Chapter 9 Feeling and dirty hands: the role of regret experienced by responsible agents
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My aim in this chapter is to make sense of the phenomenology of dirty hands. To this end, I defend a particular interpretation of the role of feelings that accompany the moral judgments that leaders make in hard cases. One fact about the phenomenology of leadership is that leaders sometimes have to do things that are regrettable in the very fact both that these actions need to be done and, more important in this context, that they - the leaders - are the ones who morally ought to do them. So, leaders are sometimes justified in doing what would be wrong or problematic in other contexts. Of course, they are not always justified. What leaders feel, though - the phenomenology of judgment and action - is very much the same across cases. This means that there must be moral limits on leaders' attempts to justify what is potentially wrong or problematic. I conclude by offering a way for leaders to check for justification when they are tempted to judge that the situation is one in which they must get their hands dirty.

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Editors: Anna B. Kayes and D. C. Kayes
Monograph Book