Emotions and morality in Horkheimer, Adorno and Levinas

Pedro Ortega Ruiz


This article analyses the role of emotions in the moral of Horkheimer, Adorno and Levinas.  Several different answers are given to the question of whether moral action comes solely from reason, from emotion only, or on the contrary, it comes from both emotion and reason.

The present work shows a research on Horkheimer, Adorno and Levinas positions, these ones far away from the Kantian formalism. The materialistic ethic of those latter authors is summarized in four thematic core subjects: 1) Morality is resistance to the evil, 2) the moral impulse rises from experiencing victims suffering, from encountering the other, 3) the moral impulse takes the form of compassion and political compromise to change unfair social structures, and 4) Morality is memory.


Key Words: Morality, emotion, reason, victim, compassion, policy, education

Data collected by PlumX Metrics. More information on the metrics collected can be found at https://plumanalytics.com/learn/about-metrics/