Reason, Dignity and the Formal Conception of Practical Reason

American Philosophical Quarterly 24 (2):191 - 198 (1987)
It has often been held that human beings have worth and dignity because they are rational. But "reason" has meant different things to different philosophers. I argue that given what is meant by reason (practical reason) in economics, Decision theory and much moral philosophy, It is doubtful that rationality entitles a being to any special status at all. Moreover, And more generally, All historical appeals to reason to ground such claims are covert appeals to some more specific set of human capacities. The move from reason to rights, Then, Rests on certain assumptions about the good
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