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Imaginative virtue ethics: A transportation-transcendental approach

Abstract

Several authors have argued that virtue ethics needs to adopt a more realistic moral psychology in proposing a more effective way for teaching and learning. In response to this appeal, our paper explores the development of an Imaginative Virtue Ethics Transportation-Transcendental Experiential Approach based on the Aristotelian-Thomistic Mind–Body Theory. It also appears that many educators who use an Aristotelian-Thomistic virtue ethics as a teaching and learning platform may be unaware of the theoretical underpinnings especially with regards to the understanding of the phantasmata. A theoretical framework is developed that links the virtues with transcendentals (beauty, truth, and goodness) thereby strengthening the virtue epistemological system within an Aristotelian-Thomistic anthropology using the psychological concept of transportation. Specifically, the framework links the virtues to the acting for the ultimate end of human existence defined as the participation in the transcendentals which gives the virtues its normativity and meaning. A narrative example is presented to illustrate the approach which can applied to different epistemological anthropologies depending on the focus of the lesson plan. Qualitative feedback over a ten year period validates the theory in the knowledge acquisition and practice of the relational order of the virtues to existential meaning. We conclude with some practical suggestion to help improve and strengthen the mind–body conduits by appropriating an environment that would be conducive to producing phantasmata to promote integral human development through the virtues.

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Correspondence to Meena Rambocas.

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Arjoon, S., Rambocas, M. Imaginative virtue ethics: A transportation-transcendental approach. International Journal of Ethics Education 7, 35–51 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40889-021-00136-0

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Keywords

  • Imaginative virtue ethics
  • Virtue epistemology
  • Transcendental
  • Mind–body
  • Transportation