Response to Clack

Andrew Gleeson

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

    3 Citations (Scopus)


    I welcome Beverley Clack's introduction of Hannah Arendt's concept of thoughtlessness into the discussion of the problem of evil. Arendt had in mind the time-serving or careerist functionary, conscientiously performing an administrative task in a totalitarian bureaucracy, eyes and heart closed to the horrors of the system they serve. But thoughtlessness is not confined to 'organization men' of limited abilities. It is also characteristic ideological zealots and criminal thugs. Could intellectuals, and even philosophers, be guilty of it? Well, what is thoughtlessness? Clack describes thoughtfulness as that which connects "one's actions to effects felt in the lives of others', and later she glosses thoughtlessness as the incapacity to make a " connection between [one's] actions and the fate of others". 'Thoughtlessness' here is being use din that ordinary sense which I say that someone has acted or spoken without regard for others: 'I'm sorry, that was so thoughtless of me'.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationThe Problem of Evil
    Subtitle of host publicationEight Views in Dialogue
    EditorsN N Trakakis
    Place of PublicationNew York
    PublisherOxford University Press
    Number of pages3
    ISBN (Print)9780198821625
    Publication statusPublished - 19 Jul 2018


    • Evil
    • God
    • Philosophy of religion
    • Problem of evil
    • Suffering


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