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Profile: Laurence Thomas (Syracuse University)
  1. Laurence Thomas, Autonomy, Moral Behavior & the Self.
    UTONOMY IS VERY HIGHLY PRAISED as something that it is always good to have, and always good to have more of rather than less of.1 The idea seems to be that persons should be autonomous whatever else they might be, and that should act autonomously whatever else it is that they might do. Kantians are fond of saying that a person is autonomous if she or he chooses to live in accordance with the dictates of reason. This, in turn, directly (...)
     
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  2. Laurence Thomas, The West's Fear, Self-Indulgence, Silence Aid Terrorists.
    The terrorists will win because they have nothing to lose if they try and fail, whereas we here in the West have become so concerned with the amenities of life (such as our gas-guzzling SUVs) that, lest we should have to forgo them, we would rather appease evil itself.
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  3. Laurence Thomas (forthcoming). Friendship in the Shadow of Technology. In Steven Scalet (ed.), Morality and Moral Controversies. Abebooks.
    This essay looks at the impact that technology is having upon friendship. For as we all know, it is nothing at all to see friends at a restaurant table all engaged in texting rather than talking to one another.
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  4. Laurence Thomas (forthcoming). The Character of Friendship. In Danian Caluori (ed.), Thinking About Friendship: Historical and Contemporary Prespectives. Palgrave MacMillon.
    This essay discusss (1) the differences and commonalities between romantic love and friendship and (2) the differences and commonalities between parental love of friendship.
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  5. Laurence Thomas (2013). Being Moral and Handling the Truth. Social Philosophy and Policy 30 (1-2):1-20.
    It is generally agreed that Kant went too far in his claim that it is wrong to lie even if doing so will save an individual's life. The question remains whether it is morally permissible to tell a lie even if this does not involve saving the life of another individual. In this essay, I seek to answer this question affirmatively while at the same time setting strong constraints for when a lie (not involving saving a life) is morally permissible. (...)
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  6. Laurence Thomas (2013). Should Race Matter? Unusual Answers to the Usual Questions. Philosophical Review 122 (4):647-650.
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  7. Laurence Thomas (2012). Self‐Deception as the Handmaiden of Evil. Midwest Studies in Philosophy 36 (1):53-61.
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  8. Laurence Thomas (2011). Card , Claudia . Confronting Evils: Terrorism, Torture, Genocide . Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Pp. 350. $99.00 (Cloth). [REVIEW] Ethics 122 (1):184-188.
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  9. Laurence Thomas (2011). Liberty and a Spirit of Moral Decency. International Journal of Applied Philosophy 25 (2):243-248.
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  10. Laurence Thomas (2010). Animals and Animals. Between the Species 13 (10):11.
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  11. Laurence W. Thomas (2010). Commencement. Educational Studies 11 (2):160-160.
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  12. Todd Calder, Claudia Card, Ann Cudd, Eric Kraemer, Alice MacLachlan, Sarah Clark Miller, María Pía Lara, Robin May Schott, Laurence Thomas & Lynne Tirrell (2009). Evil, Political Violence, and Forgiveness: Essays in Honor of Claudia Card. Lexington Books.
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  13. Laurence Thomas (2009). Atrocities. In Clifton Bryant Dennis Peck (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Death and Dying. Sage Publication.
    This essay discusses the character of many atrocities that have occurred throughout human history.
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  14. Laurence Thomas (2009). What Good Am I? In Steven M. Cahn (ed.), Exploring Ethics: An Introductory Anthology. Oxford University Press.
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  15. Laurence Thomas (ed.) (2007). Contemporary Debates in Social Philosophy. Wiley-Blackwell.
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  16. Laurence Thomas (2005). Claudia Card, The Atrocity Paradigm: A Theory of Evil:The Atrocity Paradigm: A Theory of Evil. Ethics 116 (1):222-225.
  17. Laurence Thomas (2005). Morality and a Meaningful Life. Philosophical Papers 34 (3):405-427.
    This essay aims to capture the intuition that the moral person is, in virtue of being such, favored over the immoral person to lead a meaningful life. It is argued that the reason for this is that the moral person is open to affirmation from others in a way that the immoral person is not. Central to the argument is that idea of psychological health. Being affirmed by others is a fundamental aspect of being psychologically health. Thus, being moral and (...)
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  18. Laurence Thomas (2005). Moral Equality and Natural Inferiority. Social Theory and Practice 31 (3):379-404.
    This essay is a commentary upon "Race and Kant" by Thomas Hill, Jr and Bernard Boxill. They argue that although Kant in his anthropological writings took blacks to be inferior, his moral theory requires that they be shown the proper moral respect since blacks are persons nonetheless. I argue that this argument is sound, because the conception of inferiority that Kant attributed to blacks does not permit showing them the proper moral respect. Imagine a defective Mercedes Benz and a Ford (...)
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  19. Laurence Thomas, Dr. Laura: Ruminations From a Listener.
    This essay is a discussion of the radio talk show host Dr. Laura Schlessinger. It is an assessment of the moral advice that she dispenses her radio show, and kinds of criticisms to which she has been subjected.
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  20. Laurence Thomas (2003). Monique Canto‐Sperber, L'inquietude Morale Et la Vie Humaine:L'inquiétude Morale Et la Vie Humaine. Ethics 113 (3):684-692.
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  21. Laurence Thomas, Equality and the Mantra of Diversity.
    This essay is part of a symposium on affirmative action that took place at the University of Cincinnati with the distinguished legal scholar Ronald Dworkin. I argue against affirmative action. And I discuss at length the votes of Justice Sandra Day O'Connor and the dissent of Justice Clarence Thomas. I develop the idea of idiosyncratic excellence; and I argue that diversity is a weakness insofar as it (a) an excuse for social myopia and (b)an impediment to individuals seeing beyond their (...)
