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Deflationism, Rationalism, and Anti-Rationalism: Three Views of Superego Morality

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DOI: 10.4236/ojpp.2015.56045    4,216 Downloads   4,617 Views  
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ABSTRACT

Philosophers of psychoanalysis have for years been debating over Freud’s criticism of morality as a sheer product of irrationality originated in our superego development. In this paper I shall consider three views on Freud’s moral psychology, which I call the “deflationist”, the “rationalist”, and the “anti-rationalist” view. I argue that both the deflationist and the rationalist view are untenable, as they fail to distinguish among different senses of irrationality that we can attribute to morality. By contrast, I shall develop and defend an anti-rationalist view, to the effect that an inherently irrational superego is no threat to morality’s place in human life, as long as it’s capable of making us experience an integrated form of life. And as this desired interaction does not always come easily, we can naturally see the point of introducing psychoanalysis to our lives.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Wong, C. (2015) Deflationism, Rationalism, and Anti-Rationalism: Three Views of Superego Morality. Open Journal of Philosophy, 5, 374-383. doi: 10.4236/ojpp.2015.56045.

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