Until the end of July, Sveinung Sivertsen (e Department of Philosophy, University of Bergen) is a guest at our center. Welcome!
“People sometimes do what they believe is right, even when it will make others disapprove of them. Whistle-blowers are a good example: Just think of Edward Snowden, who knew that his actions would make many of his fellows seem him as a traitor. What explains this kind of behaviour? Adam Smith, a philosopher in the so-called Scottish Enlightenment, answered: ‘love of praiseworthiness’: the desire not merely to be praised by others, but to be worthy of praise. Is this emotion and the attendant desire real? That is what I want to find out in collaboration with Robert Hepach and others at the LFE. We hypothesise that if it is real, children will experience a positive emotion, ‘elevation’, after having done something good like helping, even when doing so involves some personal cost, like giving up a fun activity.”