In this paper, I defend a non-skeptical intuitionist approach to moral epistemology from recent criticisms. Starting with Sinnott-Armstrong's skeptical attacks, I argue that a familiar sort of skeptical argument rests on a problematic conception of the evidential grounds of our moral judgments. The success of his argument turns on whether we conceive of the evidential grounds of our moral judgments as consisting entirely of non-normative considerations. While we cannot avoid skepticism if we accept this conception of our evidential grounds, (...) that's because accepting this conception of our evidential grounds is tantamount to accepting the skeptic's conclusion. We have nothing to fear from arguments for skepticism from skepticism. (shrink)
Previous work suggests that gender attitudes are associated with different individual and organizational factors. At the same time, ethics research suggests that many of these same variables can influence ethical reasoning in companies. In this study, we sought to combine these streams of research to investigate whether individual skepticism of women’s employment is related to ethical reasoning in a gender-based ethical situation. The results of the hierarchical regression analysis indicated that skepticism of women’s employment was (...) negatively related to the recognition that the gender-based dilemma involved an ethical problem, and that skepticism was also negatively related to judgments that the situation was unethical. These findings imply that companies should advance policies that increase tolerance for women’s employment, such as diversity training codes of conduct, and ethics training. (shrink)
In his early writings, Kant says that the solution to the puzzle of how morality can serve as a motivating force in human life is nothing less than the “philosophers’ stone.” In this dissertation I show that for years Kant searched for the philosophers’ stone in the concept of “respect” (Achtung), which he understood as the complex effect practical reason has on feeling. I sketch the history of that search in Chapters 1-2. In Chapter 3 I show that Kant’s analysis (...) in Groundwork I is incomplete because it does not explain how respect functions as a feeling in motivating choice. In Chapter 4 I argue that Kant’s subsequent attempt to sidestep this explanation in Groundwork III is unsuccessful, and that his position remains open to a skeptical threat. The argument in the second Critique, which I reconstruct in Chapters 5-6, overcomes this threat, and in doing so explains how the feeling of respect is both painful and pleasurable. -/- In the course of defending these claims, I provide an alternative reading of the shift in Kant’s ethical project from the Groundwork of 1785 to the second Critique of 1788 Against a common view in the literature, I argue that the shift does not concern the direction of Kant’s deduction (from freedom to morality, or morality to freedom); rather, it concerns his view of human sensibility and the resources he thinks we have to make our practical self-understanding intelligible. In the second Critique, I argue, Kant develops a novel approach to moral feeling from the perspective of the human agent; and this in turn clears room in his ethics for a new kind of a priori knowledge—namely, knowledge of what the activity of practical reason must feel like. By way of conclusion, I offer a few reasons for why the form of Kant’s argument in the second Critique is still relevant today, as it shows why we can only address moral skepticism from a first-personal perspective. (shrink)
What is skepticism? -- Skepticism as selective doubt -- Scientific method and rational skepticism -- Skepticism and the new enlightenment -- The growth of antiscience -- Skepticism, science, and the paranormal -- Should skeptical inquiry be applied to religion? -- Skepticism and religion -- Are science and religion compatible? -- Skepticism and political inquiry -- Skepticism and ethical inquiry -- Moral faith and ethicalskepticism reconsidered -- Skepticism and (...) eupraxsophy -- The new skepticism: a worldwide movement -- Skeptical inquiry: my personal involvement -- Science and the public: summing up thirty years of the skeptical inquirer -- The new skepticism: a statement of principles. (shrink)
In this paper, I motivate skepticism about the causal efficacy of moral properties in two ways. First, I highlight a tension that arises between two claims that moral realists may want to accept. The first claim is that physically indistinguishable things do not differ in any causally efficacious respect. The second claim is that physically indistinguishable things that differ in certain historical respects have different moral properties. The tension arises to the extent to which these different moral properties are (...) supposed to have different effects on people. I will introduce a class of cases in which this tension arises and suggest that the moral properties in these cases have no causal power. I will also question whether there are differences between the moral properties in these cases and moral properties in other cases that do not involve physically indistinguishable things that could make the latter moral properties causally efficacious. The second way that I motivate skepticism consists in pointing out a unique feature of cases in which moral properties are supposed both to supervene on historical properties and to be causally efficacious. These cases allow us to change moral properties with alleged effects while we hold constant the nonmoral candidates for causal contribution to those effects. This feature of these cases is unique because in most other cases the moral properties supervene on the physical properties in the nonmoral candidates, such that we cannot change the former while holding constant the latter. This way of changing moral properties provides empirical grounds for testing their causal efficacy. (shrink)
