Action, Ethics, and ResponsibilityLeading philosophers explore responsibility from a variety of perspectives, including metaphysics, action theory, and philosophy of law. Most philosophical explorations of responsibility discuss the topic solely in terms of metaphysics and the "free will" problem. By contrast, these essays by leading philosophers view responsibility from a variety of perspectives--metaphysics, ethics, action theory, and the philosophy of law. After a broad, framing introduction by the volume's editors, the contributors consider such subjects as responsibility as it relates to the "free will" problem; the relation between responsibility and knowledge or ignorance; the relation between causal and moral responsibility; the difference, if any, between responsibility for actions and responsibility for omissions; the metaphysical requirements for making sense of "collective" responsibility; and the relation between moral and legal responsibility. The contributors include such distinguished authors as Alfred R. Mele, John Martin Fischer, George Sher, and Frances Kamm, as well as important rising scholars. Taken together, the essays in Action, Ethics, and Responsibility offer a breadth of perspectives that is unmatched by other treatments of the topic. Contributors Joseph Keim Campbell, David Chan, Randolph Clarke, E.J. Coffman, John Martin Fischer, Helen Frowe, Todd Jones, Frances Kamm, Antti Kauppinen, Alfred R. Mele, Michael O'Rourke, Paul Russell, Robert F. Schopp, George Sher, Harry S. Silverstein, Saul Smilansky, Donald Smith, Charles T. Wolfe
Being EvilWe regularly encounter appalling wrongdoing, with the media offering a depressing parade of violent assault, rape, and murder. Yet sometimes even the cynical and world-weary amongst us are taken aback. Sometimes we confront a crime so terrible, so horrendous, so deeply wrong, that we reach forthe word "evil". The 9/11 terrorist attacks were not merely wrong, but evil. A serial killer who tortures their victims is not merely a bad person. They are evil. And as the Holocaust showed us, we must remain vigilant against the threat of evil. But what exactly is it? If we use the word "evil",are we buying into a naive Manichean worldview, in which two cosmic forces of good and evil are pitted against one another? Are we guilty of demonizing our enemies? How does "evil" go beyond what is merely bad or wrong?This book explores the answers that philosophers have offered to these questions. Luke Russell discusses why some philosophers think that evil is a myth or a fantasy, while others think that evil is real, and is a concept that plays an important role in contemporary secular morality. Along the wayhe asks whether evil is always horrific and incomprehensible, or if it can be banal. Considering if there is a special psychological hallmark that sets the evildoers apart from the rest of us, Russell also engages with ongoing discussions over psychopathy and empathy, analysing the psychology behindevildoing.
Beyond Bumper Sticker Ethics : An Introduction to Theories of Right and WrongIdeas have consequences. And sometimes those ideas can be squeezed into slogans, slapped on bumper stickers and tweeted into cyberspace. These compact messages coming at us from all directions often compress in a few words entire ethical systems. It turns out that there's a lot more to the ideas behind these slogans--ideas that need to be sorted out before we make important moral decisions as individuals or as societies.In this revised and expanded edition of Steve Wilkens's widely-used text, the author has updated his introductions to basic ethical systems: cultural relativism ethical egoism utilitarianism behaviorism situation ethics Kantian ethics virtue ethics natural law ethics divine command theory He has also added two new chapters: evolutionary ethics narrative ethics With clarity and wit Wilkens unpacks the complicated ideas behind the slogans and offers Christian evaluations of each.
Business Law & Ethicshis volume offers an expansive overview of information systems and technology that shape businesses.
Distant Suffering : Morality, Media and PoliticsDistant Suffering, first published in 1999, examines the moral and political implications for a spectator of the distant suffering of others as presented through the media. What are the morally acceptable responses to the sight of suffering on television, for example, when the viewer cannot act directly to affect the circumstances in which the suffering takes place? Luc Boltanski argues that spectators can actively involve themselves and others by speaking about what they have seen and how they were affected by it. Developing ideas in Adam Smith's moral theory, he examines three rhetorical 'topics' available for the expression of the spectator's response to suffering: the topics of denunciation and of sentiment and the aesthetic topic. The book concludes with a discussion of a 'crisis of pity' in relation to modern forms of humanitarianism. A possible way out of this crisis is suggested which involves an emphasis and focus on present suffering.
