Natural goodness, sex, and the perverted faculty argumentChristopher Arroyo (Providence College)
There is a longstanding and widely held view, often associated with Catholicism, that intrinsically nonprocreative human sex acts are intrinsically immoral. Some philosophers who hold this view, such as Edward Feser, claim that they can defend the view on purely philosophical grounds by relying on the perverted faculty argument. This paper argues that Feser’s defense of the perverted faculty argument does not work because Feser fails to recognize the full implications of the species-dependence of natural goodness. By drawing on the work of Peter Geach and Philippa Foot, this paper presents a view of natural goodness that adequately accounts for the species-dependence of such goodness. Using this adequate account, the paper argues that at least some intrinsically nonprocreative human sex acts contribute to human flourishing.
November 4, 2022, 9:00am CET
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