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Subcategories:History/traditions: Deontological Moral Theories
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  1. Elisa Aaltola (2007). The Moral Value of Animals. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy 3:219-225.
    Altruism has often been thought to be the reason we treat animals with a certain moral respect. Animals are not moral agents who could reciprocally honour our well being, and because of this duties toward them are considered to be based on other-directed motivations. Altruism is a vague notion, and in the context of animals can be divided into at least three different alternatives. The first one equates altruism with benevolence or "kindness"; the second one argues altruism is based on (...)
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  2. Larry Alexander (2008). Scalar Properties, Binary Judgments. Journal of Applied Philosophy 25 (2):85–104.
    In the moral realm, our deontic judgments are usually (always?) binary. An act (or omission) is either morally forbidden or morally permissible. 1 Yet the determination of an act's deontic status frequently turns on the existence of properties that are matters of degree. In what follows I shall give several examples of binary moral judgments that turn on scalar properties, and I shall claim that these examples should puzzle us. How can the existence of a property to a specific degree (...)
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  3. Larry Alexander & Kimberly Kessler Ferzan (2012). Ferzander’s Surrebuttal. Criminal Law and Philosophy 6 (3):463-465.
  4. Robin Attfield (2012). Synthetic Biology, Deontology and Synthetic Bioethics. Ethics, Policy and Environment 15 (1):29 - 32.
    Paul Thompson argues that current synthetic biology amounts to synthetic genomics, comprising a ?platform? technology, and that Christopher Preston's deontological objections based on its supposed rejection of the historical process of evolution miscarry. This makes it surprising that Thompson's normative ethic consists in a deontological appeal to Kantian duties of imperfect obligation. Construed as obligations subject to choice, such constraints risk being excessively malleable where the ethical objections to deployment of this technology concern land rights and/or exploitation. Thompson's advocacy of (...)
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  5. Samuel Freeman (1994). Utilitarianism, Deontology, and the Priority of Right. Philosophy and Public Affairs 23 (4):313–349.
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  6. Phillip Goggans (2000). A Minimalist Ethic of Duty. Journal of Philosophical Research 25:431-436.
    It is proposed that an act is morally wrong just in case it is a violation of a duty not to perform that particular act. This is equivalent to the claim that acts have their moral status essentially. This theory preserves some main deontological intuitions without making problematic claims about kinds of acts.
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  7. Joseph Heath (2011). Following the Rules: Practical Reasoning and Deontic Constraint. Oxford University Press Usa.
    For centuries, philosophers have been puzzled by the fact that people often respect moral obligations as a matter of principle, setting aside considerations of self-interest. In more recent years, social scientists have been puzzled by the more general phenomenon of rule-following, the fact that people often abide by social norms even when doing so produces undesirable consequences. Experimental game theorists have demonstrated conclusively that the old-fashioned picture of "economic man," constantly reoptimizing in order to maximize utility in all circumstances, cannot (...)
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  8. Nien-Hê Hsieh, Alan Strudler & David Wasserman (2006). The Numbers Problem. Philosophy and Public Affairs 34 (4):352 - 372.
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  9. Guy Kahane (2012). On the Wrong Track: Process and Content in Moral Psychology. Mind and Language 27 (5):519-545.
    According to Joshua Greene’s influential dual process model of moral judgment, different modes of processing are associated with distinct moral outputs: automatic processing with deontological judgment, and controlled processing with utilitarian judgment. This paper aims to clarify and assess Greene’s model. I argue that the proposed tie between process and content is based on a misinterpretation of the evidence, and that the supposed evidence for controlled processing in utilitarian judgment is actually likely to reflect generic deliberation which, ironically, is incompatible (...)
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  10. F. M. Kamm (2000). Collaboration and Responsibility. Philosophy and Public Affairs 28 (3):169-204.
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  11. F. M. Kamm (1992). Review: Non-Consequentialism, the Person as an End-in-Itself, and the Significance of Status. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Public Affairs 21 (4):354 - 389.
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  12. Kiyoung Kim (2014). Human Rights: Are They Just a Tweak for the Policy Makers or Administrators? EUROPEAN ACADEMIC RESEARCH 2 (6):7760-7783.
    The human rights often are cited as an ultimate goal for the discipline of social science. It guides the UN in the pursuit of its organizational mission, and the civil democratic government generally endorses this paradigm of state rule as supreme. Nonetheless, it seems a mishap if the human rights are thought to be valued only in the courtroom or police office. They are the kind of ubiquitous concept that we could share and must share, who would be the scientists (...)
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  13. Will Kymlicka (1988). Rawls on Teleology and Deontology. Philosophy and Public Affairs 17 (3):173-190.