The Essentials of Philosophy and EthicsAn important resource for those needing to understand the key concepts in philosophy and ethics and their relevance to current issues. It covers a wide range of philosophical ideas including often-neglected non-European traditions such as African philosophies and Islamic ethics.
Ethical Issues and Citizen Rights in the Era of Digital Government SurveillanceQuestions surrounding the concept of freedom versus security have intensified in recent years due to the rise of new technologies. The increased governmental use of technology for data collection now poses a threat to citizensâe(tm) privacy and is drawing new ethical concerns. Ethical Issues and Citizen Rights in the Era of Digital Government Surveillance focuses on the risks presented by the usage of surveillance technology in the virtual public sphere and how such practices have called for a re-examination of what limits should be imposed. Highlighting international perspectives and theoretical frameworks relating to privacy concerns, this book is a pivotal reference source for researchers, professionals, and upper-level students within the e-governance realm.
Ethics - Questions and Morality of Human ActionsThe third edition covers topics of recent interest in the twenty-first century, such as Heroic Medicine, Gender Identity, Wealth Inequality, LGBTQ Issues, and more. This encyclopedic work includes more than 1,000 essays organized by broad categories related to ethical issues.
Ethics, in one form or another, has been a central issue in history since the earliest human beings began living together in communities. Few topics are more in need of clarification and discussion than ethics. Salem Press is pleased to announce the release of the third edition of Ethics, a four-volume set that significantly updates and expands the first edition, published in 1994.
This new edition adds more than 50 articles to the set, raising the total to 1,038 essays and 6 appendices. This edition also updates and expands many of the original essays and adds other new features.
Free Will : An Historical and Philosophical IntroductionWhat is the place of human free will in our lives if all our actions are the result of some other cause? Does our processing unconscious beliefs or desires make us less free? Is our free will necessarily restricted if we do not choose our own beliefs? The debate between free will and its opposing doctrine, determinism, is one of the key issues in philosophy. Free Will: An historical and philosophical introduction provides a comprehensive introduction to this highly important question and examines the contributions made by sixteen of the most outstanding thinkers from the time of early Greece to the twentieth century: *Homer *Sophocles *Platto *Aristotle *St Augustine *St Thomas Aquinas *Descaartes *Spinoza *Hume *Kant *Schopehauer *Freud *Sartre *Weil *Wittgenstein *Moore Ilham Dilman brings together all the dimensions of the problem of free will with examples from literature, ethics and psychoanalysis. Drawing out valuable insights from both sides of the free will-determinism divide, and he provides an accessible and highly readable introduction to this perennial problem.
Implicit Bias and Philosophy: Moral Responsibility, Structural Injustice, and EthicsThere is abundant evidence that most people, often in spite of their conscious beliefs, values and attitudes, have implicit biases. 'Implicit bias' is a term of art referring to evaluations of social groups that are largely outside conscious awareness or control. These evaluations aretypically thought to involve associations between social groups and concepts or roles like 'violent,' 'lazy,' 'nurturing,' 'assertive,' 'scientist,' and so on. Such associations result at least in part from common stereotypes found in contemporary liberal societies about members of these groups. Implicit Bias and Philosophy brings the work of leading philosophers and psychologists together to explore core areas of psychological research on implicit (or unconscious) bias, as well as the ramifications of implicit bias for core areas of philosophy. Volume 2: Moral Responsibility, StructuralInjustice, and Ethics is comprised of three sections. 'Moral Responsibility for Implicit Bias' contains chapters examining the relationship of implicit biases to concepts that are central to moral responsibility, including control, awareness, reasons-responsiveness, and alienation. The chaptersin the second section - Structural Injustice' - explore the connections between the implicit biases held by individuals and the structural injustices of the societies in which they are situated. And finally, the third section - 'The Ethics of Implicit Bias: Theory and Practice' - contains chaptersexamining strategies for implicit attitude change, the ramifications of research on implicit bias for philosophers working in ethics, and suggestions for combatting implicit biases in the fields of philosophy and law. This volume can be read independently of, or in conjunction with, Volume I: Metaphysics and Epistemology, which addresses key metaphysical and epistemological questions on implicit bias, including the effect of implicit bias on scientific research, gender stereotypes in philosophy, and the role ofheuristics in biased reasoning.
