Ideas y Valores (Sep 2010)

The Role of Reason in Morality: The Case of Abelard’s Ethics

  • Jimmy Washburn

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 59, no. 143
pp. 73 – 108


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Peter Abelard develops an ethical thought, which is quite different from later moral philosophy, structured over some concepts such as reason and moral subjectivity. The first, is understood as discursive power over moral life and as moral reasoning. About moral subjectivity, emphasizes the moral act’s psychology, and develop his understanding not on the basis of sin, but its constitution. The paper traces the development of these two concepts in Abelard’s two major ethical works: Ethics and Dialogue between a Philosopher, a Jew and a Christian. And also studies the relation between Abelard’s morality and the metaphysics held by him.