Naturalizing Tomasello’s history of morality

Philip Pettit*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    2 Citations (Scopus)


    Building on different sources of theory, from paleontology to psychology, Michael Tomasello offers a plausible, even compelling, story about how our ancestors developed distinctive forms of collaboration, evolving mechanisms to support them, in the period from roughly 400,000 to 150,000 years ago. But he claims that this narrative explains why they would have begun to think in characteristically moral ways, developing notions like those of respect, desert, and commitment. Do the arguments rehearsed support that extra claim? It is not absolutely clear that they do.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)722-735
    Number of pages14
    JournalPhilosophical Psychology
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 4 Jul 2018


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