In Nature's Interests? : Interests, Animal Rights, and Environmental EthicsThis book offers a powerful response to what Varner calls the "two dogmas of environmental ethics"--the assumptions that animal rights philosophies and anthropocentric views are each antithetical to sound environmental policy. Allowing that every living organism has interests which ought,other things being equal, to be protected, Varner contends that some interests take priority over others. He defends both a sentientist principle giving priority to the lives of organisms with conscious desires and an anthropocentric principle giving priority to certain very inclusive interestswhich only humans have. He then shows that these principles not only comport with but provide significant support for environmental goals.
Justice for HedgehogsThe fox knows many things, the Greeks said, but the hedgehog knows one big thing. In his most comprehensive work Ronald Dworkin argues that value in all its forms is one big thing: that what truth is, life means, morality requires, and justice demands are different aspects of the same large question. He develops original theories on a great variety of issues very rarely considered in the same book: moral skepticism, literary, artistic, and historical interpretation, free will, ancient moral theory, being good and living well, liberty, equality, and law among many other topics. What we think about any one of these must stand up, eventually, to any argument we find compelling about the rest.Skepticism in all its forms-philosophical, cynical, or post-modern-threatens that unity. The Galilean revolution once made the theological world of value safe for science. But the new republic gradually became a new empire: the modern philosophers inflated the methods of physics into a totalitarian theory of everything. They invaded and occupied all the honorifics-reality, truth, fact, ground, meaning, knowledge, and being-and dictated the terms on which other bodies of thought might aspire to them, and skepticism has been the inevitable result. We need a new revolution. We must make the world of science safe for value.
Kant and Applied Ethics : The Uses and Limits of Kant's Practical PhilosophyKant and Applied Ethics makes an important contribution to Kant scholarship, illuminating the vital moral parameters of key ethical debates. Offers a critical analysis of Kant's ethics, interrogating the theoretical bases of his theory and evaluating their strengths and weaknesses Examines the controversies surrounding the most important ethical discussions taking place today, including abortion, the death penalty, and same-sex marriage Joins innovative thinkers in contemporary Kantian scholarship, including Christine Korsgaard, Allen Wood, and Barbara Herman, in taking Kant's philosophy in new and interesting directions Clarifies Kant's legacy for applied ethics, helping us to understand how these debates have been structured historically and providing us with the philosophical tools to address them
Morality : The Why and the What of ItThis book invites philosophers and their students to consider two of the most fundamental questions in moral and political philosophy: Why be moral? And, what does morality require? Distinguished philosopher James P. Sterba presents his unique views on these topics. Sterba first argues from rationality to morality and then from morality to substantial equality. Prominent scholars Charles W. Mills, Candace A. Vogler, Anita Superson, Russ Shafer-Landau, Allan F. Gibbard, Gerald Gaus, and Tibor Machan provide thought-provoking critical responses. In the final part, Sterba addresses these critiques, inviting readers to explore the various arguments and reach their own conclusions on these fundamental questions of moral and political philosophy. Morality: The Why and What of It is an essential text for all students and scholars of ethics and political philosophy.
The Oxford Handbook of ConsequentialismConsequentialism is a major moral theory in contemporary philosophy: it is the view that the only thing that matters when making moral decisions is the outcome of those decisions. Consequentialists hold that to morally assess an act, we must first evaluate and rank the various ways that thingscould turn out depending on whether it or some alternative act is performed. Whether we should perform that act thus depends on how its outcome ranks relative to those of its alternatives. Consequentialism rivals deontology, contractualism, and virtue ethics, but, more importantly, it has influencedcontemporary moral philosophy such that the consequentialist/non-consequentialist distinction is one of the most central in normative ethics. After all, every plausible moral theory must concede that the goodness of an act's consequences is something that matters, even if it's not the only thingthat matters. Thus, all plausible moral theories will accept that both 1) an act's producing good consequences constitutes a moral reason to perform it, and 2) the better its consequences, the more of a moral reason there is to perform it. In this way, much of consequentialist ethical theory isimportant for normative ethics in general.This Oxford Handbook contains thirty-two previously unpublished contributions by top moral philosophers examining the current state of play in consequentialism and pointing to new directions for future research. The volume is organized into four major sections: foundational issues; objections toconsequentialism; its forms and limits; and consequentialism's implications for policy, practice, and social reform.
Philosophy: Environmental EthicsThis volume is composed of twelve chapters covering such topics as population, novel ecoysystem, geoengineering, climate change, animal ethics, conciliation, and extinction. The use of film, literature, art, case studies, and other disciplines or situations/events provide illustrations of human experiences which work as gateways to questions philosophers try to address.
