Altruism Versus Self-Interest: Sometimes a False Dichotomy

Social Philosophy and Policy 10 (1):90-117 (1993)
Abstract
In the moral philosophy of the last two centuries, altruism of one kind or another has typically been regarded as identical with moral concern. When self-regarding duties have been recognized, motivation by duty has been sharply distinguished from motivation by self-interest. I think this view is wrong: self-interest can be the motive of a moral act. My chief concern is to argue that self-interested action -- i.e., action motivated by rational self-interest -- can be moral, but the data I use to argue for this also provide compelling empirical evidence that all human motives do not reduce to self-interest, that altruism is possible.
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Joshua May (2011). Egoism, Empathy, and Self-Other Merging. Southern Journal of Philosophy 49 (s1):25-39.
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