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  1. Thomas L. Carson, Happiness, Contentment.
    Hfs paper is an analysis of the concept of contentment and its relationship to the notions of happiness and the good life. Many philosophers have argued that the concept of happiness can be defined or analyzed simply in terms of "contentment" or "being satisfied (or pleased) with one' s life."' Others have made the more modest claim that being satisfied with one' s life is necessary for being a happy person. Philosophers have also discussed the place of contentment in the (...)
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  2. Thomas L. Carson, Happiness, Contentment and the Good Life.
    tentment and its relationship to the notions of happiness and the good life. Many philosophers have argued that the concept of happiness can be defined or analyzed simply in terms of "contentment" or "being satisfied (or pleased) with one' s life."' Others have made the more modest claim that being satisfied with one' s..
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  3. Thomas L. Carson (forthcoming). Bribery and Extortion in International Business. Business Ethics in Canada.
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  4. Thomas L. Carson (2013). Free Exchange for Mutual Benefit: Sweatshops and Maitland's “Classical Liberal Standard”. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 112 (1):127-135.
    Ian Maitland defends sweatshop labor on the grounds that “A wage or labor practice is ethically acceptable if it is freely chosen by informed workers” (he calls his view “the Classical Liberal Standard,” CLS). I present several examples of economic exchanges that are mutually beneficial and satisfy the requirements of the CLS, but, nonetheless, are morally wrong. Maitland’s arguments in defense of sweatshops are unsuccessful because they depend on the flawed “CLS.” My paper criticizes Maitland’s arguments in defense of sweatshops, (...)
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  5. Thomas L. Carson (2012). A Theory of Virtue: Excellence in Being for the Good, by Robert Adams. Faith and Philosophy 29 (3):347-352.
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  6. Thomas L. Carson (2012). Divine Will/Divine Command Moral Theories and the Problem of Arbitrariness. Religious Studies 48 (4):445 - 468.
    A well-known objection to divine will/divine command moral theories is that they commit us to the view that God's will is arbitrary. I argue that several versions of divine will/divine command moral theories, including two of Robert Adams's versions of the DCT and my own divine preference theory, can be successfully defended against this objection. I argue that, even if God's preferences are somewhat arbitrary, we have reasons to conform our wills to them. It is not a fatal objection to (...)
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  7. Thomas L. Carson (2012). Reviews-Robert Adams: A Theory of Virtue: Excellence in Being for the Good. Faith and Philosophy 29 (3):347.
     
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  8. Thomas L. Carson (2010). Deception and Information Disclosure in Business and Professional Ethics. In George G. Brenkert & Tom L. Beauchamp (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Business Ethics. Oxford University Press.
     
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  9. Thomas L. Carson (2010). Lying and Deception: Theory and Practice. Oxford University Press.
    The book concludes with a qualified defence of the view that honesty is a virtue.
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  10. Thomas L. Carson (2009). Lying, Deception, and Related Concepts. In Clancy W. Martin (ed.), The Philosophy of Deception. Oxford University Press. 153--87.
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  11. Thomas L. Carson (2008). Lying. Faith and Philosophy 25 (3):332-335.
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  12. Thomas L. Carson, Mary Ellen Verdu & Richard E. Wokutch (2008). Whistle-Blowing for Profit: An Ethical Analysis of the Federal False Claims Act. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 77 (3):361 - 376.
    This paper focuses on the 1986 Amendments to the False Claims Act of 1863, which offers whistle-blowers financial rewards for disclosing fraud committed against the U.S. government. This law provides an opportunity to examine underlying assumptions about the morality of whistle-blowing and to consider the merits of increased reliance on whistle-blowing to protect the public interest. The law seems open to a number of moral objections, most notably that it exerts a morally corrupting influence on whistle-blowers. We answer these objections (...)
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  13. Thomas L. Carson (2007). Axiology, Realism, and the Problem of Evil. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 75 (2):349–368.
    Discussions of the problem of evil presuppose and appeal to axiological and metaethical assumptions, but seldom pay adequate attention to those assumptions. I argue that certain theories of value are consistent with theistic answers to the argument from evil and that several other well-known theories of value, such as hedonism, are difficult, if not impossible, to reconcile with theism. Although moral realism is the subject of lively debate in contemporary philosophy, almost all standard discussions of the problem of evil presuppose (...)
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  14. Thomas L. Carson (2007). Lying, Cheating, and Stealing. Business Ethics Quarterly 17 (2):365-365.
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  15. Thomas L. Carson (2006). The Definition of Lying. Noûs 40 (2):284–306.
    Few moral questions have greater bearing on the conduct of our everyday lives than questions about the morality of lying. These questions are also important for ethical theory. An important test of any theory of right and wrong is whether it gives an adequate account of the morality of lying. Conceptual questions about the nature of lying are prior to questions about the moral status of lying. Any theory about the moral status of lying presupposes an account of what lying (...)
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  16. Thomas L. Carson (2005). An Introduction to Mill's Utilitarian Ethics. International Philosophical Quarterly 45 (1):146-147.