Philosophy: Medical EthicsThe Macmillan Interdisciplinary Handbooks: Philosophy series serves undergraduate college students who have had little or no exposure to philosophy, as well as the curious lay reader. Following this first primer volume, which introduces both the discipline and the topics of the remaining nine volumes, each handbook will usher the reader into a subfield of philosophy (see list of titles below), and explore fifteen to thirty topics in that subfield. Every chapter in each volume will use vehicles such as film to facilitate understanding of philosophical issues; for example, the film Dead Man Walking may be used as an introduction to issues related to the death penalty.
The Philosophy of TV NoirFilm noir reflects the fatalistic themes and visual style of hard-boiled novelists and many émigré filmmakers in 1940s and 1950s America, emphasizing crime, alienation, and moral ambiguity. In The Philosophy of TV Noir, Steven M. Sanders and Aeon J. Skoble argue that the legacy of film noir classics such as The Maltese Falcon, Kiss Me Deadly, and The Big Sleep is also found in episodic television from the mid-1950s to the present. In this first-of-its-kind collection, contributors from philosophy, film studies, and literature raise fundamental questions about the human predicament, giving this unique volume its moral resonance and demonstrating why television noir deserves our attention. The introduction traces the development of TV noir and provides an overview and evaluation of the book's thirteen essays, each of which discusses an exemplary TV noir series. Realism, relativism, and integrity are discussed in essays on Dragnet, Naked City, The Fugitive, and Secret Agent. Existentialist themes of authenticity, nihilism, and the search for life's meaning are addressed in essays on Miami Vice, The Sopranos, Carnivale, and 24. The methods of crime scene investigation in The X-Files and CSI are examined, followed by an exploration of autonomy, selfhood, and interpretation in The Prisoner, Twin Peaks, The X-Files, and Millennium. With this focus on the philosophical dimensions of crime, espionage, and science fiction series, The Philosophy of TV Noir draws out the full implications of film noir and establishes TV noir as an art form in its own right.
The Routledge Guidebook to Aristotle's Nicomachean EthicsWritten by one of the most important founding figures of Western philosophy, Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics represents a critical point in the study of ethics which has influenced the direction of modern philosophy. The Routledge Guidebook to Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics introduces the major themes in Aristotle's great book and acts as a companion for reading this key work, examining: The context of Aristotle's work and the background to his writing Each separate part of the text in relation to its goals, meanings and impact The reception the book received when first seen by the world The relevance of Aristotle's work to modern philosophy, its legacy and influence. With further reading included throughout, this text is essential reading for all students of philosophy, and all those wishing to get to grips with this classic work.
Sin No More : From Abortion to Stem Cells, Understanding Crime, Law, and Morality in AmericaRead the Authors' Op-Ed on the Seattle Post-Intelligencer Sin No More offers a vivid examination of some of the most morally and politically disputed issues of our time: abortion, gay rights, assisted suicide, stem cell research, and legalized gambling. These are moral values issues, all of which are hotly, sometimes violently, contested in America. The authors cover these issues in depth, looking at the nature of efforts to initiate reforms, to define constituencies, to mobilize resources, to frame debates, and to shape public opinion--all in an effort to achieve social change, create, or re-write legislation. Of the issues under scrutiny only legalized gambling has managed to achieve widespread acceptance despite moral qualms from some. Sin No More seeks to show what these laws and attitudes tell us about Americans' approach to law and morality, and about our changing conceptions of sin, crime and illegality. Running through each chapter is a central tension: that American attitudes and laws toward these victimless crimes are going through a process of normalization. Despite conservative rhetoric the authors argue that the tide is turning on each of these issues, with all moving toward acceptance, or decriminalization, in society. Each issue is at a different point in terms of this acceptance, and each has traveled different roads to achieve their current status.