Let us imagine an ideal ethical agent, i.e., an agent who (i) holds a certain ethical theory, (ii) has all factual knowledge needed for determining which action among those open to her is right and which is wrong, according to her theory, and who (iii) is ideally motivated to really do whatever her ethical theory demands her to do. If we grant that the notions of omniscience and ideal motivation both make sense, we may ask: Could there (...) possibly be an ideal utilitarian, that is, an ideal ethical agent whose ethical theory says that our only moral obligation consists in maximizing utility? I claim that an ideal agent cannot be utilitarian. My reasoning against ideal utilitarianism will parallel Putnam's famous argument against the brains in a vat. Putnam argues that an envatted brain cannot describe its own situation because its words do not refer to brains and vats; I argue that an ideal utilitarian cannot entertain or communicate the beliefs necessary to being a utilitarian. (shrink)
In this article, I am concerned with the ethical foundations of behavior therapy, that is, with the normative ethics and the meta-ethics underlying behavior therapy. In particular, I am concerned with questions concerning the very possibility of providing an ethical justification for things done in the context of therapy. Because behavior therapists must be able to provide an ethical justification for various actions (if the need arises), certain meta-ethical views widely accepted by behavior therapists must be (...) abandoned: in particular, one must give up ethical subjectivism, ethicalskepticism, and ethical relativism. An additional task is to show how it is possible to provide a nonsubjective, nonskeptical, and nonrelativistic moral justification for an ethical statement. Although this is a monumental task, I provide a rough sketch of such a model, one that is congenial to the value judgments underlying behavior therapy. (shrink)
According to global skepticism, we know nothing. According to local skepticism, we know nothing in some particular area or domain of discourse. Unlike their global counterparts, local skeptics think they can contain our invincible ignorance within limited bounds. I argue that they are mistaken. Local skepticism, particularly the kinds that most often get defended, cannot stay local: if there are domains whose truths we cannot know, then there must be claims outside those domains that we cannot know (...) even if they are true. My argument focuses on one popular form of local skepticism, ethicalskepticism, but I believe that the argument generalizes to cover other forms as well. (shrink)
This reissue of an American philosophical classic includes a new preface by Cavell, in which he discusses the work's reception and influence. The work fosters a fascinating relationship between philosophy and literature both by augmenting his philosophical discussions with examples from literature and by applying philosophical theories to literary texts. Cavell also succeeds in drawing some very important parallels between the British analytic tradition and the continental tradition, by comparing skepticism as understood in Descartes, Hume, and Kant with philosophy (...) of language as practiced by Wittgenstein and Austin. (shrink)
Machine generated contents note: Introduction; 1. Naturalism in moral philosophy Gilbert Harman; 2. Normativity and reasons: five arguments from Parfit against normative naturalism David Copp; 3. Naturalism: feel the width Roger Crisp; 4. On ethical naturalism and the philosophy of language Frank Jackson; 5. Metaethical pluralism: how both moral naturalism and moral skepticism may be permissible positions Richard Joyce; 6. Moral naturalism and categorical reasons Terence Cuneo; 7. Does analytical moral naturalism rest on a mistake? Susana Nuccetelli and (...) Gary Seay; 8. Supervenience and the nature of normativity Michael Ridge; 9. Can normativity be naturalized? Robert Audi; 10. Ethical non-naturalism and experimental philosophy Robert Shaver; 11. Externalism, motivation, and moral knowledge Sergio Tenenbaum; 12. Naturalism, absolutism, relativism Michael Smith. (shrink)
This is the first comprehensive study of the ethics of G. E. Moore, the most important English-speaking ethicist of the twentieth century. Moore's ethical project, set out in his seminal text Principia Ethica, is to preserve common moral insight from skepticism and, in effect, persuade his readers to accept the objective character of goodness. Brian Hutchinson explores Moore's arguments in detail and in the process relates the ethical thought to Moore's anti-skeptical epistemology. Moore was, without perhaps fully (...) realizing it, skeptical about the very enterprise of philosophy itself, and in this regard, as Brian Hutchinson reveals, was much closer in his thinking to Wittgenstein than has been previously realized. This book shows Moore's ethical work to be much richer and more sophisticated than his critics have acknowledged. (shrink)
The paper begins with an example of the accounting treatment afforded an Indefeasible Rights Use (IRU) Swap by Global Crossing. The case presents a typical example of ways in which accounting firms contributed to the ethical scandals of the early 21st century. While the behavior of Arthur Andersen, the accounting company in the case, might have met the letter of the law, we argue that it violated the spirit of the law, which can be discovered by looking at (1) (...) the legitimate goals of a company which give it its ethical direction and (2) the responsibilities of the accounting professionals who serve the company and the general public. Those professional responsibilities are determined by looking at the legitimate function those professionals fulfill in the economy. A further claim is that Andersen and other accounting firms are motivated to abandon the responsibilities derived from pursuing their proper goals by falling into the trap of accumulating wealth for its own sake. We argue that the ultimate responsibility of internal auditors is to develop statements that give as reasonably true and fair a picture of the financial situation to any user having a claim to that knowledge. Further we argue that the major responsibilities of the external auditor are: first, to be responsible to the using public for evaluating financial statements and declaring that they represent a fair picture of the financial situation of a company, and second, to be a watchdog of financial markets and call into question irregular practices that would distort those pictures. Such due professional care requires the auditor to exercise professional skepticism: an attitude that includes a questioning mind and a critical assessment of audit evidence. The paper concludes by giving particular examples of how Arthur Andersen LLP failed to meet those responsibilities. (shrink)