  14. David McCarthy (forthcoming). Probability in Ethics. In Alan Hájek & Christopher Hitchcock (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy and Probability. Oxford University Press
    The article is a plea for ethicists to regard probability as one of their most important concerns. It outlines a series of topics of central importance in ethical theory in which probability is implicated, often in a surprisingly deep way, and lists a number of open problems. Topics covered include: interpretations of probability in ethical contexts; the evaluative and normative significance of risk or uncertainty; uses and abuses of expected utility theory; veils of ignorance; Harsanyi’s aggregation theorem; population size problems; (...)
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  15. Thaddeus Metz (forthcoming). A Relational Moral Theory: Africa's Contribution to Global Ethics. Oxford University Press.
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  16. Thaddeus Metz (2016). Towards an African Moral Theory (Revised Edition). In Isaac Ukpokolo (ed.), Themes, Issues and Problems in African Philosophy. Palgrave Macmillan ch. 6.
    A mildly revised version of an article first published in the Journal of Political Philosophy (2007).
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  17. Thaddeus Metz (2015). Auf Dem Weg Zu Einer Afrikanischen Moraltheorie. In Franziska Dübgen & Stefan Skupien (eds.), Afrikanische politische Philosophie - Postkoloniale Positionen. Suhrkamp 295-329.
    German translation by Andreas Rauhut of a mildly revised version of 'Toward an African Moral Theory' (Journal of Political Philosophy 2007).
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  18. Thaddeus Metz (2011). The African Ethic of Ubuntu/Botho. In Sharlene Swarz & Monica Taylor (eds.), Moral Education in Sub-Saharan Africa. Routledge 7-24.
    In this chapter, a reprint of an article initially appearing in the Journal of Moral Education (2010), we provide a theoretical reconstruction of sub-Saharan ethics that we argue is a strong competitor to typical Western approaches to morality. According to our African moral theory, actions are right roughly insofar as they are a matter of living harmoniously with others or honouring communal relationships. After spelling out this ethic, we apply it to several issues in both normative and empirical research into (...)
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  19. Sven Nyholm (2014). Ingmar Persson, From Morality to the End of Reason (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), Pp. 336. [REVIEW] Utilitas 26 (3):321-325.
    Persson argues that common sense morality involves various “asymmetries” that don’t stand up to rational scrutiny. (One example is that intentionally harming others is commonly thought to be worse than merely allowing harm to happen, even if the harm involved is equal in both cases.) A wholly rational morality would, Persson argues, be wholly symmetrical. He also argues, however, that when we get down to our most basic attitudes and dispositions, we reach the “end of reason,” at which point we (...)
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  20. Michael Philips (1987). Moralism and the Good. Philosophical Studies 52 (1):131 - 139.
    It is often held that moral considerations take precedence over considerations of other kinds in determining what we ought to do. I contend that this claim is ambiguous and argue that objections to each interpretation of it can be met only by rejecting the other. One surprising consequence of my argument is that no deontic moral theory can effectively guide action unless it is conjoined with a theory of the good. Another interesting consequence is that the deontologists' favorite objection to (...)
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  21. Daniel N. Robinson and Rom Harre (1995). On the Primacy of Duties. Philosophy 70:513-532.
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  22. Luke Robinson (2012). Exploring Alternatives to the Simple Model: Is There an Atomistic Option? In Mark Timmons (ed.), Oxford Studies in Normative Ethics, Vol. 2. Oxford University Press
    The simple model maintains that morally relevant factors combine in a simple, additive way, like weights on a scale. Although intuitive and familiar, this model entails that certain plausible views about particular cases and how morally relevant factors combine and interact therein are false. Shelly Kagan suggests that we could accommodate the relevant views and interactions by rejecting either of two assumptions the simple model makes: that the moral status of an act is determined by the sum of the contributions (...)
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  23. Krzysztof Saja (2015). Etyka normatywna. Między konsekwencjalizmem a deontologią. Universitas.
    The primary goal of this monograph is to justify the possibility of building a hybrid theory of normative ethics which can combine ethical consequentialism, deontology and virtue ethics. The aim of the book is to demonstrate the possibility of constructing a synthetic theory from ethical traditions that are generally considered to be contradictory. In addition, I propose an outline of an original theory which tries to carry out such a synthesis. I call it Institutional Function Consequentialism. The justification for a (...)
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  24. Michael Smith (2011). Deontological Moral Obligations and Non-Welfarist Agent-Relative Values. Ratio 24 (4):351-363.
