Philosophy and Religion

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Integrity is sometimes conceived in terms of the wholeness of the individual, such that persons who experience temptations or other sorts of inner conflicts, afflictions, or divisions of self would seem to lack integrity to a greater or lesser degree. I contrast this understanding of integrity—which I label psychological integrity—with a different conception which I call practical integrity. On the latter conception, persons can manifest integrity in spite of the various factors mentioned above, so long as they remain true to their commitments in action and deliberation. Although psychological harmony is one feature reasonably associated with integrity, I suggest that practical integrity captures other features of character and action often (and reasonably) related to ascriptions of integrity. Practical integrity remains possible even for those who must confront, manage, and control factors that give rise to various kinds of inner conflict.

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Philosophia: Philosophical Quarterly of Israel

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