Review essay: Exemplarist moral theory

Lani Watson, Alan Wilson

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

This review essay provides a critical discussion of Linda Zagzebski's (2017) Exemplarist Moral Theory (EMT). We agree that EMT is a book of impressive scope that will be of interest to ethical theorists, as well as epistemologists, philosophers of language, and philosophers of religion. Throughout the critical discussion we argue that exemplarism faces a number of important challenges, firstly, in dealing with the fallibility of admiration, which plays a central role in the theoretical framework, and secondly, in serving as a practical guide for moral development. Despite this, we maintain that EMT points the way for significant future theoretical and empirical research into some of the most well-established questions in ethical theory.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)755-768
JournalJournal of Moral Philosophy
Issue number6
Early online date4 Dec 2019
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 4 Dec 2019

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • exemplarism
  • Exemplarist Moral Theory
  • Zagzebski
  • admiration
  • virtue ethics
  • emulation
  • character education


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