriate to ask for a man's motives although I grant that we often ask for a motive i n situations which require some explanation. Browne's main point, however, i s that the concept of 'motive' i s essentially explanatory. The question of when we typically ask about motives i s not part of his analysis of the concept, but rather concerns the occa-sions on which i t i s natural to want an explanation of a particular type. Knowing why a person in fact did something i s often central i n determin-ing whether he was, from his point of view, j u s t i f i e d . Browne i s correct, I believe, to concur with Peters that we normally ask for a man's motive when the action i s a relatively important and when we wish to determine the reason or set of reasons why the one, 145 man acted as he d i d . He i s a l s o c o r r e c t to say , a long wi th P e t e r s , that the no t ion of a 'mot ive ' loses force i f we asser t that we have motives for everyth ing we do (CM,27). The term i s only a p p r o p r i a t e l y used w i th respect to c e r t a i n i n t e n t i o n a l a c t i o n s . 2. Motives as a S p e c i a l Class of Reasons M o t i v e s , a s ser t s P e t e r s , are reasons "of a d i r e c t e d s o r t . " To say of a man that he acted f o r c e r t a i n motives i s to say that h i s a c t i o n was d i r e c t e d towards some goal or end. The f o l l o w i n g l o c u t i o n s prov ide us wi th some c lues that the man acted for c e r t a i n mot ives , that h i s ac t ions were d i r e c t e d towards some goal or end: 'He acted f o r the sake  of . . . , ' 'He acted i n order to . . . , ' 'He acted for the purpose of . . . ' But not a l l reasons of a d i r e c t e d s o r t can be c a l l e d mot ives . For even though a c t i n g on h a b i t and a c t i n g because of c e r t a i n c h a r a c t e r -t r a i t s suggest ' d i r e c t e d n e s s 1 (and i n the case of h a b i t s , a s tereotyped d i r e c t e d n e s s ) , these a c t i o n s do not imply d irec tedness towards what Peters c a l l s p a r t i c u l a r goals or ends. Ne i ther are a l l reasons for a c t i o n mot ives , Peters suggests . We of ten do th ings f o r t h e i r i n t r i n -s i c i n t e r e s t , or because a c e r t a i n mood overtakes us . Whereas i t seems proper f o r us to say i n these circumstances that we act f o r c e r t a i n reasons, i t would be i n a p p r o p r i a t e to l a b e l these reasons mot ives . Motives are "operat ive reasons"—the reasons which a c t u a l l y move us to act i n a d i r e c t e d fa sh ion towards c e r t a i n goals or ends. In c o n t r a s t i n g a c t i n g f o r c e r t a i n mot ives , w i th a c t i n g because of c e r t a i n c h a r a c t e r - t r a i t s , Peters i s r i g h t to say that h i s account d i f f e r s from R y l e ' s account of motives (Ryle , 1957). Ry le c la ims that motives imply the d i rec tedness of a c t i o n s "of a d i s p o s i t i o n a l s o r t " (CM,33). 146 But i t makes sense, Peters argues, to say that a person acted from a certain motive, yet acting from this motive i s not sufficient evidence of the person's tendency or disposition to act similarly under similar circumstances or antecedent conditions. Browne, too, takes Ryle to task for saying that to explain an action by assigning a motive i s to explain the action by bringing i t under the law-like hypothetical proposition that the agent i s a man who tends to do the sort of thing the motive indicates: that the man's motive i s the sort of thing the man would do i n similar circumstances. Like Peters, Browne correctly argues that i t makes sense to say that a man can act from a motive on one occasion only without this necessarily being evidence of a disposition to act i n this way. In other words, a man can act out of vanity, generosity, revenge or kindness without being a vain, generous, vengeful or kind man (Browne, op. c i t . , 41ff.). We expect a vain man, however, to act out of (the motive) vanity at least some of the time, a generous man to act with generosity, a kind man to act kindly. Otherwise we would not ascribe character-traits to people i n the way that we do. In short, certain character-traits imply acting for motives con-sistent with those t r a i t s , but acting with certain motives does not necessarily imply having those particular t r a i t s of character. Peters points out Kohlberg's failure to distinguish between t r a i t s and motives (MD313). Nowell-Smith, i t seems,, i s another who does not make this distinction: he uses the term ' t r a i t s ' and 'motives' inter-changeably (Nowell-Smith, 1954, p. 22ff.). Without singling out Peters' argument, Browne presents some objec-tions to the notion that motives are reasons directed towards certain 147 goals or ends. Browne presents what might be called a taxonomy of "intentional actions": (1) actions performed for their own sake, (2) actions performed for no particular purpose (actions performed because of certain dispositions, moods, emotions, or habits), (3) actions performed as a means to some further end to be achieved by the actions, and (4) actions performed in order to do or secure some-thing that is not a further end. His example of a category (3) action i s a man who married a woman in order to get her money; an example of a category (4) action i s a man k i l l i n g another for revenge. Categories (3) and (4) are the only actions, Browne suggests, where we can properly speak of motives for action. The "end" or "goal" of a category (4) action i s the action i t s e l f , or, as Browne puts i t , "Revenge i s the man's motive in k i l l i n g another man . . . revenge i s not some further end to be achieved by the k i l l i n g of the man" (Browne, p. 58). Alston makes somewhat the same point when he says that in specify-ing what motivated a person, "we are not necessarily specifying any goal he was seeking to achieve or any further purpose in the interest of which he did what he did . . . the end of the action . . . i s something which exists, i f at a l l , at the same time as A and is simply another aspect of the 'piece of behaviour' of which doing A i s one aspect" (Alston, 1976b, p. 400). Browne's and Alston's remarks are salutary bits of advice for Peters. Although Peters claims that the "ends" of the action must not be construed "merely as terminating points of a c t i v i t y " but as "caught up," i n a sense, i n the action i t s e l f (CM,6), he often forgets his own remark and speaks of the ends and goals of actions as i f they were 148 further to the action i t s e l f . And his frequent use of the phrase 'means and ends' suggests that he likes to see the term 'motive' used only where there is some further end i n terms of which the action i s performed (CM,45). 3. Motives and Reason Why Explanations Peters contends that i f we are to explain a man's actions by refer-ence to his motives, and i f these motives "are tied, l o g i c a l l y , to the goal or end i n terms of which he directs his behaviour," the goal spec-i f i c a t i o n i s explanatory of what the man has done. When we offer 'reason why' explanations of persons' behaviour, there are many kinds of explanation open to us: we can say .that a man acted as he did because he was subject to happenings (e.g., he had a brain tumour), or because he acted habitually, or because he was in a certain mood, or because he acted for certain reasons. In order to specify a man's motives, we must get at the real reasons for his action. The reasons why he acted as he did may or may not coincide with his (alleged) reasons. Peters seems not to have noticed that to speak of a man's real reasons for acting may not always be to speak of what motives led him to act as he did. His real reasons for acting may have been because he was subject to happenings, or that he was i n a certain mood, or (to use an example from Freud) that he had a mother-complex. In any case, to determine what were a man's real reasons (motives), Peters reminds us that we must not be content simply to ask the man what his motives were. For a man may adduce various motives for a c t i n g — motives which were not the real reasons. I w i l l not be concerned here with the problem of determining what a man's real reasons are for doing what he does. Nor i s this the place to develop my belief that a man's stated reasons are f a i r l y reliable evidence of his real reasons. Suf-f i c e i t to say that in correctly assigning a motive or motives to a person, we are faced with the task of determining which reasons were the operative ones for him—the reasons which were responsible for his acting in the way that he did. In determining what are a person?s operative reasons, we would probably also consider why, this reason or set of reasons has been oper-ative for him. What set of conditions or beliefs has led the man to act on these reasons and not on others? In answering this question, Peters writes, we must resist the temptation to say that a man's oper-ative reasons were the ones that caused him to perform the action. We should look at Peters' reasons for saying this, but before doing that, i t i s appropriate to discuss b r i e f l y what Browne, Alston, Davidson and Abelson take to be features of "operative reasons" and to make some com-parisons with Peters. Browne argues that to explain an action by giving the agent's motive i s to explain the action by reference to the agent's reasons for action. This means explaining the action " i n terms of the agent's desires and information" (Browne, p. 60). He claims that his analysis i s in p a r t i a l agreement with that of Ryle, whose notion of a reason for action, or motive, entails that the agent has certain desires, and that he has certain related information. As a contrast to Ryle, however, Browne suggests that 'the agent's desires' can be further analyzed in terms of either 'the agent's intention' or 'the agent's desire to . . .' As Browne puts i t , "when we explain an agent's action by giving his 150 motive . . . we are explaining that action i n terms of the agent's reasons for action; and we do this by either reporting his intention or by reporting some desire of h i s . " That i s , the agent's motive i s always given i n , or reducible to, one of the forms 'He did i t to 0,' or 'He did i t out of a desire to 0. ' These are the factors that moved him to act i n the way that he did . . . that were responsible for his action. The agent's reason . . . i s of a special kind, namely a reason of the agent's that indicates the objective or goal aimed at. (Browne, pp. 70-72) Davidson's notion of a "primary reason" i s similar to Browne's 'motive-explanation.' whenever someone does something for a reason Davidson writes, "he can be characterized as (a) having some sort of pro attitude toward actions of a certain kind, and (b) believing (or knowing, perceiving, noticing or remembering) that his action i s of that kind." The "pro attitude" in (a) can be his desires, wantings, urges, promptings or a variety of moral views, aesthetic principles, economic prejudices, social conventions, or public and private goals and values " i n so far as these can be interpreted as attitudes of an agent directed toward actions of a certain kind." These "attitudes," he says, are not necessarily convictions that these actions ought to be performed; they can be permanent character t r a i t s or a passing fancy that prompts to action. In our statement of an agent's primary reason for acting, we can include the pro attitude or the related belief or both, Davidson says, "although i t i s generally otiose to mention both" (Davidson, 1963). Davidson's explication of a primary reason roughly parallels Browne's notion of a motive: Davidson's notion of a "pro attitude" i s similar to Browne's "desires," and his notion of a "related belief" i s similar to Browne's "related information." Alston suggests that to give a motivational explanation of an action is to relate i t in some way to a "desire" or "want." The problem of the nature of motivation, he continues " i s the problem of determining how a want can give rise to an action." Alston points out the d i f f i -culty of analyzing such wants in Rylean terms, that i s , in terms of behavioural dispositions to act i n certain ways under certain antecedent conditions: "the dispositional account . . . of wants as dispositions . . . w i l l be enormously, perhaps i n f i n i t e l y complicated." But more important than the issue of complexity, he says, i s the fact that with respect to any one action A, "the desire for x w i l l necessarily give i r i s e to A, i n appropriate circumstances . . . only on the assumption of further conditions which are either not formulable in terms of publicly observable facts, or are indefinitely complex or both" (Alston, 1967b, p. 408). As an alternative to the behavioural disposition theory of wants, Alston presents the following; "wants give r i s e to actions," he says, "by virtue of the fact that i t i s a lawful generalization that given a desire for S and a belief that doing A i s (or w i l l lead to) bringing about S, there w i l l be a tendency to do A, whether or not the agent actually does A being further dependent on what other action tendencies simultaneously exist, as well as on whether factors preventing any action at a l l are present." He wants his analysis to rest on some middle ground between the view that the motive or operative reason necessarily gives rise to some, action, and the view that there may be factors which intervene between desiring the action and actually carry-ing i t out. 152 A view similar to Alston's i s put forward by Abelson i n his attempt to c l a r i f y what i t means to say there i s a " l o g i c a l bond" between motives and action. He says that " i t i s just plain s i l l y " to say that this l o g i c a l bond must be the relation of unrestricted entailment—that a motive for doing A must entail that the agent actually does A." The "true bond," according to Abelson, " i s that of contextually limited entailment between motive and act." Assume, he says, that Jones wants, intends, desires or in some sense has a motive to do something. "What does this e n t a i l about what he w i l l do?" It entails that he w i l l do the action "provided no reason arises for his not doing so and provided nothing prevents him." He concludes that "a motive is indeed logically connected, to an action, and not just through the way that i t happens to be described, and not just to the concept of the action, but to i t s actual performance" (Abelson, p. 40). This amounts, I believe, to the assertion that a man w i l l do what he has reason to do unless he has any reasons to the contrary. Peters does not analyze these issues i n the Davidson/Browne or Abelson styles; he merely states that there i s a log i c a l connection between motives and "doing" (EEml77; ME109).. He makes an attempt to decipher the connection between 'motives' and 'wanting.' He says that we must understand the concept 'motive' to be conceptually connected with the notion of 'wanting,' not with 'wishing,' since 'wanting' implies "determinate ends" while wishing does not (ME112; CM63). Other than this, he offers no substantive remarks. 4. Motives as Causes Peters says that he understands why some persons speak of a per-son' s operative reasons (motives) i n terms of causes. There i s , he admits, some connection between the directedness of an action and "some inner springs" i n the individual. Motives or operative reasons seem to act like "emotively charged reasons": the directedness of the action "appears to be set off by an emotional state." But to i n s i s t on a neces-sary connection between motives and emotional states which may give r i s e to motives, and to say this connection i s a causal one, " i s to confuse what is a logical point about motives with the postulations of antecedent states of emotion which i n i t i a t e s the directed behaviour" (CM,37). Psychologists concentrating on "drives" and "reaction tendencies" have frequently committed the error of supposing that motives are equivalent to these kinds of goal-directedness. Motives " l i e somewhere between reasons and cause," Peters suggests. "They refer to the goal towards which behaviour i s directed but also to emotional states which set i t off." And for many motives, of course, i t i s not obvious that an emotion-state in i t i a t e d the directed action. In these passages and in those previously quoted, Peters hesitates to c a l l the reasons which get a person to act, the causes of the person's action. In this he differs from Wilson, who claims without hesitation and without analysis, that reasons cause actions (Wilson, 1972). Browne's conclusion that desires (hence reasons and motives), cannot be causes i s based on a much more so l i d analysis than Abelson's. Browne and Abelson, however, both share Peters' reluctance concerning this particular designation of the term "cause." Davidson, by contrast, argues that because we talk of reasons as primary or operative ones— those reasons which move a person to act—we should, i n consistency, see these reasons as the causes of actions. Clearly, Davidson interprets the notion of "cause" much more broadly than does Peters, who prefers to re s t r i c t the term to discussions of "mechanistic" or "physicalist" prin-ciples: principles which might be explanatory of, for example, neurons f i r i n g i n the brain. It i s understandable why Peters would not want to analyze "reasons for acting" or "motives" i n terms of causes, since his entire anti-behaviouristic program was geared to finding some alternative to the causal (mechanistic) account of human behaviour. But we know that he must believe reasons to be efficacious, in some sense, i n the bringing about of certain behaviour; otherwise his writing on action and reasons for action would be unintelligible. Our belief that reasons are responsible i n some sense for actions should not lead us to conclude that reasons can be causes. But i t should lead us to regard Peters' statements that reasons and motives cannot be causes as conjecture since he doesn't seriously consider any alternative account of "cause." In summary, Peters' analysis of the concept 'motive' stands up reasonably well. The features he selects as characteristic of 'motive' are quite sound. 'Motive' i s used i n contexts where conduct i s being assessed, and where there i s a breakdown i n conventional expectations. The term i s used to refer to a reason of a directed sort. And i t states the reason why a person acts, a reason that i s operative in the situation to be explained. The motive may coincide with a person's stated reason for acting, but i t must be the reason why he acts. 155 On the other hand, Peters' analysis of 'motive' displays a certain sloppiness i n his treatment of the goal or end towards which the moti-vated behaviour i s directed. He pays l i t t l e attention to the conditions (beliefs of the agent) which make a reason an operative one, and he only glances at the claim that reasons are the causes of actions. B. Peters' Account of Moral Motivation Having answered the f i r s t question raised at the beginning of this section, namely, 'What does the notion of a "motive" mean for Peters?', I now turn to the second one: 'What does Peters' analysis of "motive" contribute to our understanding of moral motivation?' 1. Moral Motives Writing on his "aspects (facets) of the moral l i f e , " Peters repeatedly points to the importance of developing the right motives. He takes his cue from Hume who said that there must be "some motive to pro-duce right actions, as distinct from a sense of the action's morality" (RC20,99; ML377). Peters refers to the development of desirable motives as an "important level of l i f e " (RC91). He also c a l l s desirable, motives "goals of l i f e , " goals which "point to purposes not confined to particular a c t i v i t i e s or roles" (RC17; CP289,300). His examples of motives i n the moral l i f e are a curious l o t : ambition, benevolence, envy, jealousy, greed, love and respect (RC17,23,28). This l i s t includes examples of "vices" and "virtues" and motives l i k e ambition which are not easily c l a s s i f i a b l e as either. He surely intends only virtuous motives to be necessary to being moral. I suggest, therefore, that we view his l i s t simply as examples of motives, rather than as examples of motives necessary to the moral l i f e . 156 The motives or principles of benevolence, respect for persons and justice, Peters believes, must "become operative" i n a person's l i f e . These motives he calls "rational passions"; they derive from non-neutral appraisals of a situation. These principles (motives) must become a person's own; they must actually "move him to act" (CP295). 2. Appraisals Let us look more closely at this "non-neutral appraisal" of which Peters speaks. There are two.reasons for doing so: to see i f Peters' . notion of an appraisal contributes to his explication of an "operative reason," and to see what distinction Peters makes between motives and emotions, which latter topic i s the subject of discussion in the 'conclud-ing section of this chapter. Motives and emotions, Peters says, "relate to our feelings and are intimately related to our cognition—our ways of understanding situa-tions." The feeling i s inseparable from the cognition, he says. What this means i s that "we could not identify such feelings without reference to the understanding of the situations which evoke them" (LE49; RC80). The feeling aspect of these states of mind pick out features which are of importance to us (RC80,87; ME110; LE49; RP162). There i s , he says, "a movement of the mind towards or away from the object or situation i n respect of the way i n which i t i s characterized" (EE112). These fea-tures "are sources of pain and pleasure, harm and benefit." He c a l l s these feeling/cognition states "appraisals," or fre-quently "non-neutral appraisals." He says that he would have used the term 'judgment' instead of 'appraisal,' i f i t had merely been a matter of judging devoid of the feeling aspect (LE49). 157 Motives, he believes, derive from "non-neutral appraisals" and are intimately connected with what we do. This does not mean that the per-son who acts for particular motives " i s necessarily subject to strong feelings or i s i n a turbulent state." But there must be something in common, he suggests, "between being moved to act and being subject to feelings" (RP157). When a person acts out of envy or jealousy, "his non-neutral thoughts about someone having something that he wants become connected with a variety of action patterns, the purpose of which is to remedy the situation i n some way" (RC80). Emotions, likewise, "derive from non-neutral appraisals." When these thoughts are connected with "things that come over a man, which may get him into a state or affect his perception, judgment and mariner of acting," we speak of this man as being subject to or assailed by (a particular) emotion. Emotions, Peters says, "are passive phenomena" (ECPj EPss; RC80,87; EEm; EE110). A person i s subject t o — t h a t i s passive in the face o f — t h e emotion jealousy ot the emotion envy i f he sees situations i n a certain light without doing anything about these feelings. In addition to motives and emotions, Peters continues, there are appraisals not connected with things that we do or with things that come over us: "there are appraisals that function as motives and as emotions . . . which do not necessarily lead to action or even tendencies to action" (ME112). In the case of remorse or regret, he says, "we simply view a situation under the aspect, connected with the appraisal" (ME110). 