    Many claim that a plausible moral theory would have to include a principle of beneficence, a principle telling us to produce goods that are both welfarist and agent-neutral. But when we think carefully about the necessary connection between moral obligations and reasons for action, we see that agents have two reasons for action, and two moral obligations: they must not interfere with any agent's exercise of his rational capacities and they must do what they can to make sure that agents (...)
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  25. Franz Ungler (1979). Zu Fichtes Theorie des Gewissens. Wiener Jahrbuch für Philosophie 12:212-235.
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  26. Natalie Hormaz Vania (1991). Ignoring the Good and Deontological Rationality. Dissertation, University of Maryland, College Park
    This project clarifies and strengthens moral deontology and offers a deontological view of rationality. In order to do this, an unquestioned assumption, that the good always provides some reason to wish for or to promote obtaining it, is overturned. This is the pro tanto assumption. It is relied upon explicitly by the moral consequentialist and rational optimizer, and it's relied upon implicitly by the moral deontologist. I argue instead for the non pro tanto thesis, that something's being good may provide (...)
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  27. Henry Veatch (1983). Variations, Good and Bad, on the Theme of Right Reason in Ethics. The Monist 66 (1):49-70.
    Can right reason, Properly understood, Provide a justification for our moral duties? modern deontological or kantian type ethical theories generally argue that moral duties are duties to perform certain actions "without" reference to any end to be achieved. But rational action, I.E., Action dictated by practical reason cannot be other than purposive action, I.E., Action directed toward some end to be achieved. As such, Deontology must fail in its attempt to answer the question, Why be moral at all. Turning to (...)
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  28. Matt Zwolinski (2009). Review of Autonomy and Rights: The Moral Foundations of Liberalism. [REVIEW] Journal of Value Inquiry 43 (2):255-262.
    This is a review of Horacio Spector's book on the occassion of its publiaction in paperback form in 2007. The version of the review posted here includes a number of footnotes and references that had to be deleted in the final published version.
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  1. R. W. Beardsmore (1969). Consequences and Moral Worth. Analysis 29 (6):177 - 186.
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  2. J. B. Schneewind (2004). Comments on the Commentaries. Utilitas 16 (2):184-192.
    Adams 's suggestion that there must be one really right way of presenting the history of moral philosophy seems implausible to me, so I reject – with additional reasons – his charges against the structure of Invention of Autonomy. Skorupski's way of stating the ‘equal moral abilities’ thesis is not, I argue, very Kantian; a more Kantian version is not open to his objections. I am unconvinced by Schultz's claim that Sidgwick did not really hold that thesis. Deigh raises questions (...)
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Categorical and Hypothetical Imperatives
  1. Binod Agarwala (2004). Phronesis and Categorical Imperative. Indian Philosophical Quarterly 31 (1-4):119.
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  2. Maike Albertzart (2011). Missing the Target: Jonathan Dancy’s Conception of a Principled Ethics. Journal of Value Inquiry 45 (1):49-58.
  3. John Alexander (2005). Did God Violate the Categorical Imperative? Philosophy Pathways 108.
  4. Henry E. Allison (2013). The Singleness of the Categorical Imperative. In Margit Ruffing, Claudio La Rocca, Alfredo Ferrarin & Stefano Bacin (eds.), Kant Und Die Philosophie in Weltbürgerlicher Absicht: Akten des Xi. Kant-Kongresses 2010. De Gruyter 37-54.
  5. Henry E. Allison (2011). Kant's Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals: A Commentary. OUP Oxford.
    Henry E. Allison presents a comprehensive commentary on Kant's Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals . Allison pays special attention to the structure of the work and its historical and intellectual context. He argues that, despite its relative brevity, the Groundwork is the single most important work in modern moral philosophy.
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  6. Chrisoula Andreou (2007). Non-Relative Reasons and Humean Thought: If What is a Reason for You is a Reason for Me, Where Does That Leave the Humean? Metaphilosophy 38 (5):654-668.
    A variety of strategies have been used to oppose the influential Humean thesis that all of an agent’s reasons for action are provided by the agent’s current wants. Among these strategies is the attempt to show that it is a conceptual truth that reasons for action are non-relative. I introduce the notion of a basic reason- giving consideration and show that the non-relativity thesis can be understood as a corollary of the more fundamental thesis that basic reason-giving considerations are generalizable. (...)
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  7. Chrisoula Andreou (2006). Might Intentions Be the Only Source of Practical Imperatives? Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 9 (3):311 - 325.
    I focus on the broadly instrumentalist view that all genuine practical imperatives are hypothetical imperatives and all genuine practical deliberation is deliberation from existing motivations. After indicating why I see instrumentalism as highly plausible, I argue that the most popular version of instrumentalism, according to which genuine practical imperatives can take desires as their starting point, is problematic. I then provide a limited defense of what I see as a more radical but also more compelling version of instrumentalism. According to (...)
