chapter  4
16 Pages

Shame, guilt and remorse

Suppose one does something of which one is ashamed. Is one ashamed because one feels oneself to be the object of other people’s disapproval? Is the sting of the shame one feels, the sting of the disapproval of others? That is, is what one cares for in the shame one feels other people’s esteem and approval of one? Suppose one has done something dishonourable or cowardly and feels ashamed. Is one’s regard for one’s honour in the shame one feels simply a matter of the importance one attaches to the way others think of one? Is honour simply what other people bestow on one, giving one a feeling of self-worth?