158 3. Educating the Motives It makes sense, he says, to speak of educating the motives and the emotions because of their "intimate relation to cognition" (EE32; EI93). Although motive/appraisals and emotion/appraisals can be, and often are, irrational or unreasonable, both can be influenced by or controlled by reason (RC84ff.). That i s , we can make and can learn to make approp- riate appraisals about persons and situations. He offers l i t t l e meat, however, on what are appropriate appraisals for the various motives and emotions, claiming only that learning to make appropriate appraisals i s a necessary part of one's moral education. Peters' writing on "appraisals," as i t stands, i s rela t i v e l y uncontroversial. He i s correct to say that both motives and emotions are based on forms of cognition—on beliefs. These beliefs reflect what i s of importance to the believer; hence the beliefs are often accompanied by heightened feelings. Peters' views here are surely an advance over those which display ignorance of the belief or cognitive element of both motives and emotions. He objects to those empirical studies of the emotions which interpret emotions solely i n terms of the fac i a l expressions or changes i n the autonomic nervous system that f r e -quently accompany "emotional reactions." Peters correctly reminds us that a man who acts out of jealousy acts because of his belief that someone i s taking l i b e r t i e s with another to whom he thinks he has a special relationship, and that a man who acts out of envy acts because of his belief that someone has something to which he feels he i s . entitled. 1 5 9 4. Moral Motives and Moral Motivation The reader who searches through Peters' writing for comment on the "motive/appraisals" peculiar to the moral motives of respect, benevolence and justice w i l l come up with l i t t l e . Peters offers next to no analysis of the beliefs the moral agent must have, or the feelings which should accompany these beliefs in order that moral concerns are, for the agent, genuinely motivating. As I have said i n Chapter 3 (pp. 93ff.), Peters believes the development of the imagination i s important i n furthering the motives of compassion and concern for others, but he conducts no analysis of imag-ination and presents only a few leads for educators wishing to develop this a b i l i t y in others. If this "imaginative a b i l i t y " can be roughly translated into perceiving what the effects of one's actions on others w i l l be, such perception (imaginative a b i l i t y ) i s no doubt necessary but not sufficient for an agent to be motivated by moral concerns. One must be disposed as well to act on the information one has about other persons-—the information gained via the imaginative enterprise (percep-tion) . As many have said, including Peters, perceiving the effects of one's actions on another does not necessarily result i n moral concern for others. Put into the language of "wanting" and "desires" in terms of which Browne, Alston, Davidson, and Abelson write, and about which Peters makes a few remarks, the agent who i s motivated by moral concerns must want that others' wants or desires (interests) be f u l f i l l e d , at least not impeded, as much as he wants his own wants or desires to be f u l f i l l e d or at least not impeded. And he must act on those wants. Again, in the parlance of many moral educators l i k e Wilson, an agent, to 160 be moral must be committed to considering others' interests impartially with his own. This commitment must be "borne out" i n action. On some occasions, indeed i n many, such a commitment may require the agent to put aside his own wants or interests so that others' pursuit of their wants w i l l not be impeded. To be motivated by moral concerns, then, the agent must view others as the same, i n some sense, as himself; a commitment to equality seems basic to being moral. But what is this "viewing" of others as the same as oneself? And how i s an acknowledgement that others are i n some sense the same as oneself of motivating interest to the moral agent? Much of what Peters and others have said bears repeating here. As an empirical statement, the notion that we are " a l l the same" can be easily disconfirmed (Williams, 1969; Komisar & Coombs, 1964). The similarity the moral agent sees between himself and others, presumably, is based on other grounds, on features of himself and others which have some normative or moral claim, for example that the agent and these others a l l have rights. These morally relevant c r i t e r i a provide the deliberating moral agent with grounds—reasons—for acting towards other human beings i n certain ways and not i n others. Nagel suggests that for an agent to see a reason as a reason for action " i s to see that reason as possessing motivational content." For an agent "to be led by certain reasons . . . is to accept those reasons as a j u s t i f i c a t i o n for doing or wanting that which i t i s judged one should do or want" (Nagel, p. 65). But motivational content, Nagel writes, i s not motivational e f f i -cacy. It i s an undeniable fact, he says, "that someone may acknowledge 161 a reason for action and f a i l to act." There are many ways "the effects of a reason" may be blocked. F i r s t , a reason for acting may be blocked by a countervailing reason or reasons; in this case we c a l l the f i r s t reason for acting a prima facie reason. The countervailing reasons hold the motivational content. But these countervailing or sufficient reasons for action, although possessing motivational content, may not have motivational efficacy for the agent. The agent may only be paying l i p service to the view that these reasons are reasons for him. And there may be other causes of the failure to act on sufficient reason. "Weakness of the w i l l , coward-ice, laziness, panic are a l l failures of this type, and each represents a subtle variety of motivational interference." But the fact that approp-riate action or desire may be prevented i n these ways, Nagel says, "does not cast doubt on the claim that a judgment of practical reason does possess motivational weight." Nagel then formulates a "description of the motivational component" of reasons for action: The belief that a reason provides me with sufficient j u s t i f i c a -tion for a present course of action does not necessarily imply a desire or a willingness to undertake that action; i t i s not a sufficient condition of the act or desire. But i t i s s u f f i c -ient, in the absence of contrary influences, to explain the appropriate action, or the desire or willingness to perform i t . (Nagel, p. 67) In assembling Peters' thoughts on the motivational content and the motivational efficacy of reasons for action, we do not find an account which differs substantially from this portion of Nagel's account. Nevertheless, i t i s clear that Nagel addresses the question of motivation more directly than does Peters, whose account i s quite scattered and hence loses much of i t s force. Peters speaks, rather vaguely, as 1 have 162 said, of a "logi c a l connection" between motives and action: he too under-stands that reasons serve as motives of agents' actions. He realizes as well that many factors can and do prevent the agent from acting on what he may believe to be a j u s t i f i a b l e reason for acting. In the next chapter, in fact, we w i l l look at Peters' contention that 'virtues of the w i l l ' are necessary to get the agent to carry out i n practice what he has deemed to be a course of action supported by good reason. Peters devotes no attention at a l l to the question whether moral rules and principles can or cannot be motivations for acting; he simply assumes they can be. As well, he might have c l a r i f i e d his understanding of moral motivation by considering the sense i n which moral principles have the "directedness" he thinks i s characteristic of motives. We may already safely conclude that Peters gives inadequate atten-tion to the notion of a prima facie reason for action and sufficient (countervailing) reasons for action. Recall here the c r i t i c a l remarks we made in Chapter 3: there we revealed Peters' failure to deal ade-quately with the notion of "conflict of principle," and his attendant failure to explore the notion of j u s t i f y i n g decisions made when two principles (reasons) conf l i c t . * * * * * * In Part II of this chapter, I have looked at Peters' analysis of a motive i n order to see what light i t sheds on his notion of moral moti-vation. Although there does not seem to be any inconsistency between his earlier work on 'motives' and his later work on 'moral motives,' he does not draw on his own earlier work to make clear what he means when 163 he talks of moral motivation. Of those three features of a 'motive' which he set out: motives as operative reasons, motives as directed towards goals, and motives as explanations and j u s t i f i c a t i o n s , i t i s the second feature—the goal-directedness—which stands in need of reinterpretation for the notion of moral motives. For i t i s not clear what Peters would mean i f he said that persons who act for moral motives have directed their actions towards certain goals. And i t i s not clear how this "directedness" differs from the "directedness" suggested by 'acting habitually.' III. Emotions In Chapter 2, I pointed to a d i f f i c u l t y i n Peters' account of morality concerning the interplay between reason and feeling. As I mentioned there, Peters periodically interprets 'reason' in morals i n the way Hume did: reason can discover what i s true or false, but reason ("by i t s e l f " ) cannot "move one to act. At the same time, he asserts that "we must abandon the contrast between reason as an inert capacity and passions which move us to act" (RP160; EE314). He frequently says that the a b i l i t y to reason about moral matters must be "supplemented" by an a b i l i t y to experience compassion or concern for others. But section II of this chapter showed that Peters does believe moral reasoning can move one to act: i f reasons become a person' motives, i f reasons "become personalized, become one's own," then reason w i l l lead to action i n accordance with those reasons. This "lead to" does not mean an entailment between having particular motives and acting on them; Peters admits that there may be interfering factors between ' 164 having a motive and acting on that motive. But he does speak of a "close conceptual connection" between motives and "doing." One gathers, then, that on Peters' account, i f an agent i s motivated to do certain things, he w i l l in fact do those things barring any tendencies (e.g., reasons) against doing them. To reason i n morals, then, i s to be "moved" by certain considerations: the considerations of harm and benefit to other persons. Peters expects that his notion of a motive-appraisal w i l l capture the double-sided notion of being aware of and caring about those circumstances in which others are harmed and helped. He there-fore insists that fostering i n others the motive-appraisals of benev-olence, respect and justice i s an important part, perhaps the most important part of a person's moral education. In this last section, I f i l l out Peters' picture of the conceptual connection he sees between 'reason' and 'feeling' by attending to his treatment of the emotions and their "place" i n the moral l i f e . To c l a r i f y his understanding of the concept 'emotion,' I add some details to the account of emotion-appraisals begun in the previous section, then assess Peters' remarks on the importance of such emotion-appraisals to moral judgment and action. A. Emotion-appraisals Fear and anger, Peters writes, are the emotions which have drawn the most attention from behavioural researchers (B63; EEm; ME109). No doubt this i s because these emotions, more than some others, are accom-panied by noticeable changes i n "visceral reactions" and changes in the autonomic nervous system. There are, of course, many more emotions which invite examination: joy, sorrow, jealousy, envy, pride, wonder, shame, guilt and remorse. These emotions, as well as fear and anger, "consist i n seeing situations under aspects that are agreeable or dis-agreeable, beneficial or harmful i n a variety of dimensions." There i s , says Peters, a connection between emotions and a class of cognitions called 'appraisals': Fear i s conceptually connected with seeing a situation as dangerous, envy with seeing i t as thwarting, pride with seeing something as ours or as something that we have had a hand i n bringing about. (ME105; EE32) For the various emotions, "something comes over people or happens to them when they consider a situation in a certain kind of lig h t " ; Peters' term for this is "passivity." There is no conceptual connec-tion, Peters maintains, between emotion and action. But i f an agent sees something i n a certain light and i t becomes connected with what he does, the appraisal becomes a motive-appraisal. There can also be a strong de facto connection between emotions and action: emotions can "disrupt, heighten and intensify motor performances." Emotions, he maintains, can affect the manner in which a person acts, rather than his reason or motive for so acting.. The person's manner of acting " i s affected by the person's consideration of aspects of the situation." A person's emotions, in other words, "can speed a person on his way or can deflect him from his path." Such appraisals can function, then, as motives and emotions at the same time. In addition, there can be and often i s , a de facto relationship between perception, memory and judgment on the one hand and emotion on the other. In such cases, Peters writes, the emotion-appraisal "acts on the person so as to cloud or distort, or heighten or sharpen the 166 assessment that he is making." The appraisal "takes the attention away from or clouds over the relevant features of the situation," 'relevance' here being defined in terms of "whatever c r i t e r i a are involved i n the type of judgment that i s being made." The emotion can as well "go along with the c r i t e r i a of relevance," and can serve to enhance or sharpen the judgment (ME112; PC259). People often speak of the emotions and the emotional states or reactions of persons as unreasonable or i r r a t i o n a l , he says, and they frequently are (RP160). But to speak of them in these ways suggests, also, that we can speak of them as reasonable or rational: standards of "appropriateness" can be reached. To say that an emotional reaction i s i r r a t i o n a l , Peters says, i s to say that the person experiencing the emo-tion has no grounds for feeling the way that he does; to say an emo-tional reaction is unreasonable is to say that there are some grounds, but not sufficiently good grounds, for his feeling that way. In spite of the fact that we can speak of emotions as "rational" or "reasonable," there i s , nevertheless, a tendency for emotion-appraisals to be "unrea-sonable" or " i r r a t i o n a l . " The appraisals "are often made rather int u i t i v e l y and urgently, with l i t t l e careful analysis of the grounds. for making them" (RP160; RC85,94; ME110).* Peters points out that appraisals connected with both motives and emotions "are very closely connected with a form of social l i f e into which we have been i n i t i a t e d . . . in which we view ourselves and others in a certain l i g h t " (PU401). The emotions jealousy, envy, pride,. *See also (Dearden, p. 83). 167 ambition, guilt and remorse a l l presuppose social concepts such as 'rights,' 'claims,' 'possession' and so on. Other cultures may not have the same interpretation of these concepts as we do. This remark serves to point out i n another way, Peters' belief about our passivity in the face of many of our emotion-appraisals: the milieu in which we were raised is in large part responsible for our beliefs. Some of these emotion-appraisals are unreasonable, some i r r a t i o n a l , others reasonable or rational. To develop the appropriate appraisals—the ones "ration-a l l y " based—is often a d i f f i c u l t undertaking, because we have learned to react or have been conditioned to react in stereotyped ways. And, says Hirst, "emotional response i s not infrequently the outcome of certain dispositions to believe what in fact we know to be ir r a t i o n a l or unreasonable" (Hirst, p. 68). To go against i r r a t i o n a l or unreason-able emotions then, may be to go against the grain of a particular cultural t r a i t and our own perverse tendencies. There may be lim i t s , Peters suggests, as to how much a person can re-learn appraisals. Behavioural research, he recommends, i s important i n helping to deter-mine what these limits are. B. Comments on Peters' Analysis of 'Emotion' Peters' analysis of the concept 'emotion' in terms of an appraisal or evaluative feature i s similar to other philosophers' analyses of 'emotion.' Dearden writes that emotions have an "inner, feeling side to them" but are also "linked to objects and states of af f a i r s which are seen in a certain evaluative l i g h t " (Dearden, p. 80ff.). Hirst says that a l l emotions are necessarily tied to beliefs, "for what makes an emotional experience what i t i s i s dependent on some understanding, 168 appraisal or belief about the significance of the situation for the person himself. To fear, hate or love i s only possible as a result of some self-referring grasp of the state of a f f a i r s " (Hirst, p. 68). Alston, on the other hand, considered i t important to point out the insufficiency of the evaluational theory of the emotions (Alston, 1967a, p. 479). He begins by l i s t i n g what various people would take to be typical features of emotion-states; (1) the cognition of something (evaluation) as i n some way desirable or undesirable, (2) feelings of certain kinds, (3) marked bodily sensations of certain kinds, (4) invol-untary bodily processes and overt expressions of certain kinds, (5) tendencies to act i n certain ways. "Theories of emotion," he says, " d i f f e r as to which of these constitute the emotion and which features are causes, effects or concomitants of the emotion." After arguing that none of features (2) to (5) are essential to a l l emotion-states (e.g., fear, anger, jealousy, envy, shame, etc.), Alston addresses the question whether feature (1), the cognition or evaluation of something, is the common, that i s , necessary feature of a l l emotions. We do distinguish between shame and embarrassment, he says, "by reference to how the subject perceives the object of the emotion. Shame, for example, takes the object to be something which i s his fault . . . such evaluations can obviously be judged as more or less reasonable, r e a l i s t i c , or j u s t i f i e d . " Even though we can argue that the presence of such evaluations seems to be what makes bodily states and sensations emotional, nevertheless, he says, we cannot identify emotions with evaluations alone. "An evaluation can be either emotional or 169 unemotional; two persons can see a situation as equally dangerous yet one can be much more frightened than the other—the degree of fright can vary without a variation i n the perceptual evaluation." As well, evaluations are central not only to emotions, but to attitudes l i k e love and hate, dispositions l i k e desire and aversion, and qualities of character lik e benevolence and courage. Hence, he concludes i t i s necessary to see emotions as evaluations (appraisals), to which may be added any of (2) to (5): feelings, bodily sensations and/or tendencies to act i n certain ways. Alston presents a straw-man argument. He sets i t up in such a way as to suggest that features (1) to (5) could'somehow be considered as the one necessary feature of a l l paradigmatic emotions, then argues that (1) the cognition or evaluation, i n the end, must be conjoined with some other feature so as to distinguish emotion-evaluations from the evaluations peculiar to attitudes, dispositions and qualities of charac-ter. But i t would be odd for anyone to suggest that (1) was the only necessary condition of an emotion; most people would maintain that some feeling, or some tendency, or some bodily upset, accompanied cog-nitions peculiar to the various emotions. Peters' notion of an appraisal seems to capture the sense of believing something, and being affected in some way by the belief. Moreover, Alston's remark that some persons feel things more strongly than others, does not count against his argument that "evalua-tions'' alone could not provide the only necessary condition of an emotion. It does point out that some persons' evaluations or appraisals are based on stronger beliefs than those of another appraiser. But the 170 variation i n the strength of feeling says nothing about whether we should or should not consider the evaluative component to be the only necessary condition of an emotion. Against those who argue that not a l l emotions involve an evaluation of something (an "object"), Alston correctly points out, however, that the so-called "objectless emotions" (nameless dread, vague apprehension or anxiety and general i r r i t a t i o n ) are not central or paradigm cases of emotion; hence analysis of them should wait u n t i l we are clear about the evaluation-objects of the central cases. Abelson agrees that emotions l i k e "vague anxiety" are not central cases of emotions, but says that we might just view these emotions to be directed toward indefinite rather than definite objects (Abelson, p. 57ff.). Thus far, we have seen that Peters' analysis of an 'emotion' attends exclusively to the 'appraisal element' of emotions: believing certain things and being affected by them in some way. Emotion-appraisals are cognitions which have to do with what the appraiser believes i s of value: emotions affect him in some way. As we w i l l see in this next section, Peters' notion of an emotion-appraisal i s useful when we speak of the emotions of others who may be affected by the agent's actions and when we speak of the agent's own moral emotion-appraisals. C. Peters, Emotions and Morality A consideration of the role emotions play i n moral judgment and. action can lead i n two rather obvious directions, both of which e l i c i t a few comments, from Peters. The f i r s t direction considers what knowledge of other persons a moral agent should have to make well-founded 171 judgments; the second considers what knowledge a moral agent should have of himself i n order to know and act on the judgments he makes. The f i r s t direction, considering what knowledge moral agents should have of others, can again be divided into two related categories: (a) general knowledge of persons and (b) knowledge of particular persons. The second direction, considering what knowledge moral agents should have of themselves, can be divided into (c) self-awareness of enabling and inhibiting emotion-appraisals, and (d) emotion-appraisals l i k e shame, gui l t , remorse, indignation and resentment—the so-called "moral emo-tions." A l l of these categories suggest areas of concern for educators wanting to improve the moral competencies of people. Regarding the knowledge of other persons which i s essential to a moral agent's judgment and action, I w i l l give some indication of the sorts of things Peters intends. If we put aside, once again, Peters' view than an agent's own self-development or self-perfection i s a matter of moral concern, and concentrate instead on what he takes to be the main thrust of morality—the avoidance and prevention of harm to o t h e r s — i t follows, l o g i c a l l y , that the agent's a b i l i t y and disposition to avoid harm to others must be due, in part at least, to the agent's knowledge of others' states and conditions. In consistency with his general viewpoint about morality, then, Peters must hold that, to be moral, agents should have a goodly amount of knowledge about the r e c i p i -ents or prospective recipients of the agents' actions. I have taken the l i b e r t y of dividing such knowledge into two categories, although i t i s not clear that Peters would separate them in this way. I have done this because i t seems clear to me that the 172 decisions moral agents must make and act on are generally of two kinds: those for which we have l i t t l e opportunity to know i n great detail or with any detail at a l l , the particular feelings, interests, desires, wants or beliefs of persons who may be affected by actions we take, and on the other hand, those for which we "take into account" the feelings, interests, desires, wants and beliefs of particular persons (this does not rule out knowing what are general features of persons, but could probably be considered a sub-set of general knowledge about persons). When I say general knowledge about persons to be affected by agents' decisions and actions, I mean knowledge (beliefs) about what persons are l i k e l y to feel or do, or what they would feel or do i n certain circumstances i f , for example, their wants or interests are ignored or deliberately violated in some way. Examples of this would be the decisions moral agents must make regarding foreign aggression i n Vietnam, or, closer to home, decisions about local government policies affecting various.groups of the population: East and native Indians, heroin addicts, the elderly, religious c u l t i s t s , the unemployed. The competent moral agent making well-founded moral decisions on these cases must have, not only some sense, but a clear sense of how persons are likely to feel i f certain governmental decisions are taken and acted upon. Another way of saying this, I believe, i s to say that having the concept of these others as_ persons i s , at the least, to know what things w i l l bring these persons unhappiness and unnecessary pain: those actions which promote not justice, but injustice. In a moral agent's personal relations, as well, he must not only be aware of what other persons' feelings are l i k e l y to be—what persons generally might f e e l — b u t also what particular desires and aversions persons have with whom he comes in contact? in his relationships with the opposite sex, with his children, and at his work and leisure. Certainly a great part of this knowledge of persons in the agent's daily l i f e and in his resolution of moral problems, i s knowledge gained via or simply i s knowledge of these persons' emotion-states. As Peters and Hirst both say, the existence of emotional responses i s a very effective indicator of the existence within persons of certain beliefs or attitudes (Hirst, p. 68). Abelson, i n essential agreement with Peters and Hirst, puts i t this way: To attribute an emotion l i k e anger, love or jealousy . . . to another i s to explain his present and l i k e l y future actions in terms of the way he envisions his situation, the way he interprets his bodily agitations ( i f any), the goals he pursues, the relative values he places on those goals, and the rules of action that, for him, link means and ends. In brief, ascribing an emotion to a person is short-hand for an extraordinary amount of information about him, which may help explain why adequate psychological understanding is so d i f f i c u l t to achieve. (Abelson, p. 60) It i s not clear, however, to what extent (how) the competent moral agent must consider or take into account the emotion-states or li k e l y emotion-states of persons with whom he has close contact or who may be affected "from afar" by the agent's actions. This uncertainty is further compounded when we realize that many persons' emotion-appraisals are unreasonably or irr a t i o n a l l y held. Does the agent's knowledge of other persons, gained via the recognition of their emotion-states or via imagining their probable feelings, present him with a prima facie reason, or a sufficient reason, or no reason at a l l perhaps, for deciding what to do one way or another? It i s d i f f i c u l t , of course, to 174 answer this question apart from analyses of particular cases. But as well, Peters must provide a more comprehensive moral theory than he does in order to answer these questions and analyze particular cases. Certainly i t i s not clear what knowing other persons' emotion-states actually says to the moral agent who wants to know what he should do. Peters does not enter this debate—he does not say in what way knowledge of other persons' emotions i s relevant to moral decision-making; he simply says this knowledge i s relevant. It seems easier, on the other hand, to see the relevance of the moral agent's knowledge of his, own emotion-appraisals to his moral delib-eration and action, although there are problems here too which Peters leaves largely unattended. There are a l l sorts of cases, says Peters, where a person judges something to be the right course of action, but f a i l s to carry i t out "because he gets side-tracked by emotions l i k e fear, or hesitates because of jealousy" (EE32; PC259; also Hirst, p. 68). If a moral agent knows that he is envious, or jealous, or angry, or proud—if he can correctly identify his own emotion-states—and i f he knows that these feelings are due to particular cognitions or beliefs he holds, i t i s conceivable that he could "do something about" those ones he may conclude are unreasonably or ir r a t i o n a l l y held. He could try to assess the adequacy of the grounds for feeling i n the way that he does; he could attempt to "eradicate false beliefs" and in so doing modify his appraisals (RC100; EEm). He could attempt, in short, the education of his own emotions (Hirst, op. ext., p. 13). Actually, Peters does not hold out much hope that such education of one's emotion-states w i l l proceed by self-examination, for "the 175 determination to examine the facts of the matter, to base our appraisals on well-grounded beliefs, i s not a disposition that comes naturally to most men" (EEm). And he states this even more strongly: the emotions jealousy, anger, envy, pride (what he c a l l s the 'self-referential emo-tions'), are "extremely unamenable to education." Perhaps the only way of changing i r r a t i o n a l l y or unreasonably held emotions into rational emo-tions " i s by encouraging the 'self-transcending emotions': love, awe, a sense of justice and respect" (DR135; EEml89). These emotions enable a person to act on what he knows or judges to be right; these, he says, are the emotions which must function as a person's motives. Peters does not say how these emotions enable a person to act on what he judges to be right. And certainly, with respect to awe, at any rate, i t i s not at a l l clear how this could be so. Peters i s probably right to say that most people would not find i t easy to re-appraise the beliefs upon which their emotion-states are based. But i t is not only because this i s a "disposition" unnatural to men; i t i s also because i t i s often quite confusing to people what i s and what i s not a 'rationally-held' emotion-appraisal. Peters does not examine what are appropriate or correct emotion-appraisals. I concur with Williams when he says that this i s one issue which "cries but for examination": What should be feared or hoped for . ; . i s obviously, to some extent, a matter in which disagreements of value between soci-eties and individuals come out. Equally this i s a central matter of moral education. If such education does not revolve round such issues as to what to fear, what to be angry about, what—if anything—to despise, where to draw the lin e between kindness and a stupid sentimentality—I do not know what.it i s . (Williams, 1965, p.20) 176 Unless an agent can decide when he should be angry or when he should have feelings of "love, awe, and respect," i t makes l i t t l e sense for Peters to recommend that the impact of one's s e l f - r e f e r e n t i a l emotions be lessened by the encouragement of the self-transcending emotions of love, awe and respect. Of course, Peters makes the distinction between anger as a 'self-referential emotion' and moral anger or indignation. The la t t e r , l i k e the other moral emotions of shame, gu i l t , remorse, resentment, give the agent some indication of the rules and principles he holds. These emo-tions, tod, must be based on appropriate appraisals and should come to function as an agent's motives: To writhe with sympathy, to fume with moral indignation, to squirm with guilt or shame, (are) more desirable than to be incapable of such feelings. But i t i s surely more desirable s t i l l that these appraisals should function as motives for doing whatever i s approp-riate. This i s particularly important in the context of dealing with tendencies to action which issue from undesirable motives such as envy, hatred and lust. (EEml89) Guilt, he says, may be due to our fear of punishment or our antic-ipation of disapproval from someone we view as an authority. On the other hand guilt may be experienced when we have internalized some moral rules and principles; i t i s this guilt which i s the more desirable kind (DR147; EEml84; PC260).* Guilt of this second type, and the other moral emotions of shame, indignation and remorse provide at least prima  facie reasons for. acting i n particular ways and not i n others. The tric k i s to know when one's anger or indignation originates with rationally-held moral beliefs, arid when one's anger i s due only to one's *0n this, see (Hirst, op. c i t . , p. 68). 177 beliefs about what should or should not have happened to oneself. Peters' discussion of the emotions and the moral emotions sets the stage for a consideration of this topic, but he leaves i t to the reader to sort out when an emotion i s a moral emotion, and when that moral emotion provides a prima facie or sufficient reason for acting. Finally, in Peters' treatment of the moral emotions, he expresses agreement with Rawls' thesis that the moral feelings of shame, remorse and guilt are necessarily connected with the "natural attitudes" of s e l f -esteem, compassion and love. Feeling shame depends upon a developed sense of one's own self-esteem; love i s exhibited i n a tendency to fee l guilt or remorse in certain circumstances. A child's self-esteem and a b i l i t y to love, Peters maintains, "which lays the foundations for the later development of (his) guilt and remorse when moral concepts are introduced," are established early on i n a "right relationship" with the mother (PC259,61). Regrettably, Peters gives no attention to the inf l u e n t i a l role the father does, or could play i n helping to maintain both the mother's and the child's sense of self-esteem and " a b i l i t y " to love. * * * * * * In Part III of this chapter, I have looked at Peters' analysis of the concept 'emotion,' and the role he sees for the emotions in the moral l i f e . A key feature of his concept of an 'emotion' i s the 'appraisal' or belief of the person who has the emotion-appraisal. When he speaks of educating the emotions as an essential task of moral educa-tion, he says that many of these appraisals or beliefs cannot be changed 178 or re-learned. Nevertheless the impact of the inhibiting emotions might be lessened by encouraging other "positive" appraisals or beliefs. He avoids saying, however, what beliefs or appraisals persons should make i f they are to be morally educated: that i s what they should feel guilty about, or angry about or indignant over. CHAPTER 5 Character and Virtues Virtues connected with the w i l l — f o r example, courage, integrity and perseverance—are con-nected with rationality, with consistency and with the maxim that to w i l l the end i s to w i l l the means. (RC28-9) The purpose of this chapter i s to determine to what extent the notions "virtue" and "character" add to or c l a r i f y Peters', account of moral judgment and action. Do these notions provide a unifying theme for the picture he presents? Is his sense of "character" consistent with his other views? Perhaps more importantly, do his notions of "virtues" and "character" provide cues to the moral educator whose tasks are, f i r s t , to enlarge peoples' understanding of moral matters, and second, to help dispose them to act on the judgments they make? I. "Virtue" and Virtues "Virtue" i s an unfashionable term these days: i t suggests r i g i d adherence to narrow social expectations. We have come to associate the term either with certain h i s t o r i c a l times—the reign of Queen Victoria for instance—or with religious/theological positions, i n which partic-ular behavioural codes having to do with sexual conduct or personal piety were or are recommended and in some degree enforced. Victorians, for example, thought men and women "good and virtuous" i f they acted i n accordance with standards a l l good ladies and gentlemen 179 180 would accept. "Vice" was used to signify the f a l l i n g away of men and women from those standards. For women especially, the terms "virtue" and "vice" were used to evaluate their sexual conduct. Vices were e v i l , virtues good—with l i t t l e room between the two extremes. An etymological examination of the terms "virtue" and "vice" would no doubt be interesting, as would h i s t o r i c a l accounts of their current narrow interpretation in our language. This, of course, i s not essen-t i a l here. What we can do, however, i s to see how fair Peters' use of the term "virtue" and his encouragement of particular virtues i s based on, or i s at least consistent with his view of moral conduct. Given Peters' claim that his view of morality d i f f e r s from a view based on particular codes of conduct (see Chapter 2 ) , i t i s rather ironic that he would choose to use the term "virtue" at a l l . His use of this term suggests that he may have adopted those presuppositions about moral conduct against which he has set his own "rational" view of morality. The question should at least be asked whether the virtues Peters selects have a rational foundation, regardless of the status of the term "virtue" in our language. Of course Peters may just be using "virtue" as.a technical term to indicate what he thinks are praiseworthy acts and dispositions. But i f this i s so, the term does not seem to do any special job i n his account of morality. He simply believes that there is_ a good rationale for encouraging those behaviours he cal l s virtues; he implies that the reasons for promoting these virtues d i f f e r from reasons given by those who demand adherence to specific codes of conduct. Part of my task, of course, is to assess whether his grounds for promoting these v i r t u e s — p a r t i c u l a r l y the self-control v i r t u e s — a r e coherent and rational. We must also look at Peters' notion of 'character,' for i n his scheme, the notions 'virtue' and 'character' are logically related to each other. Virtues, according to Peters, are of four kinds. Category 1: the highly specific virtues or habits such as punctuality, tidiness and honesty. These are connected, he says, with specific types of acts; "they lack any b u i l t - i n reason for acting i n the manner prescribed" (see Chapter 4). Recall, however, his statement that the so-called "habits of perception" are not virtues (Chapter 3, p. 94). Category 2: the virtues such as compassion, benevolence and con-cern for others which serve as motives for action. Category 3: the more " a r t i f i c i a l " virtues, such as justice and tolerance "which involve more general considerations to do with rights and institutions, and which require much in the way of thought." Category 4: the virtues of a "higher" order, such as courage, integrity and perseverance, "which must be exercised i n the face of counter-inclinations." These are the virtues of "self-control" (MD318). Peters' c l a s s i f i c a t i o n of virtues raises several d i f f i c u l t i e s , among them the rather arbitrary way he selects examples of (1) habit-t r a i t s , (2) motives, (3) a r t i f i c i a l virtues, and (4) self-control t r a i t s . Can any of the specific virtues or habits he names be motives? Could justice or tolerance be motives? Might benevolence and concern for others be correctly considered dispositional traits? The answer 182 to each of these questions, I believe, i s 'Yes.' The problem with his c l a s s i f i c a t i o n scheme i s not just that we may see reason for grouping his examples differently than he does. The major problem l i e s with his assumption that motives comprise a different logical category than either of the others; i n particular his assumption that motives (acting for certain motives) di f f e r s from acting because of certain t r a i t s . His c l a s s i f i c a t i o n scheme i s thus rather odd from two points of view: (1) the fact that he sets out four categories of virtues would suggest that his categories represent long-term or endur-ing dispositions to act i n particular ways ( t r a i t s ) , yet he includes motives among these categories, and (2) the fact that he'separates motives from the other categories of dispositional t r a i t s . We saw in Chapter 4, Part II (Motives), that Peters thinks i t makes sense to say that a person acted from a certain motive without implying that this motive i s evidence of the person's tendency or dis-position to act similarly under similar circumstances or antecedent con-ditions. At the same time, we should remember that one of Peters' key ideas i s his insistence that moral motives be developed in persons. His favourite phrase i s that moral principles (e.g., respect, compas-sion and concern) "must become personalized . . . must become a person's own." This indicates that he believes that acting for moral motives i s acting from, or on account of, an enduring disposition or t r a i t . Now, we might say that a person could act from a moral motive of respect, for example, on only one occasion. That i s , i t does not seem to be a logical contradiction to say that a person could act with respect or benevolence and s t i l l not be considered a respectful or benevolent man. But i t is inconsistent, I believe, to say that a man has "personalized" the principles of respect and benevolence, and to say that this man has not developed dispositions or t r a i t s to act for moral motives. Peters' cla s s i f i c a t i o n of the virtues suggests that he believes motives d i f f e r from the other t r a i t s , even though he says that principles can be t r a i t s : To c a l l something a ' t r a i t ' of character i s simply to suggest that someone has.made a rule, for example, of honesty or justice — h i s own. Whether a rule, which can also be regarded as a t r a i t of character i f i t is internalized, i s a principle depends on the function which the rule or consideration, which i s personalized in the t r a i t , perforins. To c a l l justice or concern for others a principle i s to suggest tha.t backing or j u s t i f i c a t i o n i s provided by them for some more specific rule or course of action. (MD313) But the only examples Peters gives of principles as t r a i t s are justice and honesty. He goes on to say that there s t i l l "are important differences between virtues which are motives and those which are character t r a i t s . " These motive-virtues—concern for others and com-passion—^develop earlier in a child's l i f e than do justice or even honesty. "Concern for others . . . can get a foothold i n a persons' moral l i f e earlier than justice, because i t is not necessarily connected with rules and social arrangements, as is justice" (MD313). From this, I conclude that Peters believes that motives such as compassion and con-cern can be dispositional t r a i t s , but they d i f f e r from habit-traits of honesty and justice, and they d i f f e r from the self-control traits of persistence and determination. Habit-traits and self-control t r a i t s , he says represent "internalized rules widespread i n society" and the manner in which people stick to lower-order rules. 'Motives,' however, is a term that we use "to ascribe purposes to people of a personal 184 rather than s p e c i f i c a l l y i n s t i t u t i o n a l sort" (ME94). I w i l l leave aside, now, questions about his categorization of virtues, and motive-virtues, and concentrate instead on categories (1) and (4): habit-traits and self-control t r a i t s . II. Character-Traits Peters c a l l s categories (1) and (4) t r a i t s , that i s , long-term or enduring dispositions to act i n particular ways. Motives, I have con-cluded, can be dispositional t r a i t s . But motives, Peters says, are "teleolbgical" concepts: they are conceptually connected with "goals." Categories (1) and (4) t r a i t s , on the other hand, are "non-teleological" in the sense that they indicate "the type of regulation a person imposes on his conduct whatever his goals may be" (CM5; PC245). Within the class of t r a i t s , the self-control t r a i t s are "content-free," he says, while t r a i t s of the social-rule variety are not (MD314; CM5; PC251). Moreover, both categories of t r a i t s d i f f e r from those traits we associate with a person's temperament, nature or personality (PU400; PC245; TC135). A. The Social Rule Variety of Character-Traits The f i r s t group of virtues, habits or character-traits—about which we have spoken i n Chapter ;3 (pp. 80ff.)—"embody" or "represent" the "internalization of social rules" (ME94; EE57; MD314; PU400; RC17). They are not connected.with any social role, but "affect the manner in which an individual conducts himself within a role as well as in his non-institutionalized relationships with others" (CP289). Peters now expands this category to include the character-traits (habits; rules) 185 of unselfishness, fairness, honesty, punctuality, considerateness, t h r i f t , tidiness and chastity. It i s with reference to this group of t r a i t s , he says, that we often speak, " i n a non-committal sense," of a man or woman's character. 'Character,' here,, refers to the sum total of the t r a i t s a person exhibits, "the part of the social code which i s stamped upon him" (TC135). B. Self-Control Character Traits 1. Self-Control and the W i l l The self-control category of traits-—Peters' fourth category of v i r t u e s — a r e those tr a i t s or dispositions to act which also affect the manner in which a person adheres to rules or follows certain purposes (RC17.20; CP289; CM5.32). But he c a l l s these t r a i t s the self-control virtues since "they must be exercised i n the face of counter-inclina-tions." There would be no point i n marking out the social-rule variety of t r a i t s , he says, " i f there did not exist, in general, inclinations which they regulate or canalise" (PU400). But while the social rule t r a i t s may be exercised in the face of counter-inclinations, they need not be. The notion of self-control, however, lo g i c a l l y demands a con-text of temptation. The "self-control t r a i t s " he mentions most frequently are deter-mination, integrity, conscientiousness and consistency.* To this l i s t he adds enterprise, courage, persistence, perseverance, incorruptibility and resoluteness.** Except for some passages on the notion of consistency, and some speculation about how he believes courage i s *(RC17,20; CP289,292,298; MD314; ME94; EE34; PU400; EEml90; DR134). **(RC20; PU400; DR128; CP289; MD314; EE34). 186 developed (MD327), Peters does not analyze these t r a i t s i n any d e t a i l ; nor does he pay much attention to selecting those situations for which he thinks each i s appropriate. These "self-control" t r a i t s , Peters continues, "are linked with the w i l l . " In a rather ambiguous move, he says that the connection between these t r a i t s and the w i l l i s one of necessity: "part of our understanding of a 'principled morality' is that people should stick.to their principles in the face of temptation, r i d i c u l e and the l i k e . " "Moral agents should have these t r a i t s , " h e continues, " i f they wish to carry out what they see as just" (MD314). Given what Peters has said about moral motivation, we must try to determine the status of this present claim. Does Peters mean that i t i s merely desirable that, moral agents have these traits? Probably more than this. Does Peters mean that unless persons have these t r a i t s , they cannot carry out what they see as just? This l a t t e r , strong, claim sug-gests at least two different interpretations, one of which i s more plausible than the other. 