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  17. Thomas L. Carson (2005). Ross and Utilitarianism on Promise Keeping and Lying: Self‐Evidence and the Data of Ethics. Philosophical Issues 15 (1):140–157.
    An important test of any moral theory is whether it can give a satisfactory account of moral prohibitions such as those against promise breaking and lying. Act-utilitarianism (hereafter utilitarianism) implies that any act can be justified if it results in the best consequences. Utilitarianism implies that it is sometimes morally right to break promises and tell lies. Few people find this result to be counterintuitive and very few are persuaded by Kant’s arguments that attempt to show that lying is always (...)
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  18. Thomas L. Carson (2005). The Morality of Bluffing: A Reply to Allhoff. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 56 (4):399 - 403.
    In a recent paper that appeared in this journal Fritz Allhoff addresses the morality of bluffing in negotiations1. He focuses on cases in which people misstate their reservation price in negotiations, e.g., suppose that I am selling a house and tell a prospective buyer that $300,000 is absolutely the lowest price that I will accept, when I know that I would be willing to accept as little as $270,000 for the house rather than continue to try to sell it. Allhoff (...)
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  19. Thomas L. Carson (2004). Conflicts of Interest and Self-Dealing in the Professions. Business Ethics Quarterly 14 (1):161-182.
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  20. Thomas L. Carson (2004). Brian Leiter, A Routledge Guidebook to Nietzsche on Morality:A Routledge Guidebook to Nietzsche on Morality. Ethics 114 (2):358-361.
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  21. Thomas L. Carson (2003). Self-Interest and Business Ethics: Some Lessons of the Recent Corporate Scandals. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 43 (4):389 - 394.
    The recent accounting scandals at Enron, WorldCom, and other corporations have helped to fuel a massive loss of confidence in the integrity of American business and have contributed to a very sharp decline in the U.S. stock market. Inasmuch as these events have brought ethical questions about business to the forefront in the media and public consciousness as never before, they are of signal importance for the field of business ethics. I offer some observations and conjectures about the bearing of (...)
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  22. Thomas L. Carson (2001). Gert on Rationality, Intrinsic Value, and the Overridingness of Morality. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 62 (2):441–446.
  23. Paul K. Moser & Thomas L. Carson (eds.) (2001). Moral Relativism: A Reader. Oxford University Press.
    Are all moral truths relative or do certain moral truths hold for all cultures and people? In Moral Relativism: A Reader, this and related questions are addressed by twenty-one contemporary moral philosophers and thinkers. This engaging and nontechnical anthology, the only up-to-date collection devoted solely to the topic of moral relativism, is accessible to a wide range of readers including undergraduate students from various disciplines. The selections are organized under six main topics: (1) General Issues; (2) Relativism and Moral Diversity; (...)
     
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  24. Thomas L. Carson (2000). Jukka Kilpi, the Ethics of Bankruptcy. Journal of Value Inquiry 34 (4):565-570.
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  25. Thomas L. Carson (1999). An Approach to Relativism. Teaching Philosophy 22 (2):161-184.
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  26. Thomas L. Carson (1998). Ethical Issues in Sales: Two Case Studies. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 17 (7):725-728.
    Ethical issues in sales are an important and neglected topic in business ethics. Roughly 9% of the U.S. work force is involved in sales of one sort or another. But very little has been written about ethical issues in sales.
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  27. Thomas L. Carson & Paul K. Moser (1998). Relativism and Normative Nonrealism. Grazer Philosophische Studien 54:115-137.
    Normative nonrealism denies, first, that some things are good or bad independently of facts about the attitudes of moral agents and, second, that attitude-independent moral facts determine what is rational. This implies that facts about what is rational are logically prior to what is moral. Nonrealism commonly assumes (a) that moral realism is false or unjustifiable, (b) that there is a conceptual connection between morality and rationality and (c) that the particular theory of rationality is the correct account of rationality. (...)
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  28. Thomas L. Carson (1997). Brandt on Utilitarianism and the Foundations of Ethics. Business Ethics Quarterly 7 (1):87-100.
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  29. Thomas L. Carson & Paul K. Moser (eds.) (1997). Morality and the Good Life. Oxford University Press.
    Contemporary moral philosophers have produced an enormous amount of rich and varied published work on virtually all the issues falling within the scope of ethics and moral philosophy. Morality and the Good Life is a comprehensive survey of contemporary ethical theory that collects thirty-four selections on morality and the theory of value. Emphasizing value theory, metaethics, and normative ethics, it is non-technical and accessible to a wide range of readers. Selections are organized under six main topics: Concepts of Goodness What (...)
     
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  30. Thomas L. Carson & Paul K. Moser (1996). Relativism and Normative Nonrealism: Basing Morality on Rationality. Metaphilosophy 27 (3):277-295.
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  31. Thomas L. Carson (1995). Perfectionism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 55 (3):719-723.
  32. Thomas L. Carson (1995). Book Review:Loyalty: An Essay on the Morality of Relationships. George Fletcher. [REVIEW] Ethics 106 (1):213-.
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  33. Thomas L. Carson (1994). Corporate Moral Agency: A Case From Literature. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 13 (2):155 - 156.
