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DW

Daniel Ward

Lawyer and PhD Candidate, University of Cambridge

Daniel Ward practices as a lawyer specialising in commercial litigation and international arbitration. He is also a PhD candidate in legal studies at the University of Cambridge and has published papers on political and legal theory. He lives in Surrey in the UK.

Written by Daniel Ward



Recent Comments

DW

Moral luck

Daniel Ward

Does an evolutionary (or at least functional) account of moral responses offer insight into the paradox? And is the assumption that, even knowing no more than we do than the stated facts, Killer and Merely Reckless have equal character traits too hastily made?

A plausible functional explanation of blame is that it is designed to disadvantage and hence discourage members of a group who are likely to cause harm through their behaviour. This would of course predict something like what the author calls the character response to blame. Underlying our moral responses would be a standing exercise in calculating which people, based on their personality, track record of behaviour, mental an...

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DW

Religion without belief

Daniel Ward

Interesting piece. Yet taking the factual findings of the author at face value - and I have to, because I don’t know anything really about religion in Japan - I wonder if the article is drawing the conceptual line in the right place (....?) We learn, in the article, that in Japan the prevalence of beliefs such as “there is a spiritual realm beyond the physical one” far outstrip rates at which people self-identify as “religious”, which rather suggests that belief isn’t a complete irrelevance in that society. The author also finds, it is true, that Japanese people often seem more attached to the rituals of religious practice than any underlying beliefs regarding the importance or efficacy o...

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DW

The Margaret Mead problem

Daniel Ward

I discovered Mead only fairly recently. My sense is that she is substantially less well known and less talked about in the UK than in America, which is a shame given the power and great humanity of her thinking. Coming of Age in Samoa - my own introduction to Mead - was a wonderful work to read because it gets inside the head of the people it describes and paints them as human individuals, each with her own talents and foibles, web of relationships, personal ambitions and strategies for coping with the demands of social life. The idea stressed in the article that different individuals have different natural ‘temperaments’ and that these temperaments interact crucially with the (often arbi...

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