2. Interpretations of Peters' Claim (a) as a conceptual claim We might interpret Peters' claim that moral agents should have the "self-control" t r a i t s , f i r s t , as a comment on what i t means to act on their moral judgments. If agents acted on their judgments, then on this interpretation, these agents must have "exercised their w i l l s , " their self-control. But i f this i s his meaning, Peters must also believe, to be consistent, that a person's motives or operative reasons are not sufficient, are never sufficient i n themselves to move that 187 person to act. The person who acted morally must not only have been motivated to act because of moral concerns but must also have overcome some counter-inclination or counter-motivation to act i n this way. To interpret Peters' claim as a conceptual claim, however, seems a bit forced, and lands Peters with a rather perverse view. The very presence of the word "should," rather than "must," would seem to rule out any conceptual point about acting on judgments. Let us turn then to a second, more plausible interpretation of Peters' claim that moral agents should have the virtues of self-control in order to do what they see i s just. (b) as an empirical claim The common-sense or "natural" way to interpret Peters' claim i s as a general empirical claim about the d i f f i c u l t i e s moral agents may face, in fact usually w i l l face, when they come to act on their moral judg-ments. I examine some of these d i f f i c u l t i e s — w h a t Peters c a l l s "counter-inclinations"—in section 3 below. In the face of these d i f f i c u l t i e s , the agent may have conflicting motivations: motivations which t e l l him that he ought to do X, and motivations which t e l l him not to do X or to do Y instead. His motiva-tion to do X (e.g., to act with fairness) may prove to be insufficient to move him to act on X. If, then, the agent "wishes to carry out what he sees as just," most or a l l of the time, he should be a person who can exercise self-control over his counter-inclinations or counter-motiva-tions . To say, however, that the moral agent should be one who can exercise self-control i s to suggest that he have enduring dispositions (traits) to exercise self-control. If.we make the claim that agents cannot do what they see is just unless they have these t r a i t s of se l f -control, this claim could plausibly be offered as a conceptual .point about the nature of these t r a i t s . That i s , i n c o r r u p t i b i l i t y just is_ the a b i l i t y to withstand corrupting influences, determination just ±s_ the disposition to act even in the face of d i f f i c u l t y , courage just i s the a b i l i t y to overcome fear to do what i s just. To make analytic or conceptual points about the nature of these t r a i t s does not imply that original motivations to do X must always have been insufficient to get the agent to act on X. There would be plenty of cases, surely, in which an agent's or i g i n a l motivations would be sufficient to get him to act without his overcoming particular conflicts or counter-inclinations. On many occasions the agent's a b i l i t y or disposition to exercise his self-control may not even be tested. In other words, to say that an agent cannot be moral a l l the time without self-control i s to make a conceptual point about self-control, not a conceptual point about the agent's moral motivation. And to say that an agent cannot be moral a l l the time i s to make an empirical point about moral motivation: an agent motivated by moral concerns frequently encounters opposition, and frequently these motivations of his are insufficient to move him to act. If, however, we say that moral agents should have self-control t r a i t s in order to overcome counter-inclinations and act on what they see i s just, we must pick out what t r a i t s of self-control these are. For surely not a l l instances where the agent encounters opposition and where he exercises the "virtues of self-control" are relevant to his 189 being just or f a i r to others. Peters' failure to differentiate between tr a i t s that are required for being moral from those that are not, causes some d i f f i c u l t i e s as I w i l l show below. 3. Counter-Inclinations Peters distinguishes two kinds of counter-inclinations. I c a l l them (a) outside influences, and (b) inhibiting physical and emotion-reactions. (a) outside influences Peters' phrase for these influences is "inclinations social in character." They include (i) bribes and fl a t t e r y , and ( i i ) the i n d i -vidual's susceptibility to group example or pressures: "taking one's colour from the company one keeps" (PU401; DR128; TC135; MD327). Presumably, what distinguishes category (i) from category ( i i ) is the purposeful or intentional aspect of category (i) actions. There are intentions behind category (i) actions—intentions of others to get agents to do and think certain things—which are either absent in the case of category ( i i ) influences, or which are less directly "inferred." Regarding category (i) influences, Peters says "a man who i s at the mercy of his passing inclinations i s a man whose behaviour shows very l i t t l e sign of being rule-governed." He distinguishes this from category ( i i ) actions: "a man whose behaviour i s rule-governed but whose rules are those of the company he keeps" (PC251). Before looking at these influences in more d e t a i l , we should remark on Peters' sense of "autonomous moral agent" for this notion i s central, I believe, to his account of the agents' a b i l i t i e s and dispositions to overcome or resist these influences. 190 Peters believes that "independence of judgment" i s a character-i s t i c of the autonomous moral agent (CP292; PU410)• In Peters' view, being morally autonomous entails, at the least, being able to resist "corrupting" influences. In addition, the "autonomous moral agent" acts on his choices and carries out his tasks with what he c a l l s "authen-t i c i t y " or genuineness. Peters usually speaks of the authentic choices the agent makes for himself. But he seems to suggest that autonomous agents w i l l make authentic choices i n respect of their moral (inter-personal) conduct as w e l l — t h a t i s , in respect of their acting on moral rules and principles.* Let us.consider now Peters' reasons for press-ing his case for "autonomy and authenticity" as ideals of human conduct. As I noted i n Chapter 3 (p. 117), Peters presents an alternative to a style of l i v i n g which he thinks lacks colour and verve. He seems to despair of persons who display a kind of "seeond-handedness" in their choice of personal goals and i n the means they choose to reach these goals. These people l i v e l i f e , "as a kind of t o i l , " he observes, or in a way which suggests they need approval. Peters' autonomous moral agent, by contrast, chooses and acts in an authentic manner: he carries out his duties with dedication, his reactions are "his own," he i s *To Peters the notion "autonomous moral agent" suggests having a passionate commitment to reason, to truth. It means the development of, or commitment to what Peters ca l l s the "rational passions": the love of consistency and hatred of inconsistency, impatience with irrelevancy, abhorrence of the arbitrary, determination to "look at the facts," etc. (MD329; 330). But he seems to suggest that "this passionate regard for reason" means as well, a passionate regard for those considerations which moral (interpersonal) principles make relevant: a sense of jus-tice, respect for others," consideration of their interests, freedom arid ' truth-telling. The connection he sees between an agent's passionate commitment to the norms of practical reason and his commitment to moral principles i s what I am concerned with here. 191 genuinely committed to his goals (CP297; PU410). As well, the auton-omous moral agent, on Peters' conception, "pursues the human excellences . . . with creativity, wisdom and autonomy . . . (his pursuit of these excellences) depends on the development of (his) rational capacities" (RC17). Clearly, Peters interprets "moral" i n the phrase "autonomous moral agent" to mean the awakening of the agent's sense of his own personhood—his own personal fulfillment—and Peters includes here the development of the agent's rational capacities. Peters wants people, he says, to put considerable personal effort into "making something of themselves" (PU401; PC246; CP292). What i s not clear in Peters' account, as I have indicated, i s the connection between the sense of "moral" linked to some kind of personal fulfillment or effort, and the sense of "moral" as a category of actions of an "interpersonal sort," in particular, those which are harmful or helpful to others. If Peters assumes that a " s e l f - f u l f i l l e d " autonomous agent acts morally i n respect of others' interests, his assumption, i t seems to me, is just wrong. It i s possible to think of autonomous adults, exercising independence of judgment by making choices i n an "authentic" or genuine manner, l i v i n g their lives in "creative" fashion — b u t who do not act morally i n the sense of avoiding and preventing harm to other persons. Now i t i s possible, of course, that both self-, fulfillment and respect for others are, for Peters, necessary conditions of being a rational, autonomous moral agent. But i f this i s so, the question can s t i l l be put to him whether he would consider an agent to be rational and autonomous i f that agent was " s e l f - f u l f i l l e d " but not respectful towards others. At any rate, Peters' discussion of counter-1 9 2 inclinations the agent should overcome in order to be moral gives evidence of his concern that agents be both " s e l f - f u l f i l l e d " autonomous agents and that they act so as to.avoid harm to others. Let us look more closely at these influences. People who use techniques of bribery and flattery no doubt have reasons, some rationale, for engaging i n these a c t i v i t i e s : reasons usually having to do with their own self-interest. Peters expects that the moral agent w i l l be able to recognize subtly coercive pressures and w i l l be both able and disposed to withstand such influences j£.o.r,reasons, of a .higher order, e.g..., justice and fairness. To resist these influences, the agent may see reasons why others might approach him with bribes or f l a t t e r y , but the moral agent must not consider those reasons, as reasons for him to act i n the way the briber or f l a t t e r e r wishes. The reasons (intentions) behind a briber's or flatterer's actions, I think Peters would say, must not even become -prima -facie- -reasons for. the ^ agentr in, h i s, delib er at ion, about „what.. t o ^ do. That i s , to resist bribery i t i s necessary that the agent not l e t his desire for the good offered as a bribe override his legitimate reasons for acting. Of course, Peters expects that the agent would,not. engage in acts of bribery or flattery himself. Peters' point about resisting this kind of outside influence i s well-taken. . It i s good: advice f or-,those susceptible ..to s.uch^inf^uemc.es,^ especially those whose role-duties demand fairness and impartiality in assessments of persons. Thus, with respect to moral matters (where • '-moral" -is--inter-preted i n the-ayoidance-ofrrharm sense), ,thereu.seemsj to ^ ^ be l i t t l e d i f f i c u l t y with Peters' claim. Acting on his advice, i s , however, another matter; especially i f 193 we interpret the notions 'bribery' and 'flattery' more broadly than simply "crossing the palm with money" or "complimenting a person." Techniques akin to bribery and flattery are evident i n advertising com-mercials and media images as well; no doubt these are influences moral agents should recognize and at least make some attempts to r e s i s t . But suppose an agent did not resist the bribery which he or others associated with advertising commercials or media images. Suppose that in another situation, the moral agent did not resist the f l a t t e r y of his friends. Could we correctly say that he was not an autonomous agent? Could we correctly say that he was not an autonomous moral agent (harm sense)? If our agent "succumbed" to the lure of advertisements, or flattery, we may or may not have sufficient evidence for saying he was not an autonomous moral agent (self-fulfillment sense), since there is obviously here a matter of degree. On the other hand, we may have no grounds at a l l for saying our agent was not morally autonomous i n respect of actions of his which affected others. If, as well, he lived his l i f e in a "second-hand way," as a kind of t o i l , or i n a somewhat colourless fashion, we would have insufficient grounds for claiming that he was not an autonomous moral agent (harm sense), although we might say he was not autonomous ( s e l f - f u l f i l l e d sense). With respect to the cases of bribery and flattery, we could only say of an agent that he was not autonomous morally (harm sense) when, under the influence of bribes and/or flat t e r y , he acted immorally (unfairly) to others. Peters' claim,1 then, that people should overcome these outside influences or must be more creative i n their l i f e s t y l e s in order to be or act moral should be suitably qualified or interpreted to 194 take account of those cases where i t i s not wrong ( a l l right) to allow oneself to be influenced by others' actions,, and those cases where acting because of those influences does harm to others. Peters' second category of outside influences he c a l l s "taking one's colour from one's company." In this category he puts "those men who have no generalized or thought-out principles, about, for example, being honest" (PC251). F i r s t , there are those men who have no settled principles . .. . those who act i n accordance with a principle such as 'When in Rome l i v e l i k e the Romans'; he ca l l s these "chameleons." Second, there are those men who,, "as a matter of policy, act on a prin-ciple such as 'One ought always to follow those rules that others follow' or 'One ought always to follow the rules l a i d down by the Church, the leader or the local community group'." Both kinds of conformist attitude indicate to Peters a lack of "autonomy." This i s evident i n the way Peters describes the cases. But i t isn't clear what Peters means when he says that persons should resist these influences in order to be moral. If Peters intends that individuals should resist group pressures or example to avoid hurting others, then we could agree with him that these influences ought to be resisted. On the other hand, i f Peters believes that conforming a t t i -tudes ought to be resisted as part of the individual's quest for personal autonomy (in making his own mind about matters), this claim has a di f f e r - , ent status. As he has described his cases, Peters has no grounds for claiming that individuals should resist these conformist attitudes in 195 order that they "act morally" (avoid harm).* If Peters had discussed in more detail the notion of 'conformity' we would have a clearer indication of what he intends. It i s not clear whether he understands 'conformity' to be antithetical to 'rational, autonomous morality.' If he does so consider i t , then he would have adequate grounds for saying that i f agents conform to the group they are with, they cannot be rational, autonomous agents. This would follow from what i t means to be 'rational and autonomous' and what i t means to be 'conformist.' But this would be a not very enlightening conceptual claim. On the other hand, Peters could mean, not that conformity i s antithetical to morality, but that i t indicates a lower-level of personal independence and decision-making capability, which may lead the agent to commit harmful acts to others. If Peters means this, then a person who was a conformist would need to reach another "higher" stage of autonomy in order to be f u l l y rational and in order to avoid those actions which harm others. But to say, as Peters does, that moral agents should overcome conformist attitudes i n order to be moral i s not very illuminating. An agent's conformist attitudes may not always, indeed may never lead him to commit harmful acts towards other persons. ""•Peters' "comment i s reminiscent of c r i t i c a l remarks levelled by " some adults against the hippie and youth communities of the late '60's: 'they a l l think alike . . . they even dress alike . . . obviously not an individual among them.' But surely hippie and youth resistance to ordinary custom was some evidence of their "culture's" individuality of expression. The "look-alike" garb of jeans and beads indicated a "conformity to normsi" but" a conformity brought about by a desire for anonymity, or a search for some refuge against an exasperated and hostile public. If the individual's hue was similar to his company's colour, i t was understandable, surely, and not reprehensible. The essence of this example I owe to D. G. Brown. 196 At this point, I shall assess Peters' treatment of "outside influences" for the "practice of morality." Why should we be concerned about how to interpret Peters' claim that people should overcome counter-influences i n order to be moral (act morally)? The importance, I think, Is this: i f Peters wants to claim that people should exercise s e l f -control (counter these influences) i n order to be moral, then we must know what sense of "moral" he intends (self-fulfillment or avoidance of harm), in order to know what tr a i t s of character he i s suggesting agents should have. Of course, i t i s not necessary that Peters must mean one sense of 'moral' oj_ the other. He could mean both. He could say that agents should overcome a l l kinds of counter-inclinations (including conformity) in order to "be moral" and mean by that that they should be s e l f - f u l f i l l e d and respectful towards others. What i s not clear, however, i s what rides upon his suggestion. What implications follow from his claim that agents should exercise their self-control in order to be moral? What must the community do, i f anything, to or for agents who do not have the "virtues" of self-control Peters thinks they should have? In discussing the virtues of self-control, Peters does not address the question of what happens—what the community's responsibility i s — I n those cases where agents do not exercise their self-control. 1 offer below some general remarks on this topic. The notion 'morality' suggests, at least, that morality ought to be enforced: that interference in people's liberty i s j u s t i f i e d where those persons have committed or are about to commit immoral (wrong) acts. The wanton murderer i s caught and punished; the tax evader i s made to 197 pay his taxes. We usually agree that the community has some grounds for interfering with the liberty of persons who perform wrong acts. But limits to that authority to enforce morality are determined, as i t were, by the kind of commitment a community has to the protection of the l i b e r -ties of i t s members. The balance we draw between the enforcement of morality and the protection of l i b e r t i e s , to a large extent, says what kind of society we w i l l have. On the one hand, we could be committed to a strong principle of enforcing morality and committed to a weak principle of l i b e r t y . On the other hand, we could be committed to a strong principle of individual liberty, and committed to a weak principle of enforcing morality. Another alternative and a more desirable one than either of these, I suggest, is a commitment to a strong principle of enforcing morality and commitment to a strong principle of l i b e r t y . * But i t i s essential when acting on either of the various combina-tions of strong and weak principles of morality and liberty to know when an action is a wrong one, and to know whether agents' interference in that action w i l l or w i l l not produce further harm. Whereas we consider i t r i g h t — j u s t i f i a b l e — t o interfere with agents who do not exercise their self-control in those cases where their lack of self-control leads to their committing immoral (wrong) acts, we require more j u s t i f i c a t i o n , or a different kind of j u s t i f i c a t i o n to decide whether we should interfere with agents who have not developed t r a i t s of personal "self-control," " " ' *T am grate^vrl "tb~ Tro'fessorD. • G. Brown for the' ideas "I have-pre- - -sented in this section. The statements I have made here refle c t his own scholarship. 198 i.e., those who in Peters' terms have not reached the stage of autonomy. The heroin addict, the motorcycle gang member, the grey-suited business-man who owns three cars, may each i n his own way i l l u s t r a t e some lack of "self-control" and some lack of "autonomy." What Peters does not discuss are the grounds for interfering with agents' l i b e r t i e s when these agents lack "self-control." As I have detailed i n Chapter 2 (pp. 75ff.), Peters selects the Principle of Freedom (Liberty) as one of his five fundamental principles of morality: an agent must not interfere with another agent's conduct (restrict his liberty) unless this second agent i s harming or i s about to harm another. This i s Peters''(or rather Mill's) general outline of a principle of freedom: i t provides one ground for interfering with agents' l i b e r t i e s , namely, when those agents are harming others. But Peters does not discuss when i t i s right to r e s t r i c t another agent's liberty i f one i s committed both to enforcing morality and protecting l i b e r t y . Neither does he consider those circumstances in which the community might j u s t i -fiably interfere with agents' l i b e r t i e s (1) for the agents' own good (justified paternalism) or (2) for the good of the community. This puts us in the d i f f i c u l t position, here, of trying to imagine when Peters would consider i t j u s t i f i a b l e for agents to interfere with ' ' . • other agents' l i b e r t i e s when these others do not exhibit self-control. Whereas many in the community might l i k e to severely r e s t r i c t the l i b e r -ties of those agents who do not or have not exercised self-control, my view i s that only in very rare casses i s paternalistic interference in adults' actions j u s t i f i e d . This brief discussion of outside influences, liberty and morality 199 raises important issues for the moral educator. He must decide what can and should be done to help persons resist these outside influences in order that they are disposed to act on their good moral judgments. As well, the moral educator should make his students aware of those circum-stances in which i t would be right and those circumstances i n which i t would be wrong for the community to interfere with agents' l i b e r t i e s . The moral educator, then, must be clear about what self-control virtues he should promote i n his own students. He should strive, as well, to make his students aware of their responsibilities vis-a-vis other agents who lack "self-control." Peters does not speak of "enforcing morality," although he con-siders various justifications for punishing persons who transgress rules about not harming others (EE276ff.). Nor would Peters want to enforce self-development given his commitment to liberty. But i f he insists that agents should exercise self-control in order to do what i s just, he must surely have some views about what, i f anything, should be done to bring others to exercise their self-control. I turn now to another of the counter-inclinations Peters believes agents should overcome in order to be moral: inhibiting physical and emotional reactions. (b) inhibiting physical and emotion-reactions As we saw in Chapter 4, Peters gives some attention to those inhibiting physical and emotional reactions which he thinks the^moral agent should overcome in order to act on what he judges to be right. In this category, Peters mentions counter-inclinations "which come from (the agent's) consciousness of heights or from his stomach" (PU401; DR128; TC135) 200 In speaking of moral dilemma situations, we usually come to some agreement that moral agents should counter their feelings of fear, nausea, dizziness: to save a drowning person, to disentangle a drunken woman from a chaotic situation, to rescue a child from a tree-top. The agent i n these situations has to decide when he must overcome his feelings i n order to do a "greater good," and when, for reasons of self-interest, i.e., prudence, he need not. In deciding what morality requires of an agent— and this includes, I believe, the ways i n which the agent might exercise prudence so as to perform the moral act—much depends upon what means are available to him to provide the needed help or prevent the harm. Assess-ment of these means undoubtedly includes the agent's evaluation of his own physical reactions, aversions, i n a b i l i t i e s , phobias—conditions which could possibly worsen already delicate situations. I am not suggesting that any phobia, any aversion, any i n a b i l i t y be considered an "excusing condition" for agents who do not act. My only point here i s that Peters might have qualified his claim.about overcoming inhibiting physical reactions to account for the various a b i l i t i e s and dispositions of agents to overcome such reactions. Recall from Chapter 4 that Peters mentions what he thinks are the most promising means for overcoming the inhibiting emotions of fear and anxiety. He doubts whether these feelings w i l l be controlled or overcome by "self-control": "by the agent saying 'no' to temptation, by his stand-ing firm, or by his being impervious to social pressures." He suggests that developing in the agent the "positive motivations of the s e l f -transcending sentiments" (love, awe, benevolence, respect) i s just as important (efficacious) i n helping him to overcome inhibiting physical 201 reactions as i s "the development of his prudence." What Peters leaves unsaid i s how this could be the case: how i s i t possible that a person's feelings of love, respect, especially awe could overcome that person's : _ fears and anxieties i n moral dilemma situations? C. Deciding and Acting To this point, I have discussed two categories of inclinations which Peters believes moral agents should overcome in order to act morally. In the case of outside influences, the agent might be corrupted or tempted by others to do what i s wrong, even though the agent may himself know what is right and wrong. The agent might also adopt wholesale others' rules or ways of l i v i n g instead of choosing his own style of l i f e i n an auton-omous, authentic, first-hand way. In the case of inhibiting emotion  reactions, the agent may be deflected or inhibited from doing what he knows is right. 