Because of historical mistreatment of ethnic minorities by research and medical institutions, it is particularly important for researchers to be mindful of ethical issues that arise when conducting research with ethnic minority populations. In this article, we focus on the ethical issues related to the inclusion of ethnic minorities in clinical trials of psychosocial treatments. We highlight 2 factors, skepticism and mistrust by ethnic minorities about research and current inequities in the mental health care system, that researchers (...) should consider when developing psychosocial interventions studies that include ethnic minorities. (shrink)
Leaders play a critical role in setting the tone for ethical climate in organizations. In recent years, there has been an increased skepticism about the role played by corporate executives in developing and implementing ethics in business practices. Sales and marketing practices of businesses, particularly in the pharmaceutical industry, have come under increased scrutiny. This study identifies a type of leadership style that can help firms develop an ethical climate. Responses from 333 salespeople working for a North (...) American subsidiary of an international pharmaceutical company were used to analyze the impact of instrumental leadership on ethical climate. We also examined the effect of ethical climate on effort, satisfaction with the supervisor, and job satisfaction. Managerial implications are provided. (shrink)
The Human Genome Project (HGP) represents a massive merging of science and technology in the name of all humanity. While the disease aspects of HGP-generated data have received the greatest publicity and are the strongest rationale for the project, it should be remembered that the HGP has, as its goal the sequencing of all 100,000 human genes and the accurate depiction of the ancestral and functional relationships among these genes. The HGP will thus be constructing the molecular taxonomic norm for (...) humanity. Currently the HGP genomic baseline is almost exclusively skewed toward North Atlantic European lineages through the extensive use of the Centre d’Études du Polymorphisme Humaine (CEPH) data set. More recently, the HGP has shifted to the use of volunteer donors since adequate informed consent had not been secured from the CEPH families. No evidence exists that either the CEPH families or the current volunteers are the most appropriate demographic or evolutionary lineages for the functional genomic studies that will guide production of new DNA based drugs, targeted therapeutics and gene-based diagnostics. The lack of scientific representativeness of the HGP is a serious impediment to its broad applicability. Yet this can be remedied, and five alternative sampling strategies are presented. In response to the current exclusionary design of the HGP, there is noteworthy caution and skepticism in the African American community concerning genetic studies. The Manifesto on Genomic Studies Among African Americans reflects both a desire to be systematically included in federally funded genomic studies and a desire to maintain some control over the interpretation and application of research results. Representative sampling in the HGP is seen as an international human rights issue with domestic ethical implications. (shrink)
In this book, I consider whether the hypothesis of moral dilemmas undermines ethics' pretensions to objectivity. I argue against the view that moral dilemmas challenge the very possibility of ethical theory, as a practical and theoretical enterprise. By examining Kantian, Intuitionist and Utilitarian arguments about moral dilemmas, I show that no ethical theory is capable of avoiding them. I further argue that an adequate ethical theory should admit dilemmas. Dilemmas do not reveal a logical or normative flaw (...) in the theory that permits them to arise, nor are they necessarily generated by subjective mistakes. Rather, dilemmas are a sign of the deliberative capacity of an agent who operates in non-ideal conditions of rationality and cooperation. The inevitability of moral dilemmas shows that we should reconsider the bounds of deliberation, and the purposes of ethical theory. My argument for the philosophical significance of moral dilemmas rests on the claim that an adequate ethical theory should make sense of moral phenomenology, and that moral phenomenology should to be understood from the perspective of an agent who conceives of herself as an agent. The view of moral dilemmas I advocate does not invite skepticism about ethical theory, but suggests that we redefine its scope and its many practical aims. (shrink)
In the history of philosophical thought, few themes loom as large as skepticism. Skepticism has been the most visible and important part of debates about knowledge. Skepticism at its most basic questions our cognitive achievements, challenges our ability to obtain reliable knowledge; casting doubt on our attempts to seek and understand the truth about everything from ethics, to other minds, religious belief, and even the underlying structure of matter and reality. Since Descartes, the defense of knowledge against (...)skepticism has been one of the primary tasks not just of epistemology but philosophy itself. The Oxford Handbook of Skepticism features twenty-six newly commissioned chapters by top figures in the field. Part One contains articles explaining important kinds of skeptical reasoning. Part Two focuses on responses to skeptical arguments. Part Three concentrates on important contemporary issues revolving around skepticism. As the first volume of its kind, the articles make significant contributions to the debate on skepticism. (shrink)