When Doing the Right Thing Is ImpossibleSuppose that in an emergency evacuation of a hospital after a flood, not all of the patients can make it out alive. You are the doctor faced with the choice between abandoning these patients to die alone and in pain, or injecting them with a lethal dose of drugs, without consent, so that they die peacefully. Perhaps no one will be able to blame you whatever you decide, but, whichever action you choose, you will remain burdened by guilt. What happens, in cases like this, when, no matter what you do, you are destined for moral failure? What happens when there is no available means of doing the right thing? Human life is filled with such impossible moral decisions. These choices and case studies that demonstrate them form the focus of Lisa Tessman's arresting and provocative work. Many philosophers believe that there are simply no situations in which what you morally ought to do is something that you can't do, because they think that you can't be required to do something unless it's actually in your power to do it. Despite this, real life presents us daily with situations in which we feel that we have failed morally even when no right action would have been possible. Lisa Tessman boldly argues that sometimes we feel this way because we have encountered an 'impossible moral requirement.' Drawing on philosophy, empirical psychology, and evolutionary theory, When Doing the Right Thing Is Impossible explores how and why human beings have constructed moral requirements to be binding even when they are impossible to fulfill.
Working Virtue : Virtue Ethics and Contemporary Moral ProblemsiWorking Virtue/i is the first substantial collective study of virtue theory and contemporary moral problems. Leading figures in ethical theory and applied ethics discuss topics in bioethics, professional ethics, ethics of the family, law, interpersonal ethics, and the emotions.Virtue ethics is centrally concerned with character traits or virtues and vices such as courage (cowardice), kindness (heartlessness), and generosity (stinginess). These character traits must be looked to in any attempt to understand which particular actions are right or wrong and how we ought tolive our lives. As a theoretical approach, virtue ethics has made an impressive comeback in relatively recent history, both posing an alternative to, and, in some ways, complementing well-known theoretical stances such as utilitarianism and deontology. Yet there is still very little materialavailable that presents virtue-ethical approaches to practical contemporary moral problems, such as what we owe distant strangers, our parents, or even non-human animals. This book fills the gap by dealing with these and other pressing moral problems in a clear and theoretically nuanced manner. The contributors offer a variety of perspectives, including pluralistic, eudaimonistic, care-theoretical, Chinese, comparative, and stoic. This variety allows the reader to appreciate not only the wide range of topics for which a virtue-ethical approach may be fitting, but also the distinctive waysin which such an approach may be manifested.
Cheating : Ethics and Law in Everyday LifeCheating is deeply embedded in everyday life. The costs of the most common forms of cheating total close to a trillion dollars annually. Part of the problem is that many individuals fail to see such behavior as a serious problem. "Everyone does it" is a common rationalization, and one thatcomes uncomfortably close to the truth. That perception is also self-perpetuating. The more that individuals believe that cheating is widespread, the easier it becomes to justify. Yet what is most notable about analysis of the problem is how little there is of it. Whether or not Americans arecheating more, they appear to be worrying about it less.In Cheating, eminent legal scholar Deborah Rhode offers the only recent comprehensive account of cheating in everyday life and the strategies necessary to address it. Because cheating is highly situational, Rhode drills down on its most common forms in sports, organizations, taxes, academia,copyright infringement, marriage, and insurance and mortgages.Cheating also reviews strategies necessary to address the pervasiveness and persistence of cheating in these contexts. We clearly need more cultural reinforcement of ethical conduct. Efforts need to begin early, with values education by parents, teachers, and other role models who can display andreinforce moral behaviors. Organizations need to create ethical cultures, in which informal norms, formal policies, and reward structures all promote integrity. People also need more moral triggers that remind them of their own values. Equally important are more effective enforcement structures,including additional resources and stiffer sanctions. Finally, all of us need to take more responsibility for combatting cheating. We need not only to subject our own conduct to more demanding standards, but also to assume a greater obligation to prevent and report misconduct. Sustaining a culturethat actively discourages cheating is a collective responsibility, and one in which we all have a substantial stake.
The Complete Idiots Guide to Understanding EthicsA comprehensive reference to the business of right and wrong, this book should help the reader define a personal philosophy of life, covering virtually every aspect of applied ethics and behaviour including gender, racial, workplace and home ethics.
A Comprehensive History of Western EthicsThis book provides an engaging, thorough, and inclusive history of western ethics that encompasses both classical and modern perspectives. Author Warren Ashby speaks both to students of history and ethics and to a public interested in but often perplexed by moral values in contemporary life. Ashby embraces all who are concerned with expanding human rights, finding new ways to think about moral experience, and discovering an ethical perspective appropriate for their lives. By exploring past ethical problems, we can prepare for the future's challenges. Included with the commentary on the writings of great thinkers are in-depth discussions of Greek, biblical, and Stoic ethics; Augustine, Aquinas, and medieval views; the Renaissance, the Reformation, and ethics in the age of science; as well as the Enlightenment, Romanticism, and the last Western century.