'Weakness of w i l l , 1 he says, " i s explicable i n terms of emo-tions such as fear, anxiety and lust, which disrupt peoples' well-meaning intentions" (EEml90). These two categories, however, do not exhaust the possible kinds of inclinations agents might or should overcome i n order to act morally. A third category consists of those "disinclinations" to follow through or act on the judgments agents make. Now, Peters does not speak of these "disinclinations to act" as a "category" of influences to be overcome; but he does frequently mention agents who do not act on their judgments. He speaks of the self-control, persistence, and consistency which he believes moral agents should exhibit—consistency and persistence i n carrying out their policies or plans. It seems to me that there are many sorts of reasons why agents do not act " j u s t l y , " reasons which have 202 neither to do with their being subject to others' corrupting influences, nor with inhibitions arising from particular emotion-appraisals such as fear and anger. I w i l l discuss these reasons here. As well, I look at Peters' notion of 'consistency.' Peters says that many kinds of factors might account for "the gap between judgment and action" (PC259). Here follows a survey of these factors, some of which appeared in the previous two sections. F i r s t , Peters brings up the case of the "wicked man" who knows in general what he ought to do, and who has the judgment to see that a rule applies to his particular case, yet ruthlessly does what he knows i s wrong. This man simply wants to do something else much more; he feels too l i t t l e remorse or guilt to resist corrupting influences. Second, there i s the " e v i l man," who has a code and pursues i t i n a determined fashion; .this ' code however consists i n harming others (e.g., thrashing his children; keeping his wife in subjection). Third, there i s the man of "weak w i l l , " Peters says, who knows what i s right and who wants desperately to do i t , but because of his emotional i n s t a b i l i t y cannot always do i t . He i s the man "who either seems constitutionally lacking i n persistence or who seems to be a constant victim to various forms of passivity. He may be beset by insecurity, unconscious wishes or strange moods" (PC262). Fourth, there i s the "psychopath," says Peters, who can only speak of what he ought to do " i n an 'inverted commas', sense." Moral language ('right,' 'wrong,' 'ought,' etc.) "does not r e a l l y bite on his behaviour." This man cares very l i t t l e about doing what he ought to do: "he i s impervious to his obligations . . . wickedness isn't even a po s s i b i l i t y for him." 203 Peters believes that there are lessons to be learned from his descriptions of these persons. In the f i r s t case, the moral agent should learn to resist temptations; he should allow his own conscience to indicate what there are good (perhaps overriding) reasons for doing. In the second case, the moral agent must come to adopt reasons for acting which take others' interests into account rather than those which don't. In the case of emotional i n s t a b i l i t y (what he cal l s weakness of w i l l ) , agents should either learn to say 'no' to these moods or feelings, or else overcome them by cultivating "the more positive sentiments of love, benevolence, respect, awe." From Peters' description of the psychopath, moral agents should come to understand that to use moral language (making judgments of 'right' and 'wrong,' 'I ought . . .') is a serious business. To use moral language seriously is:, in some sense, to commit oneself to acting on i t — t o be genuinely, motivated by the concerns the language represents; as Peters puts i t , "to be committed to i t s point." Peters believes that i f an agent i s sincere i n his use of moral language, he w i l l come to act on.the judgments he makes: The general function of words l i k e 'right' and 'wrong' i s to move people to act." "If" there i s no such disposition to act in a particular case, we would say that the person i s using the term in an external sort of way or that he i s not sincere, or something similar to that. / (MD329) "But sure!y"*"an^ mofal~ju~dgmehts (using the language of 'good,' 'ought,' 'wrong,' 'right,'), and s t i l l not act on his judgments. An agent's sincerity i n using moral language, i n other words,' "does" "not" entail""th~a"frthe agent w i l l act on his judgments. If a person uses moral language l i k e 'right' and 'wrong' and does not 204 seem disposed to act i n a particular case, there are other possible explanations than Peters' explanation that this person i s being insincere in his use of moral terms or that he i s using these terms " i n an external sort of way." We might be tempted to say that the agent fa i l e d to act on X or Y because he was weak willed, or because he was fea r f u l , or that panic over-took him or that he had overriding e v i l intentions, but we do not need to explain the agent's failure to act on these ways. Moral agents, too, may f a i l to act on their judgments of 'right' and 'wrong' because they do not.know how to act on their judgments. This lack of knowledge i s common, I believe, among those who see the moral wrongness of a particular government policy but who do not know how to express their disapproval of i t . Of course, among those who believe a policy to be immoral, many simply do not have the determination or persistence to find out what they could do actively to oppose i t . But there are others determinedly and persistently opposed to a public policy who are s t i l l unclear about what they can do about i t . There appears to be, i n other words, some gap between the judgments they have made and their knowledge and disposition to act on those judgments. Could not the agent, also, see that many courses of action offer prima facie reasons for a c t i n g — f o r which he could sincerely say 'X i s permissible to do, so also i s Y permissible to do,' and yet see that neither X nor Y provide him with an ' a l l things considered' right-thing-to-do? The agent might simply find i t d i f f i c u l t to resolve conflicting obligations, or to make a choice between X and Y i f both X and Y are morally permissible acts. 205 Certainly we do have d i f f i c u l t y choosing between conflicting reasons and obligations. On Peters' own account, anyone who adopts or sees the point of his five fundamental principles (freedomj truth-t e l l i n g , consideration of interests, respect for persons and equality), and who attempts to "put these into practice" i n determining when a moral rule may be j u s t i f i a b l y overridden, for example, w i l l face indecision for at least some of his deliberations. Peters' answer to the problem of resolving conflicts of principle, as we have seen, i s to say that the agent must exercise his 'judgment'; the agent must simply decide " i n terms of these principles," then act on his decisions. This advice i s good,'perhaps, for those agents who would endlessly deliberate about what to do without ever getting around to acting "on what they see to be just." But i t is'not particularly enlightening for those who see the complexities of moral dilemma situa-tions, and for those who see the conflicts between their various obliga-tions, especially, i f these persons are convinced that there must be some c r i t e r i a in terms of which they can weigh competing considerations. To conclude, Peters i s correct to say that persons can be deflected from doing what i s right by others' corrupting influences. He i s cor-rect to say that persons can be deflected from doing what i s right by adopting a "bad code." Persons can be inhibited from doing what they see i s right, as well, by their inhibiting emotion-states. They may also be impervious to the seriousness of using moral language (that i t involves their own behaviour). I have suggested as well that agents' failure to act may be explained by agents' indecision i n the face of their sincere and honest attempts to resolve complex moral problems: by 206 their i n a b i l i t i e s to resolve what may be conflicts of principles. As well, I suggest, agents may not know how to act, In the public realm for example, on the sincere moral judgments they may make. Are my "additional cases" examples of "weakness of the will"? Although I believe Peters unwisely limits weakness of the w i l l to cases of emotional i n s t a b i l i t y , I would say that my cases do not necessarily demonstrate such a weakness. One case c a l l s attention to another kind of "gap" between judging and act i n g — a gap due to the enormously d i f f i -cult decisions moral agents must make. The other case has to do with insufficient knowledge about how to act on moral decisions. Peters speaks frequently of overcoming counter-inclinations by developing self-control and by being consistent. By consistency he seems to mean "acting i n accordance with the beliefs an agent has or the judgments he makes." Consistency, he says, i s "sticking to a principle or pursuing a policy or plan" (DR128). He says this form of consistency " i s possible for people who adhere conscientiously to a simple code," and is possible as well for people "with a complicated morality i f they care . . . i f they are passionately devoted to fairness, freedom and the pur-suit of truth, respect for persons, i f they are concerned whether others suffer" (CP298). Surely he i s right to say there i s a difference between knowing right and wrong and caring (MD329), and surely he i s right to say this type of consistency and caring i s an "important positive type of motiva-tion" (CP298). In saying these things, however, Peters implies that i f agents "know what i s right and wrong" and i f they care about others, they w i l l be able to decide and act on complex moral problems they face. 207 In my view, more i s required of the "competent moral agent": f i r s t , an a b i l i t y and disposition to appreciate the positions of others who may be affected by the agent's actions, and second, a f u l l e r grasp of moral theory to help him balance the conflicting claims and interests of those persons whose positions he "appreciates." My statement here may be denied by those who claim I am making i t too d i f f i c u l t for ordinary citizens ever to attain "moral competency." That may well be. My suggestions offer, however, "levels of attainment" towards which the "average" moral agent can st r i v e . Once we have a pic-ture of what "moral competency".looks l i k e , we can decide what moral educators might do to help average persons attain at least some of the competencies (knowledge, a b i l i t i e s and dispositions). III. Peters on the Development of Character Having commented now on Peters' two categories of character-traits --"the "social-rulTe: "variety "and: the self-control variety--'! wi-ll-^put— 1— together Peters' picture of the development of character. One of the chief tasks of moral education, he says, i s to aid i n developing peoples' "chafacfter ,""*b~y wlfich lie means" persons' who" ' have character.' -> - 1 1 — -A. Senses of 'Character' To begin, Peters quite rightly says that the concept 'character' ""i's'a "systematically '"slxppVry "'cWdeYt1'' (TC135) .' We speak -of 1 3'character' i n the following ways. In the f i r s t place, he says, we speak of a person's character i n terms of the sum to t a l of his t r a i t s : ones like "honesty," "consTdeVat'eness",'' punctuality," sincerity or laziness.''' - He calls this the "non-committal sense," although i t i s not perfectly clear what 208 he means by this (ET237; TC135). Usually when we say that a person i s honest or sincere or lazy we are positively or negatively evaluating what he does or does not do. We are not necessarily evaluating his conduct, however, from the moral point of view. wm. Hare, I believe, i s correct to suggest this (Hare, Wm., 1978). If Peters takes "non-committal" to mean evaluation but not necessarily moral evaluation, then I am in agreement with him. In a l l probability, Peters means that the notion 'character' i s non-committal, not that 'honest,' or 'sincere' are. The notion 'character' i s non-committal when compared to 'having character' which means having a good thing. Second, Peters says, we speak of 'character' i n the way character-ologists do: i n terms of "certain arrangements of tr a i t s i n persons, for example, a penurious man, or pedantic person." Freud appears to have adopted this sense of 'character' i n his writing on the subject, says Peters, since he was concerned with the range of t r a i t s which .persons display in a distorted or exaggerated manner. Third, we can speak of a person's character i n the sense of 'having character.' Here, he says, we are referring "to a type of consistency the person imposes on his other t r a i t s by his adherence to higher-order principles such as those of prudence or justice" (FT238; PC247). B. 'Having Character' Peters explicates the notion 'having character' i n terms of the inner effort individuals must make: his favorite terms for this quality are "effort," "personal choice," "decision," "control," "consistency," even "integrity." The person who 'has character,' he says, i s one who has his own distinctive style of rule-following; 'having character' 209. suggests "the type of regulation (he) imposes on his own conduct." A man who 'has character' differs from one who "merely exhibits particular character-traits l i k e honesty or truthfulness"; those who are honest or truthful "may ( s t i l l ) be at the mercy of their v a c i l l a t i n g inclinations" (PC249). Peters thinks that persons who display certain character-traits do not necessarily 'have character.' As well, he believes that persons who 'have character' need not have any particular character-traits, certainly not ones we would c a l l moral t r a i t s or habits. When we say that a man 'has .character,' we are not simply referring to the sum total of his t r a i t s . . . a man who has integrity of character i s not credited with any definite t r a i t s . . . whatever tr a i t s he exhibits there w i l l be some sort of consistency and con-t r o l in the manner i n which he exhibits them. (TC135) This i s in line with Peters' statement that the "self-control t r a i t s " are content-free: "they prescribe no particular rules or purposes" (MD314)." But let us see what this view leads to in Peters' account. Peters remarks that persons might 'have character' in the sense that they have their own distinctive styles of rule-following. But these distinctive styles "do not necessarily imply any particular rules, or content)' (PC250). The notion 'having character,' he says, i s compatible with a wide variety of types of character. I n f a c t , Peters continues, a person could have character—be persistent, have s t y l e — and " s t i l l be bad" (TC135; PC250). By this Peters does not just mean that a person who 'had character could act badly or "be bad" oh one of a few occasions; he means that a person might 'have character' and be 210 e v i l . On Peters' account, Hitler i s one we could say 'had character.' Although Peters does not speak i n terms of necessary conditions, his one necessary condition for 'having character' seems to be this: "persons must be consistently rule-governed and must adapt their.rules i n t e l l i -gently in the light of their supreme principles" (PC252). A man who acted consistently i n the light of his supreme principles — a person who 'has character'—may present an appearance of inconsistency to the world, Peters avers. But this i s because he "follows rules which seem to him to have some point; he modifies them i n t e l l i g e n t l y according to differences in circumstances,. and the point (of what rules he chooses) is determined by the man's adherence to certain higher-order principles" (TC135). Are these principles Peters' five fundamental principles? If they are, would Peters speak of a person who 'had character' who was evil? Probably not. Are these principles whatever principles the person who 'has character' chooses to act on? If this, then these principles could be ones l i k e 'I w i l l only do whatever gives me the greatest personal pleasure' or 'I choose to do that which brings the greatest pain to minority groups.' Peters' sense of 'having character' i s compatible with choosing principles which cause, or which do not prevent harm to other persons. C. Moral Education and Character Development What, then, are we to make of Peters' suggestion that an. important aim of moral education i s to develop persons who 'have character'? To answer this question, let us review what Peters says i s the "complex task of moral education," where he speaks of this as character-211 development. Peters says, f i r s t , that moral educators should be concerned with what character-traits they would l i k e people to have, that i s , what social rules they would l i k e to see "stamped upon" individuals' behaviour. Second, educators should be concerned with how children learn to apply rules: how they learn to "discriminate and use their judgment." And third, Peters says educators should be concerned with developing c h i l -drens' characters in the sense of their 'having character.' What methods, then, does Peters, select for the accomplishment of these tasks? He says that 'training character' Is an important way to look at the development of character, since this latter notion consists i n developing the self-control t r a i t s and the inculcation of social rules (MD328). The notion of 'habituation' is an important one, too, especially for the development of the "self-control" virtues. The child, he says, "must learn to stick up for principles of ' f a i r play' i n the face of group pressures." It may be necessary, he says, for c h i l -dren "to be tempted, or made fear f u l . " The more familiar children become with such situations, "the more l i k e l y they w i l l be led to control their immediate responses." Habituation, he says, "may help to lay down a pattern of response that may be used i n the service of more appropriate motives at (a child's) later stage" (MD327). To develop particular t r a i t s of the social-rule variety, the "stamping metaphor," he says i s an appropriate one. The notions of ' d r i l l ' and 'authority' are also appropriate. 'Training of character,' he says, "suggests efforts to ensure r e l i a b i l i t y of response in accord-ance with a code." But this, he admits, would be a rather limited sort 212 of operation, since i t would not suggest any endeavour to get trainees to understand the 'reason why' of things. Moral 'education,' in con-trast to 'moral training,' i s a question of "tackling peoples' b e l i e f s " (EE34; TC138). To develop character, Peters says, the notion of conflict i s an important one. "The child must learn to choose from among many possi-b i l i t i e s , " he says, and this he w i l l learn to do i f he i s introduced to various rules and made to face conflict-situations (EE198; TC137). The child must also be exposed to adult-exemplars "who can give practical reasons for their principles." We must remember, he says, that the individual's character i s "his own distinctive style of rule-following"'; the emphasis i s on the individual, "but the way he acts i s drawn from a public pool" (EE57). A man's 'character,' he says, "represents his own achievement" (EE57; PU400). The question which can be put to Peters i s this: i f he sees that one aim of moral education is character development, and i f he sees that the best way to do this i s by (a) stamping a code upon the child, (b) teaching the child to make "discriminations" about where this code (the rules) should be applied, and (c) encouraging the child to make up his own mind and stick to his decisions, what emphasis does he give to these three? In his insistence that a social code be "stamped upon" the individual, and that "training" i s an important method to use to do that, he implies that unless educators do that, they w i l l have omitted an important part of developing a child's character. This indicates to me a rather restricted analysis of what peoples' characters consist in. He could just as well have presented further analysis of what educators 2 1 3 might do to develop people who are characters. The "natural sense" for 'character-development' includes developing desirable character t r a i t s , to be sure. But we should not assume that desirable character t r a i t s w i l l result from "stamping a social code" upon people. In emphasizing as he does the individual's own choice of principles and rules in the face of conflicts he is made to face, and in drawing attention to the fact that a person could 'have character' and be bad, Peters' aim for moral education as character development i s rather con-fusing. He i s open to the charge that the goals of moral education/ character development would be attained i f the autonomous choices made by agents led them to act on principles of prudence rather than prin-ciples of morality. If he does not mean this, then he should have provided moral educators with a notion of character to which they could appeal, and which they could consistently apply. Probably Peters intends that character development i s only one aim of moral education, but he does not say what pr i o r i t y should be given to developing persons' character and what p r i o r i t y should be given to preventing harm to others, for example. * * * * * * In this chapter, I have examined Peters' notion of virtues, particularly those he cal l s the "self-control" virtues, and his notion of character. The self-control virtues, he says, are those which are exercised in the face of counter-inclinations. He mentions two kinds of counter-inclinations: outside corrupting influences and inhibiting 214 emotion-reactions. He does not distinguish between those influences which may result in an agent's acting unjustly or unfairly, and those which, i f adopted by the agent, indicate his conformist attitude to the group. I have suggested that the agent need only exercise self-control over these influences i f his not doingsso results in harm to others. Getting clear the sense of "moral" Peters intends i s important for the community in respect of i t s commitment to enforcing morality and i n i t s commitment to the protection of li b e r t y . After mentioning the inhibiting emotion reactions and the ways Peters thinks these may be overcome by the agent, I looked at " d i s i n -clinations to act on judgments" by exposing Peters'view of the'"gaps" between judgment and action. I pointed out that he i s wrong to say that an agent w i l l act on sincerely made moral judgments. There may be, i n fact, many ways of accounting for " f a i l i n g to act." One of these may be the agent's indecision in the face of conflicting principles; another may be his not knowing how to act on the sincere judgments he makes. I turn then to Peters' notion of 'having character' and his views on the development of character.as a goal of moral education. 