In recent years there has been growing attention paid to a kind of human action or activity which does not issue from a process of reflection and deliberation and which is described as, e.g., ‘engaged coping’, ‘unreflective action’, and ‘flow’. Hubert Dreyfus, one of its key proponents, has developed a phenomenology of expertise which he has applied to ethics in order to account for ‘everyday ongoing ethical coping’ or ‘ethical expertise’. This article addresses the shortcomings of this approach (...) by examining the pre-reflective ethical know-how individuals first develop and on which all later forms of ethical expertise are dependent. In the first section an account is given of the ‘ethical second nature’ which every individual develops from childhood onwards and which forms the basis of pre-reflective ethical know-how. The acquisition of an ethical second nature early on opens up the very domain of ‘the ethical’ for us in the first place and is constitutive of our sensitivity to it. The second section turns to pre-reflective ethical know-how and whether it is conceptual in nature. Just as sensorimotor understanding forms the basis of our reflective perceptual concepts, pre-reflective ethical know-how is similarly proto-conceptual and is the source of our reflective ethical and moral concepts. Finally, the third section examines the process whereby ethical second nature and pre-reflective ethical know-how are actually acquired, namely, through immersion in an ‘ethical world’. This world consists of both the web of ethical meanings and significances which has evolved in a particular society or community as well as its members whose actions and interactions continually reproduce that web. (shrink)
This dissertation is a critique of synthetic ethical naturalism (SEN). SEN is a view in metaethics that comprises three key theses: first, there are moral properties and facts that are independent of the beliefs and attitudes of moral appraisers (moral realism); second, moral properties and facts are identical to (or constituted only by) natural properties and facts (ethical naturalism); and third, sentences used to assert identity or constitution relations between moral and natural properties are expressions of synthetic, a (...) posteriori necessities. The last of these theses, which distinguishes SEN from other forms of ethical naturalism, is supported by a fourth: the semantic contents of the central moral predicates such as 'morally right' and 'morally good' are fixed in part by features external to the minds of speakers (moral semantic externalism). Chapter 1 introduces SEN and discusses the most common motivations for accepting it. The next three chapters discuss the influential "Moral Twin Earth" argument against moral semantic externalism. In Chapter 2, I defend this argument from the charge that the thought experiment upon which it depends is defective. In Chapters 3 and 4, I consider two attempts to amend SEN so as to render it immune to the Moral Twin Earth argument. I show that each of these proposed amendments amounts to an abandonment of SEN. Chapter Five explores Richard Boyd's proposal that moral goodness is a "homeostatic property cluster." If true, Boyd's hypothesis could be used to support several metaphysical, epistemological, and semantic claims made on behalf of SEN. I advance three arguments against this account of moral goodness. In the sixth chapter, I argue that moral facts are not needed in the best a posteriori explanations of our moral beliefs and moral sensibility. Because of this, those who accept a metaphysical naturalism ought to deny the existence of such facts or else accept skepticism about moral knowledge. In Chapter 7, I consider a counterargument on behalf of SEN to the effect that moral facts are needed in order to explain the predictive success of our best moral theories. I show that this argument fails. (shrink)
The paper argues that everyday ethical expertise requires an openness to an experience of self-doubt very different from that involved in becoming expert in other skills—namely, an experience of profound vulnerability to the Other similar to that which Emmanuel Levinas has described. Since the experience bears a striking resemblance to that of undergoing cross-examination by Socrates as depicted in Plato’s early dialogues, I illustrate it through a close reading of the Euthyphro, arguing that Euthyphro’s vaunted “expertise” conceals a reluctance (...) to submit himself to the basic process of self-redefinition that results from learning the limits of one’s knowledge. I show how the dialogue itself models the disruptive experience of selfquestioning that leads to moral maturity, providing further evidence that expertise has an important non-cognitive element, as well as casting doubt on the ethical value of seeking “definitions” of the virtues. (shrink)
The ethics of the Zhuāngzi is distinctive for its valorization of psychological qualities such as open-mindedness, adaptability, and tolerance. The paper discusses how these qualities and their consequences for morality and politics relate to the text’s views onskepticism and value. Chad Hansen has argued that Zhuangist ethical views are motivated by skepticism about our ability to know a privileged scheme of action-guiding distinctions, which in turn is grounded in a form of relativism about such distinctions. Against this, Icontend (...) that the Zhuāngzi’s skepticism and its ethical stance jointly rest on a metaethical view of value as inherently plural, perspectival, heterogeneous, and contingent. This view provides grounds for moral consideration toward others and for political liberalism. It also explains how the psychological qualities valorized in the Zhuāngzi contribute to the value of our individual lives, by showing what their absence costs us. (shrink)