Desires, Right and Wrong"What is 'moral' in the modern age? What is truly 'ethical'? Adler skillfully separates 'real' good from 'apparent' good, and shows how excesses--like gluttony, or the lust for power--simply mistake the means for the ends. Drawing on the entire Western philosophical tradition from Plato to Kant, Desires, Right & Wrong: The Ethics of Enough tackles some of the thorniest ethical problems facing the world today and suggests approaches that might help solve them. Adler regards happiness not as an experiential state, but as a well-lived life which attains everything that is really good--and affirms Aristotle's view of the obligations that individuals and societies owe toward justice and love. Clear and straightforward, with concrete examples, this book is for everyone, not just the philosophy student."
Ethics 101: From Altruism and Utilitarianism to Bioethics and Political Ethics: An Exploration of the Concepts of Right and WrongExplore the mysteries of morality and the concept of right and wrong with this accessible, engaging guide featuring basic facts along with an overview of modern-day issues ranging from business ethics and bioethics to political and social ethics. Ethics 101 offers an exciting look into the history of moral principles that dictate human behavior. Unlike traditional textbooks that overwhelm, this easy-to-read guide presents the key concepts of ethics in fun, straightforward lessons and exercises featuring only the most important facts, theories, and ideas. Ethics 101 includes unique, accessible elements such as: -Explanations of the major moral philosophies including utilitarianism, deontology, virtue ethics, and eastern philosophers including Avicenna, Buddha, and Confucius. -Classic thought exercises including the trolley problem, the sorites paradox, and agency theory -Unique profiles of the greatest characters in moral philosophy -An explanation of modern applied ethics in bioethics, business ethics, political ethics, professional ethics, organizational ethics, and social ethics From Plato to Jean-Paul Sartre and utilitarianism to antirealism, Ethics 101 is jam-packed with enlightening information that you can't get anywhere else!
Ethics and Cyber Warfare : The Quest for Responsible Security in the Age of Digital WarfareFrom North Korea's recent attacks on Sony to perpetual news reports of successful hackings and criminal theft, cyber conflict has emerged as a major topic of public concern. Yet even as attacks on military, civilian, and commercial targets have escalated, there is not yet a clear set ofethical guidelines that apply to cyber warfare. Indeed, like terrorism, cyber warfare is commonly believed to be a war without rules. Given the prevalence cyber warfare, developing a practical moral code for this new form of conflict is more important than ever. In Ethics and Cyber Warfare, internationally-respected ethicist George Lucas delves into the confounding realm of cyber conflict. Comparing "state-sponsored hacktivism" to the transformative impact of "irregular warfare" in conventional armed conflict, Lucas offers a critique of legal approaches togovernance, and outlines a new approach to ethics and "just war" reasoning. Lucas draws upon the political philosophies of Alasdair MacIntyre, John Rawls, and Jurgen Habermas to provide a framework for understanding these newly-emerging standards for cyber conflict, and ultimately presents aprofessional code of ethics for a new generation of "cyber warriors." Lucas concludes with a discussion of whether preemptive self-defense efforts - such as the massive government surveillance programs revealed by Edward Snowden - can ever be justified, addressing controversial topics such as privacy, anonymity, and public trust. Well-reasoned and timely, Ethics andCyber Warfare is a must-read for anyone with an interest in philosophy, ethics, or cybercrime.
Ethics and the EnvironmentWhat is the environment, and how does it figure in an ethical life? This book is an introduction to the philosophical issues involved in this important question, focussing primarily on ethics but also encompassing questions in aesthetics and political philosophy. Topics discussed include the environment as an ethical question, human morality, meta-ethics, normative ethics, humans and other animals, the value of nature, and nature's future. The discussion is accessible and richly illustrated with examples. The book will be valuable for students taking courses in environmental philosophy, and also for a wider audience in courses in ethics, practical ethics, and environmental studies. It will also appeal to general readers who want a reliable and sophisticated introduction to the field.
Experiments in EthicsAppiah explores how the new empirical moral psychology relates to philosophical ethics. He elaborates a vision of naturalism that resists both temptations and traces an intellectual genealogy of the burgeoning discipline of 'experimental philosophy'.