'Having character,' he argues, i s compatible with being bad ( e v i l ) ; a necessary condition of 'having character' i s having the self-control virtues of control and consistency. A person who 'has character' i s one who makes up his own mind, and who makes his decisions in the light of principles he sees have some point. CHAPTER 6 - Moral Education and Research In the last ten years, educators have assembled many kinds of moral education materials and programs for use i n schools; as well, educators have become active participants in what is known as "moral education research." Many of these educators believe that students -can become educated into morality or moral thinking just as other educators believe students can become educated in science, history and mathematics. For many moral educators, moral education means i n i t i a t i n g students into the form of discourse called moral discourse i n such a way that these students w i l l be disposed to act morally. Their hope i s that students of moral education w i l l learn to be moral. Educators who see persons' i n i t i a t i o n into moral thinking and behaviour as the goal of moral education have occasionally acknowledged Richard Peters' contribution to the f i e l d , but have not used his discus-sions of morality and moral education i n any overt way as the basis for their school programs and research. As we have seen in this thesis, however, Peters believes that i n i t i a t i n g persons into moral thinking w i l l help dispose them to act morally. Peters' work represents, in fact, one of the few recent attempts of philosophers of education to give, a comprehensive account of what i t i s to reason in morals and what i t i s to be disposed to act for moral reasons. Peters has not made many practical recommendations for moral 215 216 education i n the s c h o o l s , nor has he considered i t h i s r e s p o n s i b i l i t y to s e l e c t problem areas f o r e m p i r i c a l r e s e a r c h study. Although he occa-s i o n a l l y r e f e r s t o rese a r c h s t u d i e s , h i s own work i s almost e n t i r e l y concerned w i t h conceptual i s s u e s i n moral e d u c a t i o n . There i s , i t should be s a i d here, a p a r t i c u l a r r i c h n e s s to P e t e r s ' w r i t i n g on moral education: i n the range of t o p i c s he covers and i n h i s many examples. But i f we are to dec i d e what s c h o o l programs or re s e a r c h hypotheses are at l e a s t c o n s i s t e n t w i t h h i s views, we should t r a c e out what are h i s best-supported theses: those suggestions most l i k e l y t o y i e l d concrete proposals f o r the " p r a c t i c e " of moral education. In Chapters 2 to 5, I have presented a s y s t e m a t i c account and ' c r i t i c i s m of P e t e r s ' views on a range of t o p i c s : moral r u l e s and p r i n -c i p l e s , the form and content of m o r a l i t y , moral m o t i v a t i o n , the r o l e of the emotions i n the moral l i f e , and the v i r t u e s of s e l f - c o n t r o l . Here I f u r t h e r condense h i s views i n order to suggest leads to educators work-i n g i n the f i e l d . I do t h i s , f i r s t , by n o t i c i n g what c o n s t r u c t i v e leads come from P e t e r s ' account; second, by drawing a t t e n t i o n to those areas of h i s account which r e q u i r e conceptual and e m p i r i c a l work, and t h i r d , by o u t l i n i n g s p e c i f i c p r o j e c t s f o r c u r r i c u l u m b u i l d e r s , teachers and.• r e s e a r c h e r s . = I." "The'"ContrIbutloh""of R. S. 'Peters t o Mor a l Education - — A.' The Development of " S e t t l e d D i s p o s i t i o n s " As we saw i n Chapters 3 and 4, P e t e r s b e l i e v e s t h a t m o r a l l y edu-c a t e d persons must have " s e t t l e d d i s p o s i t i o n s " to act 1 i n p a r t i c u l a r ways. He c a l l s these s e t t l e d d i s p o s i t i o n s " h a b i t s " ; they are ways of a c t i n g 217 automatically. But the notion of 'acting automatically' i s a problem-atic notion requiring further investigation. He does not say what happens when two such "automatic" habits or dispositions come into con-f l i c t . Nor does he say whether i t i s lo g i c a l l y impossible for them to conf l i c t . Peters i s correct to stress the development of settled dispositions. Part of being moral, surely, i s having some character-traits or disposi-tions which "embody" the basic social rules: honesty, unselfishness and considerateness. Peters does not analyze i n any de t a i l , however, the notion of a"moral rule"; and this i s a task to which educators could f r u i t f u l l y turn their attention. Peters does not present convincing arguments, moreover, for many of the social-rule character-traits he believes persons must have in order to be moral. Being honest, unselfish and considerate are closely connected with being moral; i t i s easy enough to agree with him that these t r a i t s are requirements of morality. Rules of punctuality, politeness, tidiness and chastity, on the other hand, are not require-ments for being moral. These latter rules suggest standards of behavi-our—-standards of social "gracefulness" perhaps—but educators should not confuse them with moral standards, as Peters seems to do. Educators (teachers and parents) who set out to develop the socia l -rule variety of character-traits in children should learn to distinguish, then, between long-term dispositions or habits which have centrally to do with morality and those which don't. Somewhat paradoxically, educators may have to teach youngsters to be polite or tidy on specific occasions, as part of teaching them to act with considerateness and unselfishness. Teaching children some forms of politeness as part of teaching them to be considerate to others, d i f f e r s , however, from teaching children to con-form to rules of politeness, punctuality or tidiness. Children must learn to sense when i t i s appropriate for them to be punctual or polite or t i d y — t h a t i s , when their being punctual, polite or tidy w i l l prevent harm, hurt or discomfort to persons other than themselves. But c h i l -dren should not be required to internalize rules of punctuality, p o l i t e -ness and tidiness as "settled dispositions," in order to be moral. As . well, i n i t i a t i n g children into some socially-accepted forms of poli t e -ness may actually prevent them from seeing other people as persons whose rights and interests ought (morally ought) to be'taken into account.* Before he attempts to impart these rules to others, then, the educator should learn to discriminate between those forms of politeness which, i f acted on, respect other people as persons and those which don't. If the educator insists that children be tidy.,' punctual or polite on specific occasions, he must do so i n such a way that children w i l l come to see punctuality, politeness and tidiness as empirically necessary to their avoidance and prevention of harm and discomfort to other persons. Educators should also develop programs for introducing the child to the concepts which form the basis of those rules which can j u s t i f i -ably be called moral rules. Lying, cheating, bullying, stealing, for example, can take many forms. The child should come to see which actions of his would constitute stealing or lying or promise-breaking, *Sele Chap'tre'f' 4, 'Part I.' ' T'suggest there that the "polite* act"-of opening doors for women may prevent others from seeing women as persons. 219 so that he might refrain from these actions. Although Peters says that the child's possession of many concepts (e.g., 'property, 1 'self,' and 'others') are prerequisites to the child's grasp of the concept 'steal-ing,' for example, he does not say what concepts are prerequisites to learning the other moral rules (MD325). Moral educators would do well to examine closely the moral-rules to see which concepts are prerequisite to the child's obedience to these rules. This work would be useful to educators interested i n developing elementary school curriculum materials i n moral education. Given the recent literature oh the subject of promising, for example, moral educa-tors could choose this as a beginning topic for their conceptual, curriculum-development and empirical, work. B. The Development of Motives (Principles) Peters argues that moral principles (e.g., justice, concern, com-passion, benevolence and respect) should become a person's own motives or operative reasons. He gives two reasons why he thinks persons must come to act on moral motives; f i r s t , he believes that a person must have moral motives in order to apply moral rules i n t e l l i g e n t l y ; second, he believes that having moral motives i s necessary to assessing properly the v a l i d i t y or j u s t i f i c a t i o n of the moral rules. (See Ch. 3, p. 90.) Having moral motives, Peters suggests, is not the same thing as "showing sensitivity or concern for others." A child can learn to be sensitive and caring, he says, but these feelings may not be the child's own reasons (motives) why he does some things rather than others. Peters says that i f we help to develop a child's s e n s i t i v i t i e s early on 220 in his l i f e , these se n s i t i v i t i e s may become the child's operative reasons (motives) when the child grows older (when the child "has learned to reason"). One of the best ways to develop these sensitivities,..he says, is by developing the child's Imagination in an atmosphere of reason-giving. I have earlier pointed to my d i f f i c u l t y i n accepting Peters' state-ments about the development of the child's s e n s i t i v i t i e s along with his statements about the i n a b i l i t y of children to l e t these s e n s i t i v i t i e s (concern, caring) become their operative reasons (Ch. 3). In my view, i t i s odd to talk about developing a child's concern or compassion for others by providing him with reasons for action, without also believing that the child i s learning to adopt those reasons of compassion and con-cern "as his own." It is not a logical contradiction, perhaps, to say that a child i s compassionate and caring on specific occasions, and that he has not developed a long-standing disposition to act with compassion and concern. And i t may not be a log i c a l contradiction to say that a child has these s e n s i t i v i t i e s and that he does not act for reasons of compassion and concern. ' But since our grounds for saying that a. person shows compassion or i s compassionate come from bur observations of what that person does, i t does seem l o g i c a l l y odd to say that a child has s e n s i t i v i t i e s and that he does not act for reasons of compassion and concern. If Peters' claim i s that young children can learn to be compassion-ate and caring and that they may or may not act out of motives of compassion or concern when they are older, certainly he i s correct. A l l sorts of factors can and do intervene between the early signs of compassion i n children and their later actions and reasons for action. But i f Peters' claim i s that children can learn to be compassionate and must (logically must) be older to l e t these considerations become their reasons for acting, i t seems to me that he i s just wrong. I believe-that children can learn at an early age to apply rules i n t e l l i g e n t l y i n the light of the principles of respect for persons and the consideration of others' interests, for example. This i s only i n part an empirical claim about what I have seen children do; .it i s also a claim about the grounds we must have to say that children feel compassion or respect, or that they are sensitive to others' feelings. We make inferences about their mind-states from their behaviour. Of course, i f Peters believes that children can develop s e n s i t i -v i t i e s early i n their lives but that they are unable to "make use of" these feelings to assess the j u s t i f i c a t i o n or v a l i d i t y of social rules, then surely he jLs_ correct. In order to assess the v a l i d i t y of moral rules, considerable knowledge and experience i s required of a person— l i k e l y more than children have. Regarding Peters' concern that moral motives be developed, an enormous amount of work can be done by educators to develop materials whose aim is to increase children's, adolescents' and adults' compassion and sensitivity to others. This could include the development of a "body of litera t u r e , " the encouragement of dramatic productions, and the organization of a c t i v i t i e s which involve children i n community work. I assume that these a c t i v i t i e s would be efficacious i n increasing sensi-t i v i t y , but there i s probably no guarantee that involvement in these ac t i v i t i e s does help to develop a persons' s e n s i t i v i t i e s to others. 222 In addition to developing curriculum materials for use in the schools, educators must themselves learn how to show respect for others with whom they are i n discussion, and they must somehow develop respect for persons of a l l colours, of both sexes, of every a g e — i f they do not already have this respect. Children, adolescents and adults might prefer to model their behaviour after these educator/exemplars. Part of the educator's responsibility, too, i n developing others' senses of compassion and caring i s to provide good analyses of those social conditions (school, home and community) which promote a child's sense of his own self-respect and his respect for others, and analyses of these conditions which systematically destroy'human s p i r i t and poten-t i a l for acting with compassion. The educator should not stop with "analysis" of these conditions, of course: he must work hard to improve those conditions.. Peters' specific suggestion that children's s e n s i t i v i t i e s to others can be heightened or increased by exposing children to the sight of suffering may be a good one, although I do not have any empirical evidence to confirm or deny this, and Peters provides none. The edu-cator might couple the child's exposure to suffering with suggestions to the child about what may have caused the suffering, and suggestions about what the child and others could do to alleviate suffering and prevent suffering. This teaching could be combined with discussion about "significant harms," e.g., those circumstances i n which hurting others i s permissible (e.g., to extract a tooth or remove a s l i v e r ) , and when such hurting i s not (e.g., cheating, lying, promise-breaking). In getting students of a i l ages to view matters "from the moral / 223 point of view" and to help them to be motivated by moral concerns, the educator should aim to improve the reasoning s k i l l s of his students by introducing them to ways of evidencing the empirical beliefs which bear on their moral decisions, teaching them to spot errors of deduction i n their own and others' reasoning, and teaching them what moral principles can be used as premises of their arguments (Metcalf, 1975). These tasks must be carried out with considerable care and s e n s i t i v i t y , however, so that students w i l l come to see moral reasons and the "conclusions" of moral arguments as genuinely motivating reasons for acting, rather than as opportunities for them to "score points" i n debate. Recall from Chapter 3 my statement that Peters devotes l i t t l e attention to an analysis of the so-called " l o c a l " or "rel a t i v e " rules. As I suggested there, these rules are more l i k e issues an agent must decide than standards of behaviour to which the agent must become habit-uated. Peters' l i s t of local rules displays some short-sightedness about what moral issues agents do, i n fact, face. Moral agents might have to decide whether to smoke or gamble, whether to conserve water, whether to become a member of a trade-union, whether to be usurious in money-lending. But these issues are not nearly as common or serious as those moral issues which arise when immigrants and other minorities are discriminated against, nor as important as the "morality" of l i v i n g i n unprecedented affluence while millions, at home and abroad, l i v e at subsistence levels. If agents (students) are to learn to "reason well" on moral matters, they should be challenged by issues which "touch their own l i v e s " to be sure, but issues for which the consequences to others are of great seriousness, i.e., those consequences which deprive others 224 of l i b e r t i e s and opportunities and respect. The educator's selection of "issues" (local rules)* to my mind, i s a matter of great importance i n planning moral education programs for persons of a l l ages. Students must be made aware of those situations which have serious moral consequences; they must see that moral ques-tions arise and moral debate takes place in contexts where peoples' claims, interests and wants are at stake. Unless students come to see in what circumstances i t i s important for them to "take the moral point' of view," they w i l l probably not come to see moral considerations as reasons why they should act i n certain ways and not i n others. C. The Role of the Emotions ' If a person (student) i s to develop "moral motives," he must come to see others i n some sense as the same as himself. Part of the agent's knowledge or awareness, as Peters points out, i s his a b i l i t y to recognize his own emotion states and those of others. Being motivated by moral concerns i s not just knowing that others experience pain, or not just knowing that others can become frustrated, angry.and despairing i f their desires are thwarted; being morally motivated i s , as well, caring or appreciating that others can and do experience these emotions. The fact that other persons experience certain emotions—fear, anger, frustration—should provide the moral agent with at least a prima facie reason why he and others should refrain from acting in ways that cause unhappiness and pain. And the fact that the agent himself experiences certain emotions (e.g., anger, jealousy) should provide the agent with prima facie reasons for not committing harmful acts to others. That i s , i f the agent knows that he i s jealous or angry and i f he is aware 225 that states of jealousy and anger often lead agents to hurt others, he must not allow his anger or jealousy to become reasons for or against any action toward others. In particular, he must not l e t these emotion-states be reasons for harming others. If, however, the agent recognizes his own emotion-appraisals as those of his own conscience (his internalization of rules and principles) —e.g., moral guilt and remorse—then these feelings should provide him with at least prima facie reasons for doing certain things: acting so as to put right those situations in which he has acted badly. In moral education work, the subject of the emotions and the moral emotions i s of great importance and i s ripe for much interesting concep- . tual and empirical work. As I have pointed out i n Chapter 4, however, knowing that "the emotions" (one's own and others') are relevant to moral thought and action i s not to say how they are relevant. The prob-lem for educators and moral agents i s knowing how to balance the c o n f l i c t -ing claims (interest; beliefs) of persons whose emotions they can both "read" and appreciate. Short of having a more complete theory of the moral relevance of emotions, the educator might simply have to take his clientele as far. as they can go i n understanding and appreciating their own and others' emotion-states. This, combined with introducing stu-dents to complex dilemma situations (issues), for which students' knowledge of the protagonists', emotions 123 relevant, may be as much as the educator can do to assure his students that the emotions are adequately "represented" or taken acount of i n their moral reasoning. 226 D. Conflicting Claims, Rules and Principles Peters' recommendations for the resolution of conflicting claims, rules and principles are weak. Educators should be aware of this weakness In his account, and should try to face the question of what i t i s to j u s t i f y decisions made when principles and rules come into con-f l i c t . Peters claims that conflicts between rules can be resolved by the agent's appeal to moral principles. The rule 'Do not l i e , ' for example, can and should be overridden, he says, i n those cases where t e l l i n g the truth w i l l hurt someone. He says that the principle of consideration of interests "stands as an ever-present corrective to moral rules when they confl i c t . " As we have seen i n Chapter 3, however, Peters interprets the prin-ciple of consideration of interests i n various ways; hence, i t i s not clear in what way Peters thinks that this principle provides a "correc-tive" for conflicts-of-rule. Moreover, he does not make clear why he chose this principle over the principle of respect for persons or the principle of freedom. Another problem arises, as I have mentioned frequently, with Peters' account of resolving conflicts of principle. 