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  8. Tom P. S. Angier (ed.) (2012). Ethics: The Key Thinkers. Continuum International Pub. Group.
    Plato Tom Angier -- Aristotle Timothy Chappell -- Stoics Jacob Klein -- Aquinas Vivian Boland O.P -- Hume Peter Millican -- Kant Ralph Walker -- Hegel Kenneth Westphal -- Marx Sean Sayers -- Mill Krister Bykvist -- Nietzsche Ken Gemes and Christoph Schuringa -- Macintyre David Solomon.
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  9. Dennis J. Baker (2008). The Harm Principle Vs. Kantian Criteria for Ensuring Fair, Principled and Just Criminalisation. Australian Journal of Legal Philosophy 33 (66):66-99.
    In this paper, I consider Ripstein and Dan-Cohen's critiques of the 'harm principle'. Ripstein and Dan-Cohen have asserted that the harm principle should be jettisoned, because it allegedly fails to provide a rationale for criminalising certain harmless wrongs that ought to be criminalised. They argue that Kant's second formulation of the categorical imperative and his concept of 'external freedom' are better equipped for ensuring that criminalisation decisions meet the requirements of fairness. Per contra, I assert that Kant's deontological theory is (...)
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  10. H. Barker (1948). PATON, H. J. - The Categorical Imperative: A Study in Kant's Moral Philosophy. [REVIEW] Mind 57:93.
  11. Rüdiger Bittner (1980). Hypothetische Imperative. Zeitschrift für Philosophische Forschung 34 (2):210 - 226.
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  12. Charlie D. Broad (1950). Imperatives, Categorical and Hypothetical. The Philosopher 2:62-75.
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  13. Alex Burri & Jürg Freudiger (1990). Zur Analytizität Hypothetischer Imperative. Zeitschrift für Philosophische Forschung 44 (1):98 - 105.
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  14. Michael Cholbi (2016). Understanding Kant's Ethics. Cambridge University Press.
    Preface -/- Introduction -/- PART I -/- 1 Kant’s pursuit of the Supreme Principle of Morality -/- 2 The Categorical Imperative and the Kantian theory of value, part I -/- 3 The Categorical Imperative and the Kantian theory of value, part II -/- 4 Dignity -/- 5 Freedom, reason, and the possibility of the Categorical Imperative -/- PART II -/- 6 Objections to the Formula of Universal Law -/- 7 Three problems in Kant’s practical ethics -/- 8 Reason and sentiment: (...)
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  15. Adam Cureton (2013). From Self-Respect to Respect for Others. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 94 (2):166-187.
    The leading accounts of respect for others usually assume that persons have a rational nature, which is a marvelous thing, so they should be respected like other objects of ‘awesome’ value. Kant's views about the ‘value’ of humanity, which have inspired contemporary discussions of respect, have been interpreted in this way. I propose an alternative interpretation in which Kant proceeds from our own rational self-regard, through our willingness to reciprocate with others, to duties of respect for others. This strategy, which (...)
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  16. Grundlegung zur Metaphysik der Sitten (2002). Hypothetische Imperative. Kant-Studien: Philosophische Zeitschrift der Kant-Gesellschaft 93:42.
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  17. R. S. Downie (1984). The Hypothetical Imperative. Mind 93 (372):481-490.
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  18. James Dreier (2001). Humean Doubts About Categorical Imperatives. In Elijah Millgram (ed.), Varieties of Practical Reasoning. MIT Press 27--48.
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  19. Stephen Engstrom (1993). Allison on Rational Agency. Inquiry 36 (4):405 – 418.
    In his very rich and insightful book, Kant's Theory of Freedom, Henry Allison argues that in the first Critique Kant's reason for rejecting Humean compatibilism in favor of an incompatibilist conception of practical freedom stems, not from a specific concern to ground morality, as many have supposed, but from his general conception of rational agency, which Allison explicates in terms of the idea of practical spontaneity. Practically spontaneous rational agency is subject to imperatives and therefore distinct from Humean agency. But (...)
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  20. Daan Evers (2011). Two Objections to Wide-Scoping. Grazer Philosophische Studien 83 (13):251-255.
    Wide-scopers argue that the detachment of intuitively false ‘ought’ claims from hypothetical imperatives is blocked because ‘ought’ takes wide, as opposed to narrow, scope. I present two arguments against this view. The first questions the premise that natural language conditionals are true just in case the antecedent is false. The second shows that intuitively false ‘ought’s can still be detached even WITH wide-scope readings. This weakens the motivation for wide-scoping.
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