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date: 16 December 2018

Abstract and Keywords

The concepts of self-interest and self-love feature prominently in both and . Various notions of self-preservation, self-interest, and self-love are distinguished, and it is shown how self-love functions less as a motive than as an orientation. Although self-love may corrupt moral perception, the impartial spectator serves as an antidote. Smith’s conception of self-interest in is a broad one and not inconsistent with the moral psychology of . That the virtue of benevolence features less in than is not surprising given Smith’s overall account of sympathetic interaction, as well as the threshold of knowledge required for benevolent action. The chapter closes with a summary consideration of prudence, a virtue grounded in self-interest, and an examination of the status of ambition.

Keywords: Adam Smith, self-interest, self-love, selfishness, commerce, prudence, ambition

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