The Morality of Criticism and the Respect of Persons

Wanpat Youngmevittaya


This is a paper in normative moral philosophy, addressing the problem of the respect of persons regarding the activity of criticism. The question is whether the activity of criticism should be considered a moral duty or simply a moral choice? If it is a moral duty, the further question is what, when, and how should we criticize someone if we are required by the moral law to respect persons? I discuss six potential arguments regarding this question, and argue that only one of them is satisfactory and should be set as the standard or the foundation of the morality of criticism. That is, we should criticize someone with the motive of love. I also argue that the criticism virtue would be possible only under the principle of moral particularism, in which this paper means the idea that we all have different roles in fulfilling our moral duties which are the same for everyone, and these different roles are determined by the actual identity of the person.


morality; criticism; love; moral particularism

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ISSN (Print): 1513-6442
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