This chapter focuses on the responses that proponents of virtue epistemology (VE) make to radical skepticism and particularly to two related forms of it, Pyrrhonian skepticism and the “underdetermination-based” argument, both of which have been receiving widening attention in recent debate. Section 1 of the chapter briefly articulates these two skeptical arguments and their interrelationship, while section 2 explains the close connection between a virtue-theoretic and a neo-Moorean response to them. In sections 3 and 4 I advance arguments (...) for improving the prospects of virtue-theoretic responses, sketching a particular version of VE that by recasting somewhat how we understand the “externalist turn in epistemology” also suggests ways of improving the adequacy of philosophical diagnoses and responses to skepticism. (shrink)
Glasgow's conception of the doctrine of ethical egoism - that everyone ought to promote his own interest - is mistaken. Ethical egoism rightly understood holds no such doctrine or normative principle, and regards the promotion of one's own interest neither a "duty" nor an "ought." Everyone does in fact promote his own interests.
To determine the knowledge, attitude, and ethical concerns of medical students and graduates with regard to Embryonic Stem Cell (ESC) research. This questionnaire based descriptive study was conducted at the Civil Hospital Karachi (CHK), Pakistan from February to July 2008. A well structured questionnaire was administered to medical students and graduate doctors, which included their demographic profile as well as questions in line with the study objective. Informed consent was taken and full confidentiality was assured to the participants. Data (...) were entered in a Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS version.12) and analyzed. A total of 204 male and 216 female medical students and doctors were administered questionnaires out of which 105 males (51.4%) and 108 females (50%) were aware of the embryonic stem cell research and its ethical implications. Forty percent males and 47% of females were of the opinion that life begins at conception. Forty-six percent males and 39% females were in favor of stem cell research while only 31% males and 28% females supported the ESC research. Less than 1/3 of students supported using frozen embryos for research purposes while more than 2/3 indicated that they were unlikely to support abortion for stem cell research purposes. The majority of the students were in favor of stem cell research with some reservations regarding ESC research. A sizeable number of students withheld their views, reflecting their poor understanding of medical ethics. The result of the study indicates a need for incorporating bioethics into the medical curriculum. (shrink)
This study explores the opinions of Polish and South African management students regarding the ethical conduct exhibited by organisations specific to their respective home countries. Through the use of a survey, primary data were collected via a self-administered questionnaire. Non-probability sampling in the form of a quota sample was employed, and a target of 250 respondents was pursued at a South African and a Polish university respectively. The data were subjected to SPSS. The findings showed that students in South (...) Africa and Poland have little faith in organisations perceived to be conducting business in an ethical fashion. Interesting similarities and differences in Polish and South African opinion were also identified. (shrink)
The use of subtherapeutic doses of antibiotics in food-producing animals has been linked to antibiotic resistant infections in humans. Although this practice has been banned in Europe, the U.S. regulatory authorities have been slow to act. This paper discusses the regulatory hurdles and ethical dilemmas of banning this practice within the context of the risk analysis model (risk assessment, risk management, and risk communication). Specific issues include unethical use of scientific uncertainty during the risk assessment phase, the rejection of (...) the precautionary principle leading to ineffective risk management, and the criticality of risk communication to build consensus and force action. The underlying root cause is a conflict of values (Type I ethical problem) among key stakeholders, which is examined in depth along with an ethical analysis using public health ethical values. (shrink)
Many journals in the physical sciences require authors to submit assurances of compliance with human subjects and other research ethics standards. These requirements do not cover all disciplines equally, however. In this paper we report on the findings of a survey of perceptions of ethical and managerial problems from journal editors in political science and related disciplines. Our results show that few journals in political science require assurance statements common to journals for other scientific disciplines. We offer some reasons (...) for this as well as some recommendations for implementing ethical assurance safeguards for political science. (shrink)
Ethical consumption is on the rise, however little is known about the degree and the implications of the sometime conflicting sets of values held by the broad category of consumers who report consuming ethically. This paper explores convergence and divergence of ethical consumption values through a study of organic, fair trade, and local food consumers in Colorado. Using survey and focus group results, we first examine demographic and attitudinal correlates of ethical consumption. We then report evidence that (...) while many organic, fair trade, and local food consumers converge around similar values, some Colorado consumers support only local food, while opposing the consumption of organic and fair trade products. Next, we investigate how ethical consumers who converge and diverge frame their commitment to consuming ethically. The discussion and conclusion suggest that community development planners of projects that focus on ethical consumption will need to successfully traverse issues stemming from convergence and divergence to enjoy long-term sustained success. (shrink)