'Judgment,' he says, i s learned from those who have i t . This i s an interesting (and probably true) account of how a person's sense of discrimination devel-ops, but i t does not t e l l us what this discrimination i s . By what c r i t e r i a does the moral agent, determine who has 'judgment,' or 'the best judgment,1 so that he might model his behaviour after Lhat person or persons? If the agent believes that no one in his company 'has good 227 judgment 1 on moral mat ters , or i f he i s u n c e r t a i n what t h i s judgment i s , can the agent l e a r n to apply p r i n c i p l e s accord ing to some c r i t e r i a ? Can the agent, f or example, determine i f , f o r "moral" reasons , he should overr ide another i n d i v i d u a l ' s autonomy ( c o n f l i c t between respec t f o r persons and freedom) i n order to do what i s " i n that i n d i v i d u a l ' s best i n t e r e s t " or to do what i s " i n the p u b l i c i n t e r e s t " ? These a r e not easy quest ions to answer, of course , but n e i t h e r are they remote from the kinds of d e c i s i o n s moral agents face . E . S e l f - C o n t r o l P e t e r s ' w r i t i n g on the " s e l f - c o n t r o l v i r t u e s " presents us w i th some d i f f i c u l t i e s . He i s unsystematic i n h i s treatment of t h i s group of " v i r t u e s , " l e a v i n g them almost completely unanalyzed. The problem f o r the reader i s to determine what Peters means when he speaks o f these v i r t u e s as v i r t u e s of " s e l f - c o n t r o l " ; f u r t h e r , what Peters means when he says that an agent should exerc i se s e l f - c o n t r o l i n order to ac t m o r a l l y . Peters says that the moral agent should r e s i s t bad or c o r r u p t i n g inf luences ( l i k e b r i b e r y ) , that he should r e s i s t f l a t t e r y , that he should "be h i s own person ," that he should overcome i n h i b i t i n g emotions l i k e fear and anger, that he should use moral language wi th s i n c e r i t y , that he should determinedly and p e r s i s t e n t l y act on the moral judgments he makes — a l l t h i s , apparent ly , i n order to "act on what he sees to be j u s t . " Obv ious ly , P e t e r s ' examples of " s e l f - c o n t r o l v i r t u e s " are of many d i f f e r e n t k i n d s . Although we can probably agree wi th him that some " s e l f - c o n t r o l " i s a d e s i r a b l e , even necessary t r a i t of the competent moral agent, P e t e r s ' treatment of t h i s c l a s s of v i r t u e s i l l u s t r a t e s some confusion about what may be r e q u i r e d of i n d i v i d u a l s i n order that they 2 2 8 be well-developed or s e l f - f u l f i l l e d (autonomous and r a t i o n a l ) , and what may be required of autonomous moral agents, where "moral" means acting so as to avoid and prevent harms to others. The educator must at least be aware that the claim 1 i n d i v i d u a l s should exercise s e l f - c o n t r o l i n order to be moral' can be variously interpreted. He must learn to discriminate between those vir t u e s which may be es s e n t i a l to persons' s e l f - f u l f i l l m e n t and those which are essen-t i a l f o r persons to act on moral judgments, i . e . , those judgments to do with the avoidance and prevention of harm to persons. In classroom discussion, the teacher could point out to h i s stu-dents that the community might consider i t t h e i r moral r e s p o n s i b i l i t y , to intervene i n i n d i v i d u a l s ' a f f a i r s i f i n d i v i d u a l s are not exercising s e l f -c o ntrol. He could point out the dangers of intervening i n i n d i v i d u a l l i b e r t i e s and r i g h t s . The educator could help h i s students to see i n what circumstances i t seems morally j u s t i f i a b l e f o r the community (other moral agents) to i n t e r f e r e with persons' l i b e r t i e s (when those persons are themselves harming others), and when i t i s probably not morally j u s t i f i e d f o r the community to i n t e r f e r e with persons i f these persons are "pursuing t h e i r own i n t e r e s t s . " To conduct these discussions w e l l , • of course, the teacher must have a f a i r l y sophisticated grasp of the notions of morality and l i b e r t y . . In other words', teachers must be ade-quately prepared to lead such discussions; and t h i s suggests the preparation of curriculum materials for both teacher-education and school classroom work. To help his students overcome " i n h i b i t i n g emotion-appraisals," the educator might point out to h i s students those si t u a t i o n s ( i n l i t e r a t u r e 2 2 9 and i n cur r e n t a f f a i r s ) where i n d i v i d u a l s and groups overcame t h e i r f e a r s and a n x i e t i e s to do what they thought was r i g h t . The teacher might a l s o engage h i s students i n d i s c u s s i o n of t h e i r own f e a r s and a n x i e t i e s . But i t i s u n c e r t a i n whether these a c t i v i t i e s would have the d e s i r e d e f f e c t . , I do not agree w i t h P e t e r s , however, t h a t c h i l d r e n must be made f e a r f u l or p u r p o s e f u l l y tempted t o do what i s wrong as p a r t of t e a c h i n g them to overcome these i n h i b i t i n g i n c l i n a t i o n s . I n my view, t h e r e are numerous s i t u a t i o n s i n the c h i l d ' s l i f e which are f e a r - i n d u c i n g or which do tempt him, without educators d e l i b e r a t e l y making a c h i l d f e e l f e a r f u l or tempted. P r a i s i n g the c h i l d f o r r e s i s t i n g these i n f l u e n c e s i s , how-ever, another matter: the educator's p r a i s e might help the c h i l d to overcome h i s f e a r s and develop h i s courage. T h i s , however, i s an e m p i r i c a l problem; and as P e t e r s suggests, i t cou l d do w i t h some study. In general though, I share P e t e r s ' s k e p t i c i s m about what educators can do to help students overcome t h e i r f e a r s and a n x i e t i e s i n order to get them to act on t h e i r moral judgments. In g e t t i n g students to f o l l o w through or act on the moral judgments they make, educators should know of the f a c t o r s which t y p i c a l l y i n t e r v e n e between persons' moral judgments and t h e i r d i s p o s i t i o n s to act on t h e i r moral judgments. They should know, f o r example, t h a t persons can be d e f l e c t e d from doing what they t h i n k i s r i g h t by peer pr e s s u r e , and t h a t they can be i n h i b i t e d by t h e i r l a c k of courage i n the face of danger. In a d d i t i o n , educators should be aware t h a t making d e c i s i o n s about moral matters i s o f t e n an extremely complicated and demanding b u s i n e s s , and t h a t o f t e n , persons' " f a i l u r e t o a c t " can be e x p l a i n e d by t h e i r d i f f i c u l t i e s i n coming t o " a l l - t h i n g s - c o n s i d e r e d " moral judgments. T h i s 230 being the case, the educator should devote time to helping students make well-grounded decisions on moral matters. One way to do this i s to help students evidence the empirical questions which bear on the moral problems he asks students to face. For most moral problems, this i s a long and arduous task; and certainly teachers and students can never claim to have " a l l the evidence." But teaching students how to evidence their empirical beliefs could show the student that he should not "take a position" on an issue unless there are good grounds for the position he takes. When teachers and students are satisfied, however, that they do have sufficient evidence to "make well-grounded decisions" on moral issues, they should make those decisions, then explore the ways both teachers and students can act on those decisions. For some issues, e.g., discrimination against East Indian residents by local neighbourhoods, students should be shown how to channel their energies into helping those persons discriminated against, rather than aiding those persons who are causing harms. For other issues—those which arise because of particular government policies ;—students can be introduced to ways citizens can pro-pose legi s l a t i o n and register their protests against l e g i s l a t i o n they believe w i l l have morally unacceptable consequences for segments of the population. This information and action would be a start, at least, on the students' p o l i t i c a l education; and i t would serve to show students that to act on some moral decisions may mean engaging i n p o l i t i c s and. governmental a f f a i r s . II. Remaining Conceptual and Empirical Issues i n Peters Having given a general outline of what, things educators might do using Peters' analysis o'f morality and moral education, I turn now to those conceptual and empirical issues from Peters' account which require more work. While I believe that educators can proceed at once along the lines I have outlined i n the previous section, i t should be clear that there are a number of emphases in.Peters' account requiring consid-erably more conceptual and empirical study. A. Conceptual Issues and Peters' Account of Morality 1. The Scope of Moral Education In Chapter 2 (pp. 4 1 f f . ) } I offered several interpretations of Peters' claim that the i n i t i a t i o n of persons into worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s i s a moral matter. Two of these interpretations—the general or "ethical education" view, and the requirements-for-avoiding-harm view— offer different emphases for the scope of moral education. The fourth (ethical education) interpretation makes moral education v i r t u a l l y coextensive with general education, while the f i f t h r e s t r i c t s moral education to helping persons avoid/harm to others. I suggested that i f educators adopt the f i f t h (narrower) sense of moral education, they may . consider that getting persons to become i n i t i a t e d into at least some "worthwhile a c t i v i t i e s " i s an empirically necessary way of getting these persons to be "morally educated" (avoidance of harm sense). Throughout this thesis, I have interpreted a l l of Peters' claims about morality and moral education i n terms of the narrower view of moral education. This reflects not only my own view about what moral-it y i s and what moral education should be about, but this approach i s 232 consistent with Peters' statements that his primary concern i s with "rules and principles of an interpersonal sort." As we saw i n Chapter 5, however, Peters vacillates between talk of those virtues necessary to becoming autonomous, rational agents and those virtues necessary to the prevention of harms. I suggested i n that chapter that i t i s possible to think of persons who are autonomous and rational, and who are not disposed to avoid and prevent harms to others. Much work could be done to uncover, the grounds for saying that morality (and moral education) should be concerned, centrally, with avoiding and preventing harm. This i s not to say that such an under-taking should hold up (impede) conceptual, curriculum-development and research work consistent with the avoidance-of-harm view. But an investigation of these grounds (in the writing of J. S. M i l l , for example), would prepare educators to defend the narrower conception of 'morality,' when i t is opportune for them to do so. This would be better, i n my view, than adopting the avoidance of harm sense, without knowing the grounds for this choice. In my experience, discussions of morality and moral education in terms of the avoidance and prevention of harms to persons usually lead to considerations of giving benefits and helping others. Moral educa-tors would do well to be clearer than they are on the conceptual con-nections between the notions 'preventing harms,' 'not causing harm,' 'helping,' 'giving benefits.' Cases which distinguish these notions would be helpful. 2. Moral Rules and Moral Motives The second topic requiring more conceptual work, as I have said in Part I of this chapter, i s the subject of 'moral rules' and those con-cepts which are central to the moral rules. Part of this analytical work could center on the differences there are between moral rules and legal rules (laws), customs, conventions and habits; another part of this work could address the question 'What does i t mean to say that moral rules exist?' Peters says that habits which embody the moral rules imply a kind of "directedness"; habits, however, do not imply, particular "goals" towards which these actions (habits) are directed. On the other hand, the notion of a 'motive' (operative reason) implies both "directedness" and the notion of a goal or goals towards which an agent's actions are directed. Put into the language of "reasons," Peters' suggestion i s that having habits (conforming to moral rules) i s acting for certain reasons; these reasons, however, need not be the agent's "own." Having motives or reasons for acting, on the other hand, means adopting partic-ular reasons as one's own. In my opinion, time could be f r u i t f u l l y spent by educators! i n anal-ysis of the differences between the notions "acting f o r — i n conformity, with—(other's) reasons" and "acting for reasons of one's own." For this work, the literature on the differences between "conforming to a rule" and "obeying a rule" i s relevant (Green 1967; McClellan, 1967). 3. The Concept of a 'Person' In Chapter 4, I mentioned that i f the agent sees that other people do experience emotions, that i s , i f he comes to see other people as persons, he w i l l l i k e l y refrain from these acts which are harmful to these persons. The concept 'person' requires some conceptual work, beginning with a review a r t i c l e outlining the approaches various writers have taken i n their work on this concept. Some of the analytical work on the concept 'person' might center on the concept of an 'emotion.' Other work might center on the notion of a 'right,' in particular the arguments which have been put forward on j u s t i f i e d and unjustified interference i n persons' rights. 4. Moral Component Schemes In recent times, groups of moral educators have put forward three different "moral component schemes"': John Wilson of the Oxford project (Wilson, 1973), Paul Hirst of Cambridge (1974), and AVER of Vancouver, Canada (AVER, 1975).* These three l i s t s of moral components—"the components of moral competency"—reflect what the authors believe are logically necessary a b i l i t i e s , knowledge, s k i l l s and dispositions of competent moral agents. The authors have drawn up these l i s t s of moral competencies to enable educators to proceed with the conceptual and empirical work necessary for curriculum work and teaching: the l i s t s represent the parcelling out of a b i l i t i e s and knowledge, etc., so that research and curriculum development in this f i e l d w i l l proceed in a somewhat orderly fashion. Apart from some comments on Wilson's l i s t of components (see Brent, 1973), there have been no attempts to systematically examine and c r i t i c i z e these three schemes and the theoretical bases from which they *See Appendix. 235 have been constructed. To engage i n this conceptual task would be highly interesting and enlightening to others in moral education. From Hirst's discussion of morality and from his l i s t of moral components we see his attempt to build from Peters' account of morality. Wilson, on the other hand, e x p l i c i t l y acknowledges the work of R. M. Hare; this i s particularly evident in Component PHIL (CC) (Hare, 1952, 1963). AVER's components A and B are based on Singer's account of the Generalization Principle (similar to Peters' Principle of Equality or Justice) and Singer's account of the Generalization Argument (Singer, 1971). AVER component D, however, reflects.Hare's analysis of "imag-inative role-taking" (Hare, 1963). B. Empirical Issues and Peters' Account 1. The Question of Non-Rational Means In Chapter 4, I looked at Peters' treatment of the "paradox" of moral education. One version of the paradox was put as follows: 'What non-rational means aid, or at least, do not impede, the development of a rational form of morality?' This question suggests that educators must balance the use of rational (reason-giving) means and the use of "non-cognitive" ("non-rational") means in morally educating persons. By "non-cognitive" or "non-rational" methods, Peters means the use of "conditioning aids," e.g., praise, blame, approval and disapproval. Peters stresses that some non-rational or non-cognitive means must be used as supplementary to the use of reasons, even as prerequisites to the (effective) use of reason, since he believes that young children cannot understand reasons. They cannot act for their own reasons, he believes, u n t i l they have conformed their behaviour to others' reasons (rules). 236 What n o n - r a t i o n a l means, he asks, should be used to help the c h i l d become an autonomous moral agent? He views t h i s q u e s t i o n as an e m p i r i c a l matter, s i n c e he leaves the working out of t h i s i d e a to e m p i r i c a l r e s e a r c h e r s . Researchers, a c t i n g on h i s l e a d , might want to exp l o r e the q u e s t i o n of how much punishment or how much p r a i s e w i l l a i d or impede c h i l d r e n from becoming m o r a l l y autonomous. But t h i s q u e s t i o n , they should know, i s not an easy one t o t r a n s l a t e i n t o o p e r a t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n s or e m p i r i c a l hypotheses. What c o n s t i t u t e s " n o n - r a t i o n a l means" as opposed to " r a t i o n a l " means i s ambig-uous: the l i n e between them probably cannot be n e a t l y drawn. Reasoning w i t h a c h i l d has some " c o n d i t i o n i n g " e f f e c t s on the c h i l d . The c h i l d who i s c o n t i n u a l l y reasoned w i t h l i k e l y has an in c r e a s e d r e s p e c t f o r h i m s e l f — a t l e a s t an in c r e a s e d r e s p e c t f o r h i s own powers of reason. Reasoning w i t h a c h i l d about moral mat t e r s , then, might w e l l have the same r e s u l t s as p r a i s i n g him f o r deeds he does w e l l ; moreover reasoning w i t h him i s o f t e n accompanied by p r a i s e , and sometimes i s i n d i s t i n g u i s h -able from p r a i s e . I f e m p i r i c a l p s y c h o l o g i s t s see the q u e s t i o n of n o n - r a t i o n a l means as a v i a b l e one f o r research study, they would do w e l l to exp l o r e i n some d e t a i l the no t i o n s of " r a t i o n a l " and " n o n - r a t i o n a l means" and the n o t i o n of mixed r a t i o n a l / n o n - r a t i o n a l means before they embark on t h e i r e m p i r i c a l work. I f i n d t h a t another q u e s t i o n , namely, 'What r a t i o n a l means h e l p c h i l d r e n to reach a r a t i o n a l form of m o r a l i t y ? ' suggests more f r u i t f u l l i n e s of i n q u i r y . In an attempt t o answer t h i s q u e s t i o n , moral educa-t o r s could e x p l o r e the ways i n which reasons c o u l d be presented to 237 children so that they both understand these reasons and come to act on them. Part of this work would involve detailed studies of the ways children reason about moral matters; another part would be teaching educators (teachers, parents) how to respond to children's moral claims and arguments. Such work would seem to me to be amenable to research work: hypothesis formation and f i e l d study. 2. The Question of Reasoning A b i l i t i e s Peters i s caught up, to some extent, i n the lock-step stage-developmental account of children's reasoning a b i l i t i e s adumbrated by Piaget and "confirmed" by the moral education researcher Kohlberg. Although Peters presents many criticisms of the Piaget/Kohlberg account of moral development, he r e l i e s on findings from' this school of psychol-ogists for the recommendations he makes about when and how a child can reason about moral matters. He repeatedly says that a child must con-form his behaviour to rules before he can be obedient to them, although he does say that i t i s not a conceptual truth that children conform because of the fear of punishment before they conform because of the desire for praise (PK150). Nevertheless, as we have seen, Peters strongly recommends that a child be habituated to rules before he can act for moral motives. He gives evidence that he believes a child cannot act from moral motives from an early age. The question of " a b i l i t i e s to reason" should be of some concern to moral educators. But this question cannot just be settled by empirical means unless a goodly amount of prior conceptual work i s done on the notion of what i t i s to reason, and what i t i s to follow reason. The notion of following or acting for particular reasons cannot be 238 interpreted in the uncomplicated way of "giving what one thinks i s one's reason for acting." If this were the sole c r i t e r i o n of what i t is to act for one's "own" reasons, children would probably f a i l the test. The question of what levels of competency adolescents and adults can reach in their reasoning i s also an important and relevant question for moral educators. Educator/researchers might spend some time study-ing the ways in which adolescents and adults reason on moral matters so that these educators might see what reasoning errors are commonly com-mitted. From this work, educators could begin to put together what should be done to get adults to eliminate these reasoning errors, particularly where their reasoning errors lead or could lead to signif-icant harms for other persons. III. Curriculum-Development and Research In this country, there i s now only a handful of teachers who are able to deal competently with moral issues when they arise in their classrooms. In order to set into motion any large-scale school moral education programs, therefore, many more teachers should be educated into moral thinking (Green, 1976). The suggestions I make below for the improvement of moral education in the schools center on the develop-ment of teacher-education materials. . Some of these materials could and perhaps should include curriculum units for students with whom teachers would eventually be working. Teachers should be given much practice i n helping students to view issues and current problems from "the moral point of view." To do this, materials should be prepared showing both the teacher and the students how to engage in moral reasoning. Part of this task consists in expos-ing teachers to the many different kinds of reasons people offer for the positions they take on moral issues; another part consists i n helping them to distinguish moral from non-moral reasons. This survey of reasons need not be gleaned from empirical studies of the reasons people typically give, although i t may be.. Educators might follow Singer's suggestion (Singer, 1974), and set out the different ways people could reason about issues, accompanied by statements about what reasons are better than others and why some reasons are better than others. Second, teachers should be introduced to the different ways in which an educator/teacher might deal with moral issues when they arise in the classroom, and the ways in which adults, for example, do and could engage in "moral discourse." The best way to do this, I believe, is through video-taped or filmed sequences which are accompanied by either video-taped or written analysis. Again, the preparation of these materials need not come from filmed sequences i n real classrooms, although they may be. Studio productions are probably just as useful. Third, teachers should be given some prepared lessons and curric-ulum units on topics i n moral education,* so that they might see how to. do short-term and long-term planning on particular topics. Teachers should also be encouraged to prepare their own moral education units', and to revise them in the light of systematic yet sympathetic criticism from those of more expert status. Teachers and teacher-educators might also work together to determine what parts of the existing school *As samples, see the AVER units on Prejudice, The Elderly, and War 240 curriculum are suited for discussions of morality. Working together, these people might prepare lessons on moral concepts (e.g., 'rights') which could be used at various points in the structured curriculum. In my view, i t makes l i t t l e sense to engage i n large research studies of moral development, unless there are teachers who are well-prepared to handle moral discourse when i t arises i n their classrooms. At this time, I believe that i t i s wiser for moral education researchers to engage i n short-term research and development projects designed to improve the.moral competencies of teachers, parents and school counsellors. This -is not to say that work need lag on the preparation of materials to be used by children and adolescents i n the schools. Much good work has been done here already. In preparing moral education materials for children and adolescents, educators ought seriously to consider writing good fictionalized accounts (e.g., books, short stories, plays) which feature persons engaged in moral reasoning. Educators could also encourage this kind of production from those who they are attempting to morally educate. This kind of assignment might well cap-ture the "moral imagination" of both school students and their teachers, in ways more effective than ordinary didactic/discussion methods. BIBLIOGRAPHY I. Works by R. S. Peters A. Books Peters, R. S. The Concept of Motivation. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1958. . Ethics and Education. London: George Allen & Unwin, 1966. . Reason and Compassion. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1973. _, ed. Authority, Responsibility and Education. (1959) London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974. Rev.ed. , ed. The Concept of Education. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1967. , ed. The Philosophy of Education. London: Oxford University Press, 1973. , ed. Psychology and Ethical Development. London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974. Peters, R. S., and.S. I. Benn. Social Principles and the Democratic . State. London: Macmillan, 1959. Peters, R. S., R. F. Dearden, and P. H. Hirst, eds. Education and the  Development of Reason. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1972. Peters, R. S., and P. Hirst. The Logic of Education. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1970. B. Articles Peters, R. S. "Behaviourism," in R. S. Peters, ed., i n Psychology and  Ethical Development. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. 46-77. . "Cause, Cure and Motives," Analysis. 11(1958):103-109. . "Concrete Principles and the Rational Passions," in R. S. Peters, ed., Psychology and Ethical Development. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. 281-302. 241 . "Destiny and Determinism," in R. S. Peters, ed., Authority, Responsibility and Education. