David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Philosophical Studies 157 (2):163-175 (2012)
How should we assess the burden of moral demands? A predominant assessment is provided by what Murphy calls the baseline of factual status-quo (FSQ): A moral theory is demanding if the level of agents’ well-being is reduced from the time they begin to comply perfectly with the theory. The aims of my paper are threefold. I will first discuss the limits of the FSQ baseline. Second, I suggest a different assessment, which examines moral demands from a whole-life perspective. My view is that even if agents’ compliance with a moral theory will not cause a substantial reduction to their existing level of well-being, the total quality of life that they may obtain from complying with this theory may still be lower than what they could have obtained by following some other moral theories. The third aim of this paper is that, through this investigation, I hope to explicate the relation between agents’ acceptance of a moral theory and the burden of demands that is created by it. I believe that we can achieve a more comprehensive understanding of the nature of moral demands by paying attention to the psychological development of agents as they accept and internalize a moral theory
|Keywords||The problem of demandingness Factual status-quo baseline Internalization Consequentialism Famine relief|
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References found in this work BETA
Bernard Arthur Owen Williams (1985). Ethics and the Limits of Philosophy. Harvard University Press.
Bernard Arthur Owen Williams (1981). Moral Luck: Philosophical Papers, 1973-1980. Cambridge University Press.
Michael Sandel (2003). Liberalism and the Limits of Justice. In Derek Matravers & Jonathan E. Pike (eds.), Journal of Philosophy. Routledge, in Association with the Open University 336-343.
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