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Document Details :
Title: The Nature of Modesty
Author(s): BENZIMAN, Yotam
Journal: Ethical Perspectives
Volume: 22 Issue: 3 Date: 2015
Modesty has a paradoxical nature. It involves high self-regard and an appreciation of one’s qualities; yet in order to be modest, a person has to downplay these very qualities. I claim that this paradox should not be resolved. Pride and modesty, usually regarded as opposites, actually go hand in hand with one another. Looking at others’ achievements makes us realize what we are capable of. We rejoice in our success. And yet we know that the results might have been otherwise. This accounts for the second part of the paradox whereby one downplays one’s achievements, keeping them in the right perspective.
Nevertheless, it is this very perspective that makes one regard oneself highly, thus accounting for the first part of the paradox.