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Volume 48 • Number 1

January 2011



Open-Mindedness as a Moral Virtue

by Nomy Arpaly

Open-mindedness appears to be a cognitive disposition: an open-minded person is disposed to gain, lose, and revise beliefs in a particular, reasonable way. It is also a moral virtue, for we blame, for example, the man who quickly comes to think a new neighbor untrustworthy because he drives the wrong car or wears the wrong clothes—for his closed-mindedness. How open–mindedness could be a moral virtue is a puzzle, though, because exercises of moral virtues are expressions of moral concern, whereas gaining, losing, and revising beliefs are not actions and so cannot be actions taken out of moral concern. Solving this puzzle is the purpose of this essay.

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ISSN: 2152-1123