Title

Character and concept : how conceptual blending constrains situationism

Date of Award

2007

Degree Type

Thesis

Department

Philosophy

Rights

CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

Abstract

This thesis is an attempt to defend the notion of character from concerns raised recently by situationists (namely, John Doris & Gilbert Harman). Situationism attempts to undermine the concept of character used to support most versions of virtue ethics by appealing to research in the social sciences. More specifically, both John Doris and Gilbert Harman are global character trait eliminativists who take the social-psychological research to warrant the abandonment of the concept of character. This thesis draws heavily upon the mental space mapping theory known as conceptual blending developed by Gilles Fauconnier and Mark Turner. I make use of the insights provided by conceptual blending theory in an attempt to disarm the situationists' character eliminativist position by showing how entrenched and useful is the notion of character to our common understandings and interpretations of ourselves and others.