This paper exhorts geographers to become more active in debate about ethical research practice. It also suggests that ethical theory, practical problems, and lessons learned from postmodern thought make the prospects of establishing prescriptive codes of ethics unlikely. Instead, flexible prompts for moral contemplation might be used to encourage careful thought on matters of ethics. Because the practical feasibility of moral prompts rests on the existence of moral imaginations, it is vital to consider ways in which those imaginations might be (...) stimulated and nurtured. Professional associations and university academics have significant roles to play in this. Geographers must position themselves as effective agents in the processes by which professional research ethics are shaped rather than awaiting the potentially inappropriate outcomes of other agencies ' deliberations. (shrink)
This volume provides concise and accessible guidance on how to conduct qualitative research in human geography. It gives particular emphasis to examples drawn from social/cultural geography, perhaps the most vibrant area of inquiry in human geography over the past decade.
: In recent literature supporting a hybrid view between metaethical cognitivism and noncognitivist expressivism, much has been made of an analogy between moral terms and pejoratives. The analogy is based on the plausible idea that pejorative slurs are used to express both a descriptive belief and a negative attitude. The analogy looks promising insofar as it encourages the kinds of features we should want from a hybrid expressivist view for moral language. But the analogy between moral terms and pejorative slurs (...) is also problematic. In this paper, I argue for two main ways in which we should distinguish between two different types of pejorative terms: slurs, on the one hand, and what I call general pejorative terms, on the other. I examine the problems with the analogy between slurs and moral terms and conclude that general pejorative terms like ‘jerk’ are a better candidate on which to model the potential dual-use behavior of moral terms. So if hybrid theorists are looking for a dual-use model for moral language, they should be careful to base their analogies on general pejoratives, rather than slurs. (shrink)
In this paper I argue that, in addition to having an obligation to resist the oppression of others, people have an obligation to themselves to resist their own oppression. This obligation to oneself, I argue, is grounded in a Kantian duty of self-respect.
: In this essay, I consider the question of whether women have an obligation to confront men who sexually harass them. A reluctance to be guilty of blaming the victims of harassment, coupled with other normative considerations that tell in favor of the unfairness of this sort of obligation, might make us think that women never have an obligation to confront their harassers. But I argue that women do have this obligation, and it is not overridden by many of the (...) considerations that can override other obligations to confront wrongdoers. (shrink)
This paper focuses on some of the ethical issues which may arise when conducting research in the context of homelessness. These issues are considered from the viewpoints of researchers, research coordinators and interviewers, drawing from their extensive real world experience. In addition to negotiating the complex context of homelessness, community-based homelessness researchers need to address a number of ethical issues in research conception, design, implementation and dissemination. Although these issues are commonly considered in community-engaged research, research with people who are (...) homeless may raise exceptional challenges. Such challenges include determining the nature of informed consent; protecting research participants and researchers, and determining appropriate compensation for participation. Understanding the context of homelessness to conduct ethical research will require sharing information and joint decision-making, processes that must include members of communities within which the research participants live. Furthermore, researchers should be sensitive to the changing context of homelessness, and vigilant for new ethical challenges. (shrink)
In this paper I consider the possibility that failing to fulfill the Kantian obligation to protect one’s rational nature might actually vitiate future instances of this obligation. I respond to this dilemma by defending a novel interpretation of Kant’s views on the relation between the value we have and the respect we are owed. I argue, contra the received view among Kant scholars, that the feature in virtue of which someone has unconditional and incomparable value is not the same feature (...) in virtue of which she is owed the respect that constrains how she may be treated. So, even though someone who fails to attempt to protect her rational nature fails to respect herself in the right way, and even though this moral failing does make her lose a certain kind of value, her obligations to respect herself do not go away. (shrink)
This paper is an attempt to identify certain consonances between contemporary liberalism and classical pragmatism. I identify four of the most trenchant criticisms of classical liberalism presented by pragmatist figures such as James, Peirce, Dewey, Addams, and Hocking: that liberalism overemphasizes negative liberty, that it is overly individualistic, that its pluralism is suspect, that it is overly abstract. I then argue that these deficits of liberalism in its historical incarnations are being addressed by contemporary liberals. Contemporary liberals, I show, have (...) taken on board a surprising number of classical pragmatist insights and have responded to a surprising number of classical pragmatist criticisms. I thus argue that both contemporary pragmatism and contemporary liberalism have much to gain by joining forces. (shrink)
The goal of this paper is to argue that pragmatists interested in social justice ought to be committed to certain objective transcultural ethical ideals. In particular, I argue that we need an objective moral account of what counts as harm and flourishing for human beings. Pragmatists are usually characterized as rejecting the tenability of, or the need for, such objective standards. Instead, the question of whether a person's life is going well or badly is supposed to be answered by appealing (...) to the standards of that person's community, appealing to ever-wider communities if necessary. The problem with this approach, I believe, is that it is far too easy to find historical and contemporary examples of communities .. (shrink)
Because of the importance of Puritanism in its history, one of the forms taken by religious Angst at the end of the 19th century in New England was uneasiness about the psychological nature and validity of the conversion experience. Apart from William James and G. Stanley Hall, the leading psychologists who investigated this phenomenon were Edwin Starbuck and James Leuba. Each had a different personal stance with regard to the plausibility of religious belief. In practice their differences of opinion over (...) the psychology of conversion pivoted round the role of sexuality. In the first part of the 20th century their conflicting views brought to the fore themes that were eventually given full expression 40 years later in Paul Ricoeur’s account of the ‘hermeneutics of suspicion’. (shrink)