Background Even though we are now well into the 21st century and notwithstanding all the abuse to individuals involved in clinical studies that has been documented throughout History, fundamental ethical principles continue to be violated in one way or another. Discussion Here are some of the main factors that contribute to the abuse of subjects participating in clinical trials: paternalism, improper use of informed consent, lack of strict ethical supervision, pressure exerted by health institutions to increase the production (...) of scientific material, and the absence of legislation regarding ethics in terms of health care and research. Are researchers ready to respect fundamental ethical principles in light of the ample window of information provided by individual genomes, while defending the rights of the subjects participating in clinical studies as a major priority? Summary As one of the possible solutions to this problem, education regarding fundamental ethical principles is suggested for participants in research studies as an initial method of cognitive training in ethics, together with the promotion of ethical behavior in order to encourage the adoption of reasonable policies in the field of values, attitudes and behavior. (shrink)
Millions of people undergo displacement in the world. Internally displaced people (IDP) are especially vulnerable as they are not protected by special legislation in contrast to other migrants. Research conducted among IDPs must be correspondingly sensitive in dealing with ethical issues that may arise. Muslim IDPs in Puttalam district in the North-Western province of Sri Lanka were initially displaced from Northern Sri Lanka due to the conflict in 1991. In the backdrop of a study exploring the prevalence of common (...) mental disorders among the IDPs, researchers encountered various ethical challenges. These included inter-related issues of autonomy, non-maleficence, beneficence, confidentiality and informed consent, and how these were tailored in a culture-specific way to a population that has increased vulnerability. This paper analyses how these ethical issues were perceived, detected and managed by the researchers, and the role of ethics review committees in mental health research concerning IDPs. The relevance of guidelines and methodologies in the context of an atypical study population and the benefit versus risk potential of research for IDPs are also discussed. The limitations that were encountered while dealing with ethical challenges during the study are discussed. The concept of post-research ethical conduct audit is suggested to be considered as a potential step to minimize the exploitation of vulnerable populations such as IDPs in mental health research. (shrink)
Living labs represent an important step in the development of research solutions based on the inclusive design paradigm. To ensure participants' rights and the adoption of an ethical approach to technological research, this paper presents some tools and strategies that comply with the needs and rights of those less advantaged groups to ensure that their rights and demands are taken into account. There is a gap in the construction and development of norms for a living lab. This article summarizes (...) the efforts made to achieve the goals of ethical awareness, enumerates the issues related to the ethical problems that may arise during participatory design and living labs environments, describes working routines, and outlines recommendations for achieving this objective. This paper attempts to focus on those aspects of research development that directly or indirectly come into contact with issues of ethics, privacy, and security related to participants in the context of any research conducted using a living lab approach. It also includes thoughts about the importance of information and communication technologies on the public domain and their implications for privacy. The importance of ethical awareness is even more evident in the case of enterprises where elderly and disabled users are present. For that reason, there are several legal tools that can be applied in a living lab setting, tools that are pertinent even though they may not have been conceived specifically to regulate this environment, may be used in a precarious way and might be temporary as well, just to proceed with the setting up of the living lab. However, the specificity and idiosyncrasy of this research environment demands further efforts to establish procedures that will facilitate both the proper set-up and smooth running of the living lab. (shrink)
Most forms of virtue ethics are characterized by two attractive features. The first is that proponents of virtue ethics acknowledge the need to describe how moral agents acquire or develop the traits and abilities necessary to become morally able agents. The second attractive feature of most forms of virtue ethics is that they are forms of moral realism. The two features come together in the attempt to describe virtue as a personal ability to distinguish morally good reasons for action. It (...) follows from the general picture of virtue ethics presented here that we cannot evaluate ethical judgment independently of the viewpoint of the ideal of a virtuous person. We will examine how this ideal unfolds in the realistic form of virtue ethics advanced by John McDowell. McDowell offers a compelling description of virtue as a natural ability grounded in human nature, while at the same time insisting that we cannot understand the judgment resulting from virtue without drawing on that very perspective. However, McDowell’s focus on the passive taking in of reasons in ethical experience and his idea of the silencing of wrong reasons lead us to three related problems. The first is that he cannot account for certain features of the phenomenology of such experience; the second is that he cannot provide any relevant epistemological criteria for correct moral judgment; and the third is that he gives a morally objectionable characterization of the ideal of being a virtuous person. All of these problems arise because McDowell does not take into account the particular nature of ethical experience. If we try to resolve this problem by dropping McDowell’s idea of silencing, we then have to offer another substantial description of our ideal of a virtuous person that includes active and interpersonal ways of evaluating concrete judgments. Proponents of virtue ethics still have to lift this task and develop a position that does not limit ethical experience to the passive intake of reasons. (shrink)
