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The audience in shame

Bero, Steve (2019) The audience in shame Philosophical Studies. pp. 1-20.

Bero The Audience in Shame (accepted version).pdf - Accepted version Manuscript

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Many experiences of shame centrally involve exposure. This has suggested to a number of writers that shame is essentially a social emotion that involves being exposed to the view or appraisal of an audience—call this the Audience Thesis. Others reject the Audience Thesis on the basis of private experiences of shame that seem to involve no exposure. This disagreement marks a basic fault line in theorizing about shame. I develop and explore a simple but effective way to shield the Audience Thesis from the private shame objection, by understanding the notion of an audience in a very minimal way. Rather than conceiving of the audience in terms of an other whose appraisal is an element in shame, we can conceive of shame generally as a response to appraisals of the subject—either by others or by the subject herself. On this view, shame requires an audience in the sense that it is not a first-order self-appraisal—like disappointment in or disapproval of oneself—but rather an appraisal of appraisals. This approach yields substantial benefits: it renders the private shame objection harmless; it explains why exposure cases strike us as particularly paradigmatic instances of shame; it clarifies what is happening when we feel shame before appraisals with which we do not agree; it helps to understand how it may be possible to feel shame in the face of neutral or even positive appraisals; and it captures a significant but neglected sense in which shame might be considered a social emotion.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences > School of Law
Authors :
Date : 6 February 2019
DOI : 10.1007/s11098-019-01253-9
Copyright Disclaimer : © Springer Nature B.V. 2019
Uncontrolled Keywords : Shame; Audience; Self-assessment; Social Emotion
Depositing User : Users 6648 not found.
Date Deposited : 20 Feb 2019 12:28
Last Modified : 07 Feb 2020 02:08

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