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974, rev. ed.), pp. 65-70. 1st ed. 1959. . "The Development of Reason," i n R. S. Peters, ed., Psychology and Ethical Development. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. . 119-150. . "The Education of the Emotions," i n R. S. Peters, ed., Psychology and Ethical Development. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. 174-192. . "Education as I n i t i a t i o n , " in R. S. Peters, ed., Authority, Responsibility. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. 81-107. . "Emotions, Passivity and the Place of Freud's Theory i n Psychology," i n B. Wolman and E. Nagel, eds., S c i e n t i f i c Psychology. (New York: Basic Books, 1965), pp. 57-99. - "Emotions and the Category of Passivity," Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society; 62(l961):117-34. ." "Form and Content in Moral Education," in R. S. Peters, ed., Authority, Responsibility and Education. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. 140-156. . "Freedom and the Development of the Free Man," in R. S.. Peters ed., Psychology and Ethical Development. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. 336-359. . "Freud's Theory of Moral Development i n Relation to that of Piaget," i n R. S. Peters, ed., Psychology and Ethical Development. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. 231-244. . "In Defence of Bingo: A Rejoinder," i n B r i t i s h Journal of Educational Studies. 15(1967):188-194. • "The Justification of Education," i n R. S. Peters, ed., The Philosophy of Education. (London: Oxford University Press, 1973), pp. 239-267./ _. "Michael Oakeshott's Philosophy of. Education," i n R. S. Peters, ed., Psychology and Ethical Development. (London: George Allen '& Unwin, 1974), pp. 433-456. . "Moral Development and Moral Learning," in R; S. Peters, ed., Psychology and Ethical Development. (London: George Allen & Unwin,.1974), pp. 360-388. "Moral Education and the Psychology of Character," in R. S. Peters, ed., Psychology and Ethical Development. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. 244-264. 243 . "More about Motives," Mind. 76(1967):92-97. _. "Motivation, Emotion and the Conceptual Schemes of Common Sense," in R. S. Peters, ed., Psychology and Ethical Development. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. 87-118. :. "Motives and Causes," Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society Supplement. 26(1952):146-147. . "Motives and Motivation," Philosophy. 31(1956):117-120. . "Personal Understanding and Personal Relationships," in R. S. Peters, ed., Psychology and Ethical Development. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. 389-412. . "The Place of Kohlberg's Theory i n Moral Education," i n Journal of Moral Education. 7(1977):147-157. . "Reason and Habit: the Paradox of Moral Education," in R. S. Peters, ed., Psychology and Ethical Development. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. 265-280. . "Reason and Passion," i n R. S. Peters, ed., Psychology and Ethical Development. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. 151-173. . "Reply to Kohlberg," i n Phi Delta Kappan. 56(1975):678. . "Subjectivity and Standards," i n R. S. Peters, ed., Psychology and Ethical Development. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. 413-432. . "Training Intellect and Character," i n R. S. Peters, ed., Authority, Responsibility and Education. (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974), pp. 132-139. _______ "What is an Educational Process?" i n R. S. Peters, ed., The Concept of Education. (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1967), pp. 1-23. Peters, R. S., and A. P h i l l i p s G r i f f i t h s . "The Autonomy of Prudence," Mind. 71(1962):161-180. 244 II. Secondary Sources Abelson, R. Persons. London: The MacMillan Press, 1977. Alston, W. "Emotion and Feeling," in Paul Edwards, ed., Encyclopedia  of Philosophy. 2(1967a):479-486. Alston, W. "Motives and Motivation," i n Paul Edwards, ed., Encyclopedia  of Philosophy. 5(1967b):339-409. Association for Values Education and Research (AVER). "Canada Council Proposal for Research Money," Vancouver, B.C.: Faculty of Education, 1975. Mimeo. Association for Values Education and Research (AVER). The Elderly. Toronto: OISE Publications, 1978. Association for Values Education and Research (AVER). Prejudice; Teacher's Manual. Toronto: OISE Publications, 1978. Association for Values Education and Research (AVER) . Reports //1-7. Vancouver, B.C.: Faculty of Education, U.B.C., 1970-78. Mimeo. Association for Values Education and Research (AVER). War. Toronto: OISE Publications. In press. Baier, K. "Review of Peters' Ethics and Education," Harvard Educational  Review. 37(1967):701-703. Bedford, E. "Emotions," in D. F. Gustafson, ed., Essays i n Philosophical  Psychology. (Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday and Co., 1964), pp. 77-98 Brent, A. "Can Wilson's Moral C r i t e r i a be Justified?" in Journal of  Moral Education. 2(1973):203-210. Browne, D. A. "Reasons, Motives and Causes." Ph.D. thesis, University of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1970. Bruneau, S. "Moral Reasoning and the Consideration of Interests." Paper presented at the Canadian Society for the Study of Education, Fredericton, N.B., 1977. Bruneau, S. "Reason, Reciprocity and Role-exchange." Paper presented at the Canadian Society for the Study of Education, London, Ont., 1978. Cochrane, D., and D. Williams. "The Stances of Provincial Ministries of Education towards Values/Moral Education i n Public Schools,1' in Can. J. of Education. 3(1978):1-14. 245 Coombs, J. R. "The Cognitive Decision Approach to Moral Education: Its Problems and Prospects," i n Cognitive Decision Theorists' Approach to  Moral/Citizenship Education. (Moral/Citizenship Education Confer-ence, Philadelphia, Pa., June, 1976; published by Research for Better Schools, Philadelphia, Pa., 1978), pp. 1-41. Coombs, J. R. "Concerning the Nature of Moral Competency," i n Yearbook  of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education. 2(1975):7-20. Coombs, J. R., and L. B. Daniels. "Teachers, Moral Education and the Public Schools," in T. Morrison and A. Burton, eds., Issues and  Alternatives i n Canadian Education. (Toronto: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1973), pp. 158-170. Davidson, D. "Actions, Reasons and Causes," in H. S. Broudy, R. H. Ennis, and L. I. Krimerman, eds.,. Philosophy of Educational Research. (New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1973), pp. 459-473. Reprinted from Journal of Philosophy, 60(1963). Dearden, R. F. The Philosophy of Primary Education. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1968. Downie, R. S., and E. Telfer. Respect for Persons. London: George Allen & Unwin, 1969. Edel, A. "Review of Peters' Ethics and Education," in Studies in  Philosophy and Education. 6(1968):22-34. Falk, W. "Morality, Self and Others," i n K. Pahel and M. S c h i l l e r , eds., Readings in Contemporary Ethical Theory. (Englewood C l i f f s , N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1970), pp. 360-390. Frankena, W. "The Concept of Morality," in K. Pahel and M. Schiller, eds., Readings i n Contemporary Ethical Theory. (Englewood C l i f f s , N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1970), pp. 391-398. Gert, B. The Moral Rules. New York: Harper & Row, 1966. . . Green, T. F. "Indoctrination and Beliefs," i n I. A. Snook, ed., Concepts  of Indoctrination. (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1972), pp. 25-46 Green, T. F. "Teaching, Acting and Behaving," in B. Paul Komisar and C. J. B. Macmillan, eds., Psychological Concepts i n Education. (Chicago: Rand McNally, 1967), pp. 193-210. Green, T. F. "Teacher Competence as Practical Rationality," Proceedings  of the Philosophy of Education Society. 1976, pp. 8-20. Hare, R. M. The Language of Morals. London: Oxford University Press, 1952. 246 Hare, R..M. Freedom and Reason. London: Oxford University Press, 1963. Hare, W. "Education and Character Development," in Journal of Moral  Education. 2(1973):115-120. Hirst, P. Moral Education in a Secular Society. London: University of London Press, 1974. Judge, H. "Was Peters Nearly Right?" Reporter. University of London  Institute of Education. No. 17 (June, 1977):l-4. Kazepides, A. "Operant Conditioning in Education," Canadian Journal of  Education. 1(1976):53-68. Kazepides, A. "What is the Paradox of Moral Education?" Proceedings of  the Philosophy of Education Society. (1968):117-184. Kleinig, R. S. "R. S. Peters' Use of Transcendental Arguments," Proceedings of the Philosophy of Education Society of Great Britain. 7(1973):149-165. Kohlberg, L. "From Is to Ought: How to Commit the Naturalistic Fallacy and Get Away with It i n the Study of Moral Development," i n T. Mischel, ed., Cognitive Development and Epistemology. (New York: Academic Press, 1971), pp. 151-232. Komisar, B. Paul, and J. R. Coombs. "The Concept of Equality in Educa-tion," i n J. Park,!ed., Selected Readings i n the Philosophy of  Education. (New York: The MacMillan Publishing Co., 1974, rev.ed.), pp. 89-110. Reprinted from Studies i n Philosophy and Education, 3(1964):223-244. Metcalf, L., ed. Values Education. 41st Yearbook of the National Council f o r the Social Studies. Washington, D.C.: NCSS, 1975. McClellan, J. "Reply to Coombs' 'Cognitive Decision Approach to Moral Education'." Moral Education/Citizenship Conference, Philadelphia, Pa., June, 1976, unpublished. McClellan, J/. "B. F. Skinner's Philosophy of Human Nature," in B. Paul Komisar and C. J. B. Macmillan, eds., Psychological Concepts i n Education. (Chicago: Rand McNally, 1967), pp. 249-256. Nagel, T. The Po s s i b i l i t y of Altruism. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1970. Nielson, K. "Problems of Ethics," in Paul W. Edwards, ed., Eacyclopedia  of Philosophy. (New York: MacMillan Publishing Company, 1967), 3:117-134. Nowell-Smith, P.H. Ethics. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, 1954. 247 Oliver, R. G. "R. S. Peters and the Four Paradoxes of Moral Education," unpublished paper. -Pahel, K. "Moral Motivation," i n Journal of Moral Education. 5(1976): 223-230. Parkinson, S. "Moral Principles and Moral Education," M.A. thesis, University of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1974. . Raths, L., M. Harmin, and S. Simon. Values and Teaching. Columbus, Ohio: Charles M e r r i l l , 1966. Ryle, C. The Concept of Mind. Harmondswbrth: Penguin Books, 1968. 1st ed. 1949. Singer, M. Generalization i n Ethics. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1961. Singer, M. "The Teaching of Introductory Ethics," The Monist. 58(1974) 616-629. Snook, I. A., ed. Concepts of Indoctrination. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1972. Snook, I. A. Indoctrination and Education. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1972. Strawson, P. F. "Social Morality and Individual Ideal," i n K. Pahel and M. Schiller, eds., Readings in Contemporary Ethical Theory. Englewood C l i f f s , N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1970), pp. 344-359. Strawson, P. F. Freedom and Resentment. London: Oxford University Press, 1963. Warnock, C. J. Contemporary Moral Philosophy. London: St. Martin's Press, 1967. White, J. P. "Indoctrination," i n R. S. Peters, ed., The Concept of  Education. (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1967), pp. 177-191. Williams, B. A. 0. Morality and the Emotions. London: Bedford College, 1965. Williams, B. A. 0. "The Idea of.Equality," i n J. Fineberg, eds., Moral  Concepts. (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1969), pp. 153-171. Wilson, J. The Assessment of Morality. London: NFER, 1973. Wilson, J. "Motivation and Morality," Journal of Moral Education. 2(1972):25-30. 248 Wilson, J.. Philosophy and Educational Research. London: NFER, 1972. Wilson, J. Practical Methods of Moral Education. London: Heinemann Educational Books, Ltd., 1972. Wilson, J. Reason and Morals. London: Cambridge University Press, 1961. Wright, D. "Motivation and Morality: a response to John Wilson," Journal of Moral Education. 2(1972):31-34. 249 APPENDIX I Richard. S. Peters; Some Biographical Notes A. The Career of R. S. Peters* Richard Peters currently holds the chair i n Philosophy of Education at the University of London Institute of Education. He has held that chair since 1962, to which he moved from his fifteen-year long position as lecturer and reader i n philosophy, psychology and education at Birkbeck College, University.of London. He has written in the fields of psychology, philosophy and education, and his influence, particularly among professors and students of philosophy of education, has been enormous. His preoccupations with religion f i r s t started him on the doing of philosophy. But as he became initia t e d into the subject matter of philosophy, his interest i n the.problems of philosophical psychology grew. His doctoral thesis, entitled "The Logic of Psychological Inquir-ies," examined three major emphases in psychology: Piagetian develop-mentalism, Freudian theory, and Behaviourism. Peters was influenced by the work done on human motivation and psychological explanation by his thesis supervisor, Sir Alec Mace. Peters' own work, however, represented a significant departure from Mace's own point of view. By Peters' own account, the writings and personalities of Mace, Popper, Ayer, Passmore and Ryle had considerable influence on him. *The information in this section was taken from the preface to R. S. Peters (ed.) Psychology and Ethical Development. London: George Allen & Unwin, 1974. 250 When he moved to the Institute of Education to work in the f i e l d of philosophy of education, he concluded that l i t t l e significant work had been done on the concepts peculiar to the study of education, save that done by Louis Arnaud Reid and Michael Oakeshott of London and by. Israel Scheffler of Harvard. Peters' abiding interest in problems on the borderline of philosophy and psychology was evident i n his early writing on the concepts 'education' and 'teaching.' He continued to provide expository and c r i t i c a l comments on the three psychological theories which had interested him earlier, two of which—Piagetian and Freudian theory^-he considered to be complementary to the other. He also wrote on the relationship between psychology and teaching. He presented criticisms of the theories of B. F. Skinner and Carl Rogers; in so doing he attempted some definition of his own position. B. The Publishing Record of Peters Beginning with the editorship of Brett's History of Psychology (1952) and his own book Hobbes (1956),.Peters' publishing career has been impressive. He has co-authored two books, one with Benn in 1959, Social Principles and the Democratic State, the other with Paul Hirst in 1970, The Logic of Education. He has co-edited another with Dearden and H^rst (Education and the Development of Reason, 1972) and has been the sole editor of several others, among them The Concept of Education, (1967) and The Philosophy of Education (1973). Accounts of ethical development have always interested Peters, he says, "in both theoretical and practical ways." Many of his papers, i n fact, examine theories i n the fi e l d s of ethical and developmental 251 psychology. He describes his work as "a philosophical approach to psychology: how man should l i v e and how human behaviour should be explained." His book Ethics and Education (1966) i s widely known among educa-tors, while his earlier book The Concept of Motivation (1958) i s widely known among philosophers. In 1974, twenty of his major papers on morality and moral educa-tion were collected together in an edited volume entitled Psychology and  Ethical Development. This volume provided much of the primary source material for this thesis. In 1971 and 1972, Peters delivered the Lindsay Memorial Lectures at the University of Keele. These lectures were published in 1973 as Reason and Compassion. Another collection of art i c l e s , Authority, Responsibility and Education, f i r s t published i n 1959, has been widely used by those who teach the foundations of.education. This book i s now in i t s third edition. Recently, Peters' edited volume Dewey  Reconsidered (1977), and his own volume Education and the Education of  Teachers (1977) have been added to the l i s t . As well, Peters continues ' to write numerous ar t i c l e s , book reviews, short essays and addresses. APPENDIX II 252 KOHLBERG'S STAGES OF MORAL DEVELOPMENT I. PRECONVENTIONAL LEVEL A t this level the chi ld is responsive to cultural rules and labels of good and bad,' righr and wrong, but interprets these labels i n terms of either the physical or hedonistic consequences of action, punishmenr, reward, exchange of favors, or i n terms of the physical power of those who enunciate the rules and labels. This level is divided into two stages: Stage 1: The punishment and obedience orientation. The : physical consequences of action determine its goodness or badness regardless of the human meaning or value of these consequences. 1 Stage 2: The instrumental-relativist orientation. R i g h t ac-'; t ion consists of that which instrumentally satisfies one's • o w n needs and occasionally the needs of others. Reci-procity is a matter of you scratch my back and I ' l l scratch yours. III. T H E P O S T - C O N V E N T I O N A L , C I P L E D L E V E L II. C O N V E N T I O N A L L E V E L A t this level, maintaining the expectations of the individual's family, group, or nation is perceived as valuable i n its own right, regardless of immediate and obvious consequences. T h e attitude is not only one of conformity to personal expectations and social order, but one of loyalty to it, of actively maintaining, supporting, and justifying the order and of identifying w i t h the persons or group involved i n it. A t this level there are the fol lowing two stages: St.tgc 3: T h e "good boy-nice g i r l " orientation. Good behavior is that which pleases or helps others and is approved by them. There is much conformity to images of what is majority behavior. Stage 4: T h e law and order orientation. A n orientation toward authority, fixed rules, and the maintenance of the social order. R i g h t behavior consists of doing one's duty, A U T O N O M O U S , O R P R I N - , showing respect for authority, and maintaining the social 'order for its o w n sake. A t this level there is a clear effort to define moral values and principles which have application apart from the authority of the groups and persons holding these principles and apart from the individual's own identification w i t h these groups. This level has two stages: Stage 3: T h e social-contract legalistic orientation. Right action tends to be defined i n terms of general individual rights and i n terms of standards which are critically , examined and agreed upon by the whole society. A n em-phasis upon procedural rules for reaching consensus. This is the official morality of the American Government and the Constitution. Stage 6: The universal ethical principle orientation. R i g h t 1 is defined by the decision of conscience i n accord w i t h self-chosen ethical principles appealing to logical com-prehension, universality, and consistency. These p r i n -ciples are abstract and ethical, l ike the Golden Rule, and not moral imperatives l ike the T e n Commandments. ' A t heart these are universal principles of justice, of the reciprocity and equality of human rights, and respect for the dignity of human beings as individual persons. 7 Cadapted from L. Kohlberg, "From Is to Ought: How to Commit the Natural-i s t i c Fallacy and Get Away with It in the Study of Moral Development," in T. Mischel (ed.) Cognitive Devel-opment. New York: Academic Press, Inc., 1971, pp. 151-232. APPENDIX III 253 MORAL COMPONENTS A. Wilson's Components (John Wilson, The Assessment of Morality. NFER:1973, PP. 38,39) PHIL(HC) PHIL(CC) PHIL(RSF)(DO & PO) EMP(HC) EMP(l)(Cs) EMP(l)(Ucs) EMP(2)(Cs) EMP(2)(Ucs) GIG(1)(KF) GIG(1)(KS) GIG(2)(VC) GIG(2)(NVC) KRAT(l) (RA) KRAT(1)(TT) KRAT(l)(OPU) KRAT(2) Having the concept of a 'person'. Claiming to use this concept in an overriding, prescriptive and universalized (O, P and U) principle. Having feelings which support this principle, either of a 'duty-oriented' (DO) or a 'person-oriented* (PO) kind. Having the concepts of various emotions (moods, etc.). Being able, in practice, to identify emotions, etc. in one-self, when these are at a con-scious level. Ditto, when the emotions are at an unconscious level. Ditto, in other people, when at a conscious level. Ditto, when at an unconscious level. Knowing other ('hard') facts relevant to moral decisions. Knowing sources of facts (where to find out) as above. 'Knowing how'—a 'skill' ele-ment in dealing with moral situations, as evinced in verbal communication with others. Ditto, in non-verbal communi-cation. Being, in practice, 'relevantly alert' to (noticing) moral situa-tions, and seeing them as such (describing them in terms of PHIL, etc. above). Thinking thoroughly about such situations, and bringing to bear whatever PHIL, EMP and GIG one has. As a result of the foregoing, making an overriding, pre-scriptive and universalized de-cision to act in others' interests. Being sufficiently whole-hearted, free from unconscious counter-motivation, etc. to carry out (when able) the above decision in practice. 254 B. Hirst's Components (Paul Hirst, Moral Education in a Secular Society, London: University of London Press Ltd., 1974, p. 91) A (i) Procedural knowledge or 'know-how' of the logic of rational moral judgments, (ii) Procedural knowledge of social skills and roles. B (i) Propositional knowledge or 'know-that' of the fundamental moral principles. (ii) Propositional knowledge of the physical world. (iii) Propositional knowledge of persons, both self and others. (iv) Propositional knowledge of social institutions and roles. C (i) Dispositions, conscious and unconscious, to think and judge morally. (ii) Dispositions, conscious and unconscious, to act in accordance with moral judgments. D Emotional experiences in keeping with rational moral judgments which facilitate moral action. C. AVER Components (Association for Values Education and Research, "Canada Council Proposal for Moral Education Research Grant," University of B r i t i s h Columbia, Vancouver, Canada: AVER, mimeo., 1975, pp. 23-25) A. Belief i n or commitment to the generalization principle expressed in the following two formulations: (1) i f i t i s right for me to do X i t must be right for anyone in similar circumstances.to do X; (2) i f the consequences of everyone's doing X i n a given circumstance would be unacceptable, then i t i s not right for anyone to do X i n that circum-stance-r B. Sensitivity to morally hazardous actions, i.e. actions about which consideration i s needed to determine whether or not they f u l f i l l the generalization principle. This means that one must have the sort of sensitivity that alerts him to (1) actions that may have consequences for others that he could not accept for himself, and (2) actions which may have disastrous consequences were everyone to engage in them. C. Inclination to determine the consequences of actions which are morally hazardous D. Ability and inclination to put oneself imaginatively into the circumstances of another person and thus come to appre-ciate the consequences of a proposed (morally hazardous) action for the other person. 255 E. A b i l i t y and i n c l i n a t i o n to f i l l i n the missing parts of an incomplete moral argument and to assess the v a l i d i t y of a moral argument F. Disposition to seek j u s t i f y i n g , argument from others who propose morally hazardous actions G. Resolution to do what one has decided i s the r i g h t thing and to r e f r a i n from doing what one has decided i s wrong H. S k i l l i n verbal and non-verbal communication I. A b i l i t y and d i s p o s i t i o n to assess the r e l i a b i l i t y of aut h o r i t i e s J . A b i l i t y and d i s p o s i t i o n to assess the tr u t h of empirical claims K. A b i l i t y and d i s p o s i t i o n to be clear i n the language we use i n delib e r a t i n g about moral issues. 

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