Abstract and Keywords
The primary aim of this chapter is to open up an appreciation of Hume and Nietzsche as central figures in normative ethics within a suitably realist tradition, as opposed to their being some form of subjectivist or skeptic. Morality for them is nothing like the “morality system” so criticized by Williams; rather, for both thick virtue and vice, concepts are central. To understand their naturalistic accounts of properties denoted by those concepts we need (in the case of Hume) an appreciation of the rich psychology of the passions contained in Part II of the Treatise. In the case of Nietzsche, the relevant psychology is the depth psychology heralding the psychoanalytic movement. In particular, such understanding involves taking seriously what Nietzsche calls his “developmental theory of will to power.” This allows him to present a revisionist account of the virtue/vice concepts.
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