Download After Virtue (Bloomsbury Revelations) by Alasdair MacIntyre PDF

By Alasdair MacIntyre

Hugely arguable while it used to be first released in 1981, Alasdair MacIntyre's After advantage has when you consider that verified itself as a landmark paintings in modern ethical philosophy. during this booklet, MacIntyre sought to handle a difficulty in ethical language that he traced again to a eu Enlightenment that had made the formula of ethical ideas more and more tricky. within the look for a fashion out of this deadlock, MacIntyre returns to an past strand of moral pondering, that of Aristotle, who emphasized the significance of 'virtue' to the moral existence. greater than thirty years after its unique book, After advantage is still a piece that's most unlikely to disregard for an individual attracted to our knowing of ethics and morality this day.

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Extra info for After Virtue (Bloomsbury Revelations)

Example text

What Darwin means, I think, is that these animals are like us in having a rich, unified mental life. Darwin himself catalogs the mental attributes he finds in other mammals, basing his findings on his own and others’ observations of their behavior. It is an impressive list, including (in addition to the capacity to experience pleasure and pain [sentiency]) such emotions as terror, suspicion, courage, rage, shame, jealousy, grief, love, and affection, and such higher order cognitive abilities as curiosity, attention, memory, imagination, and reason.

While each is essential, none succeeds in unifjrlng the core concept. By contrast, the idea of respect succeeds in doing this. The rights discussed in this chapter (life, liberty, and bodily integrity) are variations on a main theme, that theme being respect. From the perspective of human rights proponents, 1 show my respect for you by respecting these rights in your life, and you show your respect for me by doing the same thing in my life. Respect is the main theme because treating one another with respectjust is treating one another in ways that respect our other rights.

One influential explanation favored by some philosophers grants that we have duties inuoluing animals but denies that we have any duties to them. It will be useful to give a name to moral theories of this type. For reasons that will become clearer as we proceed, I refer to them as indirect duty views. The present chapter examines two views of this type (simple and Rawlsian contractarianism) and explains why, in the end, despite the important contributions they make, all indirect duty views are and must be unsatisfactory.

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