An Introduction to Kant's EthicsThis is the most up-to-date, brief and accessible introduction to Kant's ethics available. It approaches the moral theory via the political philosophy, thus allowing the reader to appreciate why Kant argued that the legal structure for any civil society must have a moral basis. This approach also explains why Kant thought that our basic moral norms should serve as laws of conduct for everyone. The volume includes a detailed commentary on Foundations of the Metaphysics of Morals, Kant's most widely studied work of moral philosophy. The book complements the author's much more comprehensive and systematic study Immanuel Kant's Moral Theory (Cambridge, 1989), a volume that has received the highest critical praise. With its briefer compass and non-technical style this new introduction should help to disseminate the key elements of one of the great modern philosophies to an even wider readership.
Moral Relativism and Moral ObjectivityDo moral questions have objective answers? In this great debate, Gilbert Harman explains and argues for relativism, emotivism, and moral scepticism. In his view, moral disagreements are like disagreements about what to pay for a house; there are no correct answers ahead of time, except in relation to one or another moral framework. Independently, Judith Jarvis Thomson examines what she takes to be the case against moral objectivity, and rejects it; she argues that it is possible to find out the correct answers to some moral questions. In her view, some moral disagreements are like disagreements about whether the house has a ghost. Harman and Thomson then reply to each other. This important, lively accessible exchange will be invaluable to all students of moral theory and meta-ethics.
Nicomachean EthicsIn The Nicomachean Ethics,Aristotle sets out to examine the nature of happiness. He argues that happiness consists in 'activity of the soul in accordance with virtue'-for example, with moral virtues, such as courage, generosity and justice, and intellectual virtues, such as knowledge, wisdom and insight. The Ethicsalso discusses the nature of practical reasoning, the value and the objects of pleasure, the different forms of friendship and the relationship between individual virtue, society and the State. Aristotle's work has had a profound and lasting influence on all subsequent Western thought about ethical matters.J.A.K. Thomson's translation has been revised by Hugh Tredennick, and is accompanied by a new introduction by Jonathan Barnes. This edition also includes an updated bibliography and a new chronology of Aristotle's life and works.
A Theory of the Good: A New Account of the Value of Life, Love, Freedom, Knowledge, Beauty, and the EnvironmentIn this remarkable book, Christopher Kelly offers a solution to the fundamental problem in philosophy-the nature of goodness. Philosophers are concerned with other problems—the nature of knowledge, reason, consciousness, happiness, life, beauty, love, and virtue, to name a few—but this is because these things seem good. Nihilists hold the bleak, implausible view that nothing is good. Subjectivists hold that things are good just to the extent that we desire them, while objectivists hold things are good independently of desire. Monists hold only one thing is good, their favorite candidate being pleasure. Pluralists hold that there is more than than one objective good but that nothing sensible can be said about what makes them good. Here Kelly develops a comprehensive theory of the good that is objective, monistic, and non-hedonistic. What makes things intrinsically good, according to Kelly, is a single attribute—richness. Richness can be characterized as the degree of unity in variety, unified complexity, or organic unity. The idea can be traced back to the ancients and resurfaces in the work of Leibniz, Hutcheson, and Nozick amongst others. But before Kelly no one developed this idea into a comprehensive theory of the good, one which explains and unifies a bewildering array of diverse value phenomena. Kelly’s theory both lays bare the fundamental nature of goodness and exemplifies it beautifully. It is a tour de force." Graham Oddie, author of Value, Reality, and Desire “Kelly provides the fullest exposition and defense yet of an axiology more accurate than any of its rivals. Through his work and that of a few other recent philosophers, richness theory displaces utilitarian axiology as the truest theory of value. Kelly's A Theory of the Good is clear, compelling, and engaging.
