Journal Articles & Book Chapters

  • Ware, Lauren (under commission). “Criminal behaviour in Black Mirror: Should pain be used as punishment?”, in Black Mirror and Philosophy, ed. David Kyle Johnson (London: Blackwell).

    ABSTRACT. The Hunters in White Bear Justice Park “like scaring people.” In “White Christmas”, Joe Potter’s 3 million years of torture was deemed enough for “a proper sentence”. And in the three stories of the “Black Museum” episode, we learn how creative we can get when it comes to imagining ways to cause pain, effectively and efficiently. This chapter takes a close look at the three punishment episodes of Netflix’s Black Mirror. Is emotional suffering an appropriate aim of criminal punishment? Should the public, as spectators of suffering, enjoy it? What is “closure”—is it justified? Is it a myth? What about the emotional effect of punishment on third parties, specifically the partners and children of people in prison—who can be made to suffer?

  • Ware, Lauren (under commission). “Emotional Suffering in Criminal Punishment”, invited chapter in The Philosophy of Suffering, eds. David Bain, Michael Brady, and Jennifer Corns (London: Routledge).

    ABSTRACT. Suffering is a central component of our lives. Our bodies break and become diseased. Our feelings get hurt, loved ones die, our goals are frustrated, our expectations are not met. It is a commonplace to think that suffering is, all and everywhere, bad. But might suffering also be good? If so, in what ways might suffering have positive, as well as negative, value? The papers collected for the this volume are original works by experts in a variety of disciplines that address questions about the nature and value of suffering, its relation to other mental states and capacities, and to vital questions in ethics, theology, and aesthetic. This chapter examines the nature and value of emotional suffering in criminal punishment: what is emotional suffering, and can it be justified as as a form of legal punishment?

  • Ware, Lauren (under commission). “The Emotion Turn in Philosophy”, Analysis Reviews.

    ABSTRACT. This article focuses on the most recent debates in the vibrant and emerging subfield of philosophy of emotion research. Given the dominance of 'cognitivist' theories of emotion in the philosophy, neurobiology, and cognitive science of emotion, we have witnessed a move away from attempts to pit reason and emotion against each other. This move, however, has opened the door to a host of thorny challenges for how we think about our affective relationship with the world, with concepts, and with other minds.

  • Ware, Lauren and Lee John Whittington (2019). “‘The harvest of despair: Catastrophic fear and the understanding of risk in the shadow of Mount Etna”, invited chapter in Waiting for the End of the World: The Archaeology of Risk and its Perception in the Middle Ages, ed. Chris Gerrard (London: Routledge).

    ABSTRACT. In this chapter, we offer an account of fear and risk in anticipation of catastrophe. We draw on the narrative response to the Mount Etna volcano in medieval Sicily to frame an evaluation of how fear can be seen to impact the understanding of risk when the event of that risk is the catastrophic suffering of an entire community. We hope to show how an exploration of the philosophical questions surrounding the emotion of fear and the understanding of risk can contribute to broader, interdisciplinary dialogue on the human experience of the disastrous and deadly.

  • Archer, Alfred and Lauren Ware (2018). “Beyond the Call of Beauty, The Monist, Vol. 101, Issue 1: 114-127.

    ABSTRACT. This paper defends two claims. First, we will argue for the existence of aesthetic demands in the realm of everyday aesthetics, and that these demands are not reducible to moral demands. Second, we will argue that we must recognise the limits of these demands in order to combat a widespread form of gendered oppression. The concept of aesthetic supererogation offers a new structural framework to understand both the pernicious nature of this oppression and what may be done to mitigate it.

  • Archer, Alfred and Lauren Ware (2017). “Aesthetic Supererogation”, Estetika: The Central European Journal of Aesthetics, Vol. 54: 102-116.

    ABSTRACT. Many aestheticians and ethicists are interested in the similarities and connections between aesthetics and ethics (Nussbaum 1990; Foot 2002; Gaut 2007). One way in which some have suggested the two domains are different is that in ethics there exist obligations while in aesthetics there do not (Hampshire 1954). However, Marcia Muelder Eaton has argued that there is good reason to think that aesthetic obligations do exist (Eaton 2008). We will explore the nature of these obligations by asking whether acts of aesthetic supererogation (acts that go beyond the call of our aesthetic obligations) are possible. In this paper, we defend the thesis that there is good reason to think such acts exist.

  • Ware, Lauren (2016). “Emotions in the Evaluation of Legal Risk”, invited chapter in Law and Emotion, eds. Hilge Landweer and Dirk Koppelberg (Freiburg: Karl Alber Verlag), 249-277. Also in German as Recht und Emotion I: Verkannte Zusammenhänge.

    ABSTRACT. The risks taken into account in legal decision-making are, often, matters of life and death, but the way we think about risk is flawed. This is a problem. The dominant account of how emotions are involved in risky decision-making follows the standard probabilistic account of risk. If we entertain a modal account of risk, however, this changes the way in which a host of legal actors—members of the jury, judges, defendants, lawyers, legislators, regulators, and police—ought to think about how emotions impact risk evaluation. In this chapter, I examine what taking a modal account of risk would mean for the way we understand emotions in the evaluation of legal risk: specifically, the risk of wrongful conviction

  • Ware, Lauren (2015). “Erotic Virtue”, Res Philosophica, Vol. 92, Issue 4: 915-935.

    ABSTRACT. This paper defends an account of how erotic love works to develop virtue. It is argued that love drives moral development by holding the creation of virtue in the individual as the emotion’s intentional object. After analyzing the distinction between passive and active accounts of the object of love, this paper demonstrates that a Platonic virtue-ethical understanding of erotic love—far from being consumed with ascetic contemplation—offers a positive treatment of emotion’s role in the attainment and social practice of virtue.

  • Ware, Lauren (2014). “What Good is Love?”, Analytic Teaching and Philosophical Praxis, Vol. 34, Issue 2: 57-73.

    ABSTRACT. The role of emotions in mental life is the subject of longstanding controversy, spanning ethics, moral psychology, and educational theory. This paper defends an account of love’s cognitive power. My starting point is Plato’s dialogue, the Symposium, in which we find the surprising claim that love aims at engendering moral virtue. I argue that this understanding affords love a crucial place in educational curricula, as engaging the emotions can motivate both cognitive achievement and moral development. I first outline the state of the challenge between dominant rival theories regarding emotions in learning. Next, I demonstrate how Platonic virtue ethics offers the most tenable prospect for an education of reason and emotion. Third, I sketch three practical ways educators might constructively engage emotions in the classroom. I conclude that love’s virtue is its peerless power to motivate the creative and lateral thinking which leads to moral development.

Public Engagement


Scripta Non-Finito

  • “Plato’s Bond of Love”

  • “Who’s Afraid of a Citizens’ Income?”

  • “Appropriate Hate” (with Lee John Whittington)

  • “The Show Must Go On: Obligatory selfies, aesthetic self-creation, and choice”

  • “The Emotion Turn in Legal Philosophy”

  • “The Pain Factory”

  • “Affective Imagination in Recidivism Risk Assessment”

  • “On Bullshit Exams”