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  22. Laurence M. Thomas (2003). Self-Respect, Fairness, and Living Morally. In Tommy Lee Lott & John P. Pittman (eds.), A Companion to African-American Philosophy. Blackwell Pub..
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  23. Laurence Thomas (2002). [Book Chapter].
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  24. Laurence Thomas (2002). Sexual Desire, Moral Choice, and Human Ends. Journal of Social Philosophy 33 (2):178–192.
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  25. Laurence Thomas (2002). The Morally Obnoxious Comparisons of Evil: American Slavery and the Holocuast. In [Book Chapter].
    The essay discuss the issue of comparing the American Slavery and the Holocaust, and the extent to which the ideology of the American dream has fueled invidious comparisons between the two peoples. Just as murder and rape are wrongs to be understood in their own right, I argue that a like claim holds for American Slavery and the Holocuast. The essay further points out that we should be weary of supposing that wrongdoing is the sort of the thing for which (...)
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  26. Laurence Thomas (2001). Morality, Consistency, and the Self: A Lesson From Rectification. Journal of Social Philosophy 32 (3):374–381.
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  27. Laurence Thomas (2000). Book Reviews:Dignity and Vulnerability: Strength and Quality of Character. [REVIEW] Ethics 111 (1):170-173.
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  28. Laurence Thomas (2000). Group Autonomy and Narrative Identity: Blacks and Jews. In Bernard Boxill (ed.), Race and Racism. Oup Oxford.
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  29. Laurence M. Thomas & Michael E. Levin (1999). Sexual Orientation and Human Rights. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.
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  30. Anita Allen, Bernard Boxill, Joshua Cohen, R. M. Hare, Bill Lawson, Tommy Lott, Howard McGary, Julius Moravcsik, Laurence Thomas, William Uzgalis, Julie Ward, Bernard Williams & Cynthia Willett (1998). Subjugation and Bondage: Critical Essays on Slavery and Social Philosophy. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.
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  31. Laurence Thomas (1998). Living With One's Past. Philosophical Review 107 (2):307-309.
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  32. Laurence Thomas (1996). Becoming an Evil Society: The Self and Strangers. Political Theory 24 (2):271-294.
  33. Laurence Thomas (1996). [Book Review] Vessels of Evil, American Slavery and the Holocaust. [REVIEW] Ethics 106:424-448.
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  34. Laurence Thomas (1996). Virtue Ethics and the Arc of Universality: Reflections on Punzo's Reading of Kantian and Virtue Ethics. Philosophical Psychology 9 (1):25 – 32.
    While I agree with Punzo's central thesis that virtue ethics is superior to Kantian ethics, the aims of my comments are twofold. On the one hand, I draw attention to some ways in which Punzo overstates the case against Kantian ethics, noting that unattainable ideals as such are no mark against a moral theory. On the other, I build upon Punzo's insights in order to bring into sharper focus the superiority of virtue ethics. Accordingly, I distinguish between inter-species (Kantian ethics) (...)
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  35. Laurence Thomas (1995). Evil and the Concept of a Human Person. Midwest Studies in Philosophy 20 (1):36-58.
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  36. Laurence Thomas (1994). Morality and Moral Theory. Philosophical Books 35 (2):130-132.
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  37. Laurence Thomas (1994). Must We Care About Morality? Philosophical Psychology 7 (3):383 – 394.
    Moral philosophy is at its best when it takes human psychology seriously. Such are the instincts of Thomas Wren. His engaging book Caring About Morality is an attempt to offer an account of human motivation that is true to human psychology, but which captures the spirit of Kantian morality without Kantian metaphysics. I argue that there are some fundamental psychological considerations which Wren does not take into account, and which are an obstacle to the success of his project. Moral motivation, (...)
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  38. Laurence Thomas (1993). Friendship and Other Loves. In Neera Kapur Badhwar (ed.), Friendship: A Philosophical Reader. Cornell University Press. 48--64.
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  39. Laurence Thomas (1993). Moral Deference. Philosophical Forum 24 (1-3):232-250.
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  40. Laurence Thomas (1993). Moral Flourishing in an Unjust World. Journal of Moral Education 22 (2):83-96.
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  41. Laurence Thomas (1993). The Reality of the Moral Self. The Monist 76 (1):3-21.
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  42. Laurence Thomas (1992). Morality and Human Diversity. [REVIEW] Ethics 103 (1):117 - 134.
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  43. Laurence Thomas (1992). Statistical Badness. Journal of Social Philosophy 23 (1):30-41.
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  44. Laurence Thomas (1992). Liberalism and the Holocause. Social Philosophy Today 7:437-450.
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  45. Laurence Thomas (1992). Review: Morality and Human Diversity. [REVIEW] Ethics 103 (1):117 - 134.
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  46. Laurence Thomas (1991). Book Review:Act and Idea in the Nazi Genocide. Berel Lang. [REVIEW] Ethics 101 (3):666-.
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  47. Laurence Thomas (1991). American Slavery and the Holocaust: Their Ideologies Compared. Public Affairs Quarterly 5 (2):191-210.
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  48. Laurence Thomas (1991). Review: Mirrors of Society. [REVIEW] Behavior and Philosophy 19 (2):109 - 119.
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  49. Laurence Thomas (1990). The Theory and Practice of Autonomy. Philosophical Books 31 (1):38-40.
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  50. Laurence Thomas (1989). Book Review:Responsibility, Character, and the Emotions: New Essays in Moral Psychology Ferdinand Schoeman. [REVIEW] Ethics 99 (4):950-.
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