Hypocrisy, Knowledge, and the Rule of Blaming

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It is commonly accepted that non-hypocrisy is a condition of blaming, and that it is a moral condition. This paper proposes an alternative, epistemic, view of blaming: knowledge is necessary for blaming, and with the added condition that knowledge provides a (motivating) reason for action – sufficient. First it is argued that knowing that the action of a blamee is wrong is necessary for blaming. Second, it is shown that the phenomenon of hypocritical blaming extends to circumstances not involving moral judgment (such as sports). Third, it is claimed that expressions of intentions such as (1) “A is wrong and I intend to do it” are infelicitous as they stand. The similarities between such expressions and hypocritical blaming recommend a unified account of their infelicity. Finally, it is argued that only the epistemic view of blaming provides accounts for both moral and non-moral blaming, and for the related phenomena.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Moral Philosophy
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Yuval Eylon, 2023.


  • blaming
  • hypocrisy
  • knowledge
  • speech-acts


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