David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
African Human Rights Law Journal 11 (2):532-559 (2011)
There are three major reasons that ideas associated with ubuntu are often deemed to be an inappropriate basis for a public morality. One is that they are too vague, a second is that they fail to acknowledge the value of individual freedom, and a third is that they a fit traditional, small-scale culture more than a modern, industrial society. In this article, I provide a philosophical interpretation of ubuntu that is not vulnerable to these three objections. Specifically, I construct a moral theory grounded on southern African worldviews, one that suggests a promising new conception of human dignity. According to this conception, typical human beings have a dignity in virtue of their capacity for community, understood as the combination of identifying with others and exhibiting solidarity with them, where human rights violations are egregious degradations of this capacity. I argue that this account of human rights violations straightforwardly entails and explains many different elements of South Africa’s Bill of Rights and naturally suggests certain ways of resolving contemporary moral dilemmas in South Africa and elsewhere relating to land reform, political power and deadly force.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Oritsegbubemi Anthony Oyowe (forthcoming). An African Conception of Human Rights? Comments on the Challenges of Relativism. Human Rights Review.
Similar books and articles
Thaddeus Metz (2010). Human Dignity, Capital Punishment, and an African Moral Theory: Toward a New Philosophy of Human Rights. Journal of Human Rights 9 (1):81-99.
Moeketsi Letseka (2012). In Defence of Ubuntu. Studies in Philosophy and Education 31 (1):47-60.
Thaddeus Metz (2012). African Conceptions of Human Dignity: Vitality and Community as the Ground of Human Rights. Human Rights Review 13 (1):19-37.
Thaddeus Metz (2014). Dignity in the Ubuntu Tradition. In Marcus Düwell (ed.), Cambridge Handbook on Human Dignity. Cambridge University Press. 310-18.
Thaddeus Metz (2012). Human Rights, African Perspectives. In Deen Chatterjee (ed.), Encyclopedia of Global Justice. Springer. 501-05.
Peter A. D. Beets (2012). Strengthening Morality and Ethics in Educational Assessment Through Ubuntu in South Africa. Educational Philosophy and Theory 44 (s2):68-83.
Thaddeus Metz (forthcoming). Ubuntu as a Constitutional Principle. In Stu Woolman (ed.), Constitutional Law of South Africa, 2nd Edition. Juta.
Mitra Ebadolahi, Using Structural Interdicts and the South African Human Rights Commission to Achieve Judicial Enforcement of Economic and Social Rights in South Africa.
Thaddeus Metz (2011). An African Theory of Dignity and a Relational Conception of Poverty. In John de Gruchy (ed.), The Humanist Imperative in South Africa. African Sun Media. 233--242.
Garrett Albert Duncan (2000). Race and Human Rights Violations in the United States: Considerations for Human Rights and Moral Educators. Journal of Moral Education 29 (2):183-201.
Shaoping Gan (2009). Human Dignity as a Right. Frontiers of Philosophy in China 4 (3):370-384.
Doris Schroeder (2012). Human Rights and Human Dignity. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 15 (3):323-335.
Domoka Lucinda Manda, The Importance of the African Ethics of Ubuntu and Traditional African Healing Systems for Black South African Women's Health in the Context of HIV and AIDS.
Simeon O. Ilesanmi (1995). Human Rights Discourse in Modern Africa: A Comparative Religious Ethical Perspective. Journal of Religious Ethics 23 (2):293 - 322.
Added to index2011-11-22
Total downloads72 ( #18,434 of 1,096,690 )
Recent downloads (6 months)8 ( #24,821 of 1,096,690 )
How can I increase my downloads?