The main claim of this essay is that knowledge is no more valuable than lasting true belief. This claim is surprising. Doesn't knowledge have a unique and special value? If the main claim is correct and if, as it seems, knowledge is not lasting true belief, then knowledge does not have a unique value: in whatever way knowledge is valuable, lasting true belief is just as valuable. However, this result does not show that knowledge is worthless, nor does it undermine our knowledge gathering practices. There (...) is, rather, a positive philosophical payoff: skepticism about knowledge is defused. Assuming one can have lasting true belief, then even if one cannot have knowledge, one can have something just as valuable. . (shrink)
In this paper I criticize libertarianism and skepticism about free will. The criticism of libertarianism takes some steps towards filling in an argument that is often mentioned but seldom developed in any detail, the argument that libertarianism is a scientifically implausible view. I say "take some steps" because I think the considerations I muster (at most) favor a less ambitious relative of that argument. The less ambitious claim I hope to motivate is that there is little reason to believe (...) that extant libertarian accounts satisfy a standard of naturalistic plausibility, even if they do satisfy a standard of naturalistic compatibility. The argument against skepticism about free will tries to show (1) perhaps the most prominent form of skeptical argument against the existence of free will does not work, and (2) there is a good general argument against skepticism about free will. (shrink)
Fallibilism is ubiquitous in contemporary epistemology. I argue that a paradox about knowledge, generated by considerations of truth, shows that fallibilism can only deliver knowledge in lucky circumstances. Specifically, since it is possible that we are brains-in-vats (BIVs), it is possible that all our beliefs are wrong. Thus, the fallibilist can know neither whether or not we have much knowledge about the world nor whether or not we know any specific proposition, and so the warrant of our knowledge-claims is much (...) reduced and second-order skepticism is generated. Since this is the case in both skeptical and everyday contexts, contextualism cannot resolve the paradox. (shrink)
John McDowell has argued that for human needs to matter in practical deliberation, we must have already acquired the full range of character traits that are imparted by an ethical upbringing. Since our upbringings can diverge considerably, his argument makes trouble for any Aristotelian ethical naturalism that wants to support a single set of moral virtues. I argue here that there is a story to be told about the normal course of human life according to which it is (...) no coincidence that there is agreement on the virtues. Because we are creatures who arrive at personhood only by learning from others in a relation of dependency, we cannot help but see ourselves as creatures for whom non-instrumental rationality is the norm. Those who train others in personhood must view the trainee's interests as having a value independent of their interests and must imbue the trainee with a sense of that value. Extending and preserving the sense of self-worth that we must acquire if we are to acquire personhood requires we see ourselves as creatures who need something like the virtues. (shrink)
Abstract: In Mind and World, McDowell conceives of the content of perceptual experiences as conceptual. This picture is supposed to provide a therapy for skepticism, by showing that empirical thinking is objectively and normatively constrained. The paper offers a reconstruction of McDowell's view and shows that the therapy fails. This claim is based on three arguments: 1) the identity conception of truth he exploits is unable to sustain the idea that perception-judgment transitions are normally truth conducing; 2) it could (...) be plausible only from an externalist point of view that is in tension with the view of normativity that motivates conceptualism; 3) the identity conception of truth is incompatible with McDowell's recent version of conceptualism in terms of ‘non-propositional intuitive contents’. (shrink)
There are ways that ethical intuitions might be, and the various possibilities have epistemic ramifications. This paper criticizes some extant accounts of what ethical intuitions are and how they justify, and it offers an alternative account. Roughly, an ethical intuition that p is a kind of seeming state constituted by a consideration whether p, attended by positive phenomenological qualities that count as evidence for p, and so a reason to believe that p. They are distinguished from other (...) kinds of seemings, such as those which are content driven (e.g., the sensory experience that a stick in water seems bent) and those which are competence driven (e.g., the intellectual seeming that XYZ is not water, or that one of DeMorgan’s laws is true). One important conclusion is this: when crafting a positive theory of justification ethical intuitionists have fewer resources than intuitionists in other domains, not because of the subject matter of ethical intuitions, but because of the their structure. A second conclusion is that the seemings featured in substantive ethical intuitions deliver relatively weak justification as compared to other seeming states. (shrink)
Reprinted in Philosophy of Religion: An Anthology, Wadsworth, 2013, 6th edition, eds. Michael Rea and Louis Pojman. In this essay, I argue that the moral skepticism objection to what is badly named "skeptical theism" fails.