    I analyze a well-known and moving passage from John Steinbeck''s novelThe Grapes of Wrath. This passage provides an excellent illustration of one of the central questions about corporate moral agency: Is corporate moral agency anything over and above the agency of individual human beings? The passage in question is a debate about whether or not the actions of a particular company are anything over and above the actions of individual human beings.
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  34. Thomas L. Carson (1994). Conflicts of Interest. Journal of Business Ethics 13 (5):387 - 404.
    This paper has two distinct objectives. (1) I defend an analysis of the concept of a conflict of interest. On my analysis the concept of a conflict of interest is broader than is generally supposed. I argue that a very large class of cases not ordinarily regarded as conflicts of interest should be so regarded. Conflicts of interest are an integral feature of many professional relationships and do not (as is often supposed) require the existence of external financial or personal (...)
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  35. Thomas L. Carson (1993). Does the Stakeholder Theory Constitute a New Kind of Theory of Social Responsibility? Business Ethics Quarterly 3 (2):171-176.
    In arecent paper, Kenneth Goodpaster formulates three versions of the stakeholder theory of corporate social responsibility. He rejects the first two versions and endorses the third. I argue that the theory that Goodpaster defends under the name “stakeholder theory” is aversion (albeit a somewhat different version) of Milton Friedman’s theory of corporate social responsibility. I also argue that the first two formulations of the stakeholder theory which Goodpaster discusses are at most only slight modifications of other theories. I conclude by (...)
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  36. Thomas L. Carson (1993). Book Review:Moral Tradition and Individuality John Kekes. [REVIEW] Ethics 103 (4):812-.
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  37. Thomas L. Carson (1992). Gibbard's Conceptual Scheme for Moral Philosophy. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 52 (4):953 - 956.
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  38. Thomas L. Carson (1991). A Note on Hooker's "Rule Consequentialism". Mind 100 (1):117-121.
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  39. Thomas L. Carson (1991). Book Review:Human Interests: Reflections on Philosophical Anthropology. Nicholas Rescher. [REVIEW] Ethics 102 (1):166-.
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  40. Thomas L. Carson (1991). Happiness, by Lynne McFall. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 51 (4):938-942.
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  41. Thomas L. Carson (1990). Morals by Agreement. International Studies in Philosophy 22 (1):106-108.
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  42. Thomas L. Carson (1989). Could Ideal Observers Disagree?: A Reply to Taliaferro. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 50 (1):115-124.
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  43. Thomas L. Carson (1988). Courage: A Philosophical Investigation. By Douglas N. Walton. Modern Schoolman 65 (2):148-150.
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  44. Thomas L. Carson (1988). On the Definition of Lying: A Reply to Jones and Revisions. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 7 (7):509 - 514.
    Standard definitions of lying imply that intending to deceive others is a necessary condition of one's telling a lie. In an earlier paper, which appeared in this journal, Wokutch, Murrmann and I argued that intending to deceive others is not a necessary condition of one's telling a lie and proposed an alternative definition. In a reply which also appeared in this journal, Gary Jones argues that (1) our arguments fail to establish the claim that it is possible to lie (...)
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  45. Thomas L. Carson (1988). Perpetual Peace. Social Theory and Practice 14 (2):173-214.
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  46. Thomas L. Carson (1988). The Status of Morality. Modern Schoolman 65 (3):223-225.
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  47. Thomas L. Carson (1988). "Who Are We to Judge?". Teaching Philosophy 11 (1):3-14.
    The proper method for dealing with meta-ethical questions in introductory ethics courses requires that the instructor consider and address at least some of the meta-ethical views most commonly held by the instructor's own students. Too often the meta-ethical views that students bring to their courses are simply ignored,.and the relation of these views to the highly abstruse theories and positions discussed in the readings and in class is not made clear. It may be the case that many (...)
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  48. Thomas L. Carson (1987). Bribery and Implicit Agreements: A Reply to PhilipS. [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 6 (2):123 - 125.
    The author has elsewhere defended the view that accepting a bribe involves the violation of an implicit or explicit promise or understanding associated with an office or position that one occupies and that therefore it is prima facie wrong to accept a bribe. Michael Philips has criticized this position in a recent paper. He argues that (a) there are cases in which accepting a bribe violates no promises or agreements, and (b) there are cases in which there is no prima (...)
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  49. Thomas L. Carson (1987). Book Review:Doing the Best We Can: An Essay in Informal Deontic Logic. Fred Feldman. [REVIEW] Ethics 98 (1):177-.
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  50. Thomas L. Carson (1986). Hare's Defense of Utilitarianism. Philosophical Studies 50 (1):97 - 115.
    R. M. Hare's Nora/ Thinking is surely one of the most compelling defenses of utilitarianism to appear in many years. Hare defends utilitarianism at some length against the objection that it has consequences that are inconsistent with our common-sense or intuitive moral judgments. Hare also offers a positive argument for utiTitarianism. In this paper I shall only concern myself with the latter argument. In the first part of the paper, I shall set out Hare's argument in some detail. In the (...)
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