What it Means to be Moral : Why Religion is Not Necessary for Living an Ethical Life"A thoughtful perspective on humans' capacity for moral behavior." --Kirkus Reviews "A comprehensive introduction to religious skepticism." --Publishers Weekly InWhat It Means to Be Moral: Why Religion Is Not Necessary for Living an Ethical Life, Phil Zuckerman argues that morality does not come from God. Rather, it comes from us: our brains, our evolutionary past, our ongoing cultural development, our social experiences, and our ability to reason, reflect, and be sensitive to the suffering of others. By deconstructing religious arguments for God-based morality and guiding readers through the premises and promises of secular morality, Zuckerman argues that the major challenges facing the world today--from global warming and growing inequality to religious support for unethical political policies to gun violence and terrorism--are best approached from a nonreligious ethical framework. In short, we need to look to our fellow humans and within ourselves for moral progress and ethical action. "In this brilliant, provocative, and timely book, Phil Zuckerman breaks down the myth that our morality comes from religion--compellingly making the case that when it comes to the biggest challenges we face today, a secular approach is the only truly moral one." --Ali A. Rizvi, author ofThe Atheist Muslim
Would You Kill the Fat Man?A runaway train is racing toward five men who are tied to the track. Unless the train is stopped, it will inevitably kill all five men. You are standing on a footbridge looking down on the unfolding disaster. However, a fat man, a stranger, is standing next to you: if you push him off the bridge, he will topple onto the line and, although he will die, his chunky body will stop the train, saving five lives. Would you kill the fat man? The question may seem bizarre. But it's one variation of a puzzle that has baffled moral philosophers for almost half a century and that more recently has come to preoccupy neuroscientists, psychologists, and other thinkers as well. In this book, David Edmonds, coauthor of the best-selling Wittgenstein's Poker, tells the riveting story of why and how philosophers have struggled with this ethical dilemma, sometimes called the trolley problem. In the process, he provides an entertaining and informative tour through the history of moral philosophy. Most people feel it's wrong to kill the fat man. But why? After all, in taking one life you could save five. As Edmonds shows, answering the question is far more complex--and important--than it first appears. In fact, how we answer it tells us a great deal about right and wrong.
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Buddhist Ethics : A Very Short IntroductionThe latter half of the twentieth century witnessed a growing interest in Buddhism, and it continues to capture the imagination of many in the West who see it as either an alternative or a supplement to their own religious beliefs. Numerous introductory books have appeared in recent years tocater for this growing interest, but almost none devotes attention to the specifically ethical dimension of the tradition. For complex cultural and historical reasons, ethics has not received as much attention in traditional Buddhist thought as it has in the West, and publications on the subject are few and far between. Here, Damien Keown, author of Buddhism: A Very Short Introduction , illustrates how Buddhism mightapproach a range of fascinating moral issues ranging from abortion and suicide to cloning.
Christian Ethics: a Very Short IntroductionThis Very Short Introduction to Christian ethics introduces the topic by examining its sources and historical basis. D. Stephen Long presents a discussion of the relationship between Christian ethics, modern, and postmodern ethics, and explores practical issues including sex, money, and power.Long recognises the inherent difficulties in bringing together 'Christian' and 'ethics' but argues that this is an important task for both the Christian faith and for ethics.Arguing that Christian ethics are not a precise science, but the cultivation of practical wisdom from a range of sources, Long also discusses some of the failures of the Christian tradition, including the crusades, the conquest, slavery, inquistions, and the Galileo affair. Placing them in thecontext of the theory and practice of ethics and their historical persepctive, he notes the challenges they raise for Christian ethics.He concludes with a discussion of their implications in the modern era, considering how this affects our lives in the present age.
Ethics : A Very Short IntroductionOur self-image as moral, well-behaved creatures is dogged by scepticism, relativism, hypocrisy, and nihilism, by the fear that in a Godless world science has unmasked us as creatures fated by our genes to be selfish and tribalistic, or competitive and aggressive. In this 'sparklingly clear'(Guardian) introduction to ethics Simon Blackburn tackles the major moral questions surrounding birth, death, happiness, desire and freedom, showing us how we should think about the meaning of life, and how we should mistrust the soundbite-sized absolutes that often dominate moral debates.
Free Will: A Very Short IntroductionEvery day we seem to make and act upon all kinds of free choices - some of them trivial, and some so consequential that they may change the course of our life, or even the course of history. But are these choices really free? Or are we compelled to act the way we do by factors beyond ourcontrol? Is the feeling that we could have made different decisions just an illusion? And if our choices are not free, why should we be held morally responsible for our actions?This Very Short Introduction, written by a leading authority on the subject, looks at a range of issues surrounding this fundamental philosophical question, exploring it from the ideas of the Greek and medieval philosophers through to the thoughts of present-day thinkers. It provides a interestingand incisive introduction to this perennially fascinating subject.
Medical Ethics : A Very Short IntroductionIssues in medical ethics are rarely out of the media and it is an area of ethics that has particular interest for the general public as well as the medical practitioner. This short and accessible introduction provides an invaluable tool with which to think about the ethical values that lie at the heart of medicine.