PHL 101 Paper 2 - Evan Vandegriff PHL101 Essay 2 Option 1...

Info icon This preview shows pages 1–3. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Evan Vandegriff PHL101 Essay 2 Option 1.) Every day, we can see clear examples of both bullshit and lying and the varying consequences of both these actions. But what is bullshit, exactly? What are the characteristics of bullshit? What is the truth? Can bullshit be harmful? The purpose of this paper is to answer these questions while at the same time showing that bullshit can definitely sometimes be harmful. By examining: the meaning of the word “bullshit” as defined by Harry Frankfurt, why Frankfurt thinks that bullshit is harmful, and a clearly defended original argument, the possibility of harm from bullshitting will be shown. In Harry Frankfurt’s small book “On Bullshit”, he distinguishes the meaning of bullshit while at the same time showing us numerous ways that it can be harmful. The essence of bullshit centers on the idea that bullshitters have no concern for the truth. However, real bullshit extends beyond this center idea because we realize that bullshitters assign no value to truth in any context. To any person who values the truth in any capacity, bullshit can completely throw them for a loop because they find it hard to believe people would just completely disregard the truth without any effort to discovering it. Bullshit differs from lying because liars recognize the truth and just choose to deceive because they believe something different or want others to believe something different. Therefore, a further clarification is that bullshitting generally serves to misrepresent the bullshitter but falls short of lying. Frankfurt believes that bullshitting can be very harmful and more harmful then lying. He states: “Both in lying and in telling the truth people are guided by their beliefs concerning the way things are. These guide them as they endeavor either to describe the
Image of page 1

Info icon This preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
world correctly or to describe it deceitfully. For this reason, telling lies does not tend to unfit a person for telling the truth in the same way that bullshitting tends to. ...The bullshitter ignores these demands altogether. He does not reject the authority of the truth, as the liar does, and oppose himself to it. He pays no attention to it at all. By virtue of this, bullshit is a greater enemy of the truth than lies are.” 1 Essentially, Frankfurt believes that bullshit is so harmful because it is the greatest enemy of truth.
Image of page 2
Image of page 3
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

{[ snackBarMessage ]}

What students are saying

  • Left Quote Icon

    As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.

    Student Picture

    Kiran Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.

    Student Picture

    Dana University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.

    Student Picture

    Jill Tulane University ‘16, Course Hero Intern