Download e-book for kindle: Against Absolute Goodness (Oxford Moral Theory) by Richard Kraut

By Richard Kraut

ISBN-10: 0199844461

ISBN-13: 9780199844463

Are there issues we must always price simply because they're, comfortably, strong? if this is the case, such issues could be stated to have "absolute goodness." they might be strong simpliciter or complete cease - no longer strong for somebody, no longer strong of a sort, yet still sturdy (period). they may even be referred to as "impersonal values." reasons why we should price such issues, if there are any, may simply be the truth that they're, conveniently, good stuff. within the 20th century, G. E. Moore used to be the nice champion of absolute goodness, yet he isn't the single thinker who posits the life and value of this estate.

Against those buddies of absolute goodness, Richard Kraut the following builds at the argument he made in What is nice and Why, demonstrating that goodness isn't a reason-giving estate - in truth, there is no such factor. it's, he holds, an insidious classification of functional proposal, since it may be and has been used to justify what's damaging and condemn what's precious. Impersonal worth attracts us clear of what's strong for folks. His method for opposing absolute goodness is to go looking for domain names of functional reasoning within which it'd be considered wanted, and this leads him to an exam of a large choice of ethical phenomena: excitement, wisdom, attractiveness, love, cruelty, suicide, destiny generations, bio-diversity, killing in self-defense, and the extinction of our species. Even folks, he proposes, shouldn't be stated to have absolute worth. The specific significance of human existence rests in its place at the nice benefits that such lives typically supply.

"When one reads this, one sees the potential of genuine philosophical growth. If Kraut is true, I'd be mistaken to assert that this booklet is sweet, interval. or perhaps nice, interval. yet i'll say that, as a piece of philosophy, and in case you learn it, it truly is very good indeed." --Russ Shafer-Landau, college of Wisconsin-Madison

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Extra resources for Against Absolute Goodness (Oxford Moral Theory)

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2 Moore and Ross do not help us here, because they do not concern themselves with the category of what is good for someone. They take pleasure to be good but not also good for someone, and they take pain to be bad but not also bad for someone. What of Plato? 3 Whether that interpretation is correct is not a matter that can be adequately addressed in this book, but this can be taken as common ground: not a single line in this dialogue affirms, let alone argues, that justice (or, for that matter, anything else) is both good (period) and noninstrumentally good for someone.

I return to this point in chapter 9. Chapter 3 An Argument for Absolute Goodness It is easy to see why absolute goodness has had philosophical friends. It does not require a religious orientation or abstruse metaphysical reflection to arrive, in short order, at the conclusion that some things should be sought because they are good (period). Consider simple and innocent pleasures, for example—not wrongful pleasures, not the pleasures of a sadist, but the pleasurable sensations one feels as one sits in a nice, warm bath or the pleasure of eating a delicious 17 AG AINST ABSOLU TE G O ODNESS peach for which one has developed an appetite.

What We Owe to Each Other (Cambridge, MA: Belknap, 1998). 28 BEING GOOD AND BEING GOOD FOR SOMEONE entertain doubts about whether there is such a thing as goodness or value, but he denies that these are reason-giving properties. Before I discuss his contribution to this subject, I will explain why I believe that skepticism about absolute goodness is warranted. We have seen (in chapter 3) how tempting it is to be led to the conclusion that some things should be valued because they are good. It is time to look at reasons for resisting that conclusion.

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