Pettigrove, G. (2022) Cheerfulness. In: Pettigrove, G. and Swanton, C. (eds.) Neglected Virtues. Routledge: London, pp. 138-160. ISBN 9780429435201 (doi: 10.4324/9780429435201-7)

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Although cheerfulness was one of Hume’s favorite virtues, recent ethicists have ignored it. The chapter begins with an analysis of the trait of cheerfulness, which is a disposition to feel cheer (gladness, mirth, enjoyment, delight, amusement, etc.) even in challenging circumstances. So described, the trait is not a virtue since it could reflect naivete or a tendency to ignore life’s difficulties. To address these worries, I go on to explore what is distinctive about the forms of cheerfulness we admire and why we might consider the trait a virtue. The chapter closes by arguing that the virtue of cheerfulness gives us reason to question accounts – like those put forward by Iris Murdoch, John McDowell, and Bridget Clarke – that take virtues to be forms of sensitivity to goodness or requirement.

Item Type:Book Sections
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Pettigrove, Professor Glen
Authors: Pettigrove, G.
College/School:College of Arts > School of Humanities > Philosophy
Published Online:01 December 2021

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