From a number of quarters have come attempts to answer some form of skepticism—about knowledge of the external world, freedom of the will, or moral reasons—by showing it to be performatively self-defeating. Examples of this strategy are subject to a number of criticisms, in particular the criticism that they fail to shift the burden of proof from the anti-skeptical position, and so fail to establish the epistemic entitlement they seek. To these approaches I contrast one way of understanding Kant’s (...) core anti-skeptical arguments in the Critique of Pure Reason. Kant’s goal is the more modest one of showing the applicability of the concepts of substance and cause to experience, against those who might call such application incoherent, or a category mistake. I explain why this goal makes Kant’s approach more promising than those of neo-Kantian practitioners of otherwise structurally-similar strategies. (shrink)
This book provides an analysis of the debate surrounding cultural diversity, and attempts to reconcile the seemingly opposing views of "ethical imperialism," the belief that each individual is entitled to fundamental human rights, and cultural relativism, the belief that ethics must be relative to particular cultures and societies. The author examines the role of cultural tradition, often used as a defense against critical ethical judgments. Key issues in health and medicine are explored in the context of cultural diversity: (...) the physician-patient relationship, disclosing a diagnosis of a fatal illness, informed consent, brain death and organ transplantation, rituals surrounding birth and death, female genital mutilation, sex selection of offspring, fertility regulation, and biomedical research involving human subjects. Among the conclusions the author reaches are that ethical universals exist, but must not be confused with ethical absolutes. The existence of ethical universals is compatible with a variety of culturally relative interpretations, and some rights related to medicine and health care should be considered human rights. Illustrative examples are drawn from the author's experiences serving on international ethical review committees and her travels to countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, where she conducted educational workshops and carried out out her own research. (shrink)
It is often suggested that aesthetic and ethical value judgements are similar in such a way that they should be analysed in analogous manners. In this paper, I argue that the two types of judgements share four important features concerning disagreement, motivation, categoricity, and argumentation. This, I maintain, helps to explain why many philosophers have thought that aesthetic and ethical value judgements can be analysed in accordance with the same dispositional scheme which corresponds to the analogy between secondary (...) qualities and values. However, I argue that aesthetic and ethical value judgements differ as regards their fundamental structures. This scheme is mistaken as regards ethical value judgements, but it is able to account for aesthetic value judgements. This implies that aesthetic value judgements are autonomous in relation to ethical value judements and that aestheticians, not moral philosophers, are the true heirs of this renowned analogy. (shrink)
To "look good" and to "be good" have traditionally been considered two very different notions. Indeed, philosophers have seen aesthetic and ethical values as fundamentally separate. Now, at the crossroads of a new wave of aesthetic theory, Marcia Muelder Eaton introduces this groundbreaking work, in which a bold new concept of merit where being good and looking good are integrated into one.
Philosophical theorizing is often, either tacitly or explicitly, guided by intuitions about cases. Theories that accord with our intuitions are generally considered to be prima facie better than those that do not. However, recent empirical work has suggested that philosophically significant intuitions are variable and unstable in a number of ways. This variability of intuitions has led naturalistically inclined philosophers to disparage the practice of relying on intuitions for doing philosophy in general (e.g. Stich & Weinberg 2001) and for doing (...) moral philosophy in particular (Appiah 2008; Doris & Stich 2005; Horowitz 1998; Nadelhoffer & Feltz 2008; Sinnott Armstrong 2008). In this paper, we will draw on naturalistic considerations to offer some solace to philosophers who rely on intuitions. We wouldn’t call this a defense of intuitions, exactly, since we are sympathetic with much of the naturalists’ critique. But we want to introduce into the debate some neglected naturalistic reasons to be optimistic about intuitions, focusing especially on ethical intuitions. (shrink)
In contemporary free will theory, a significant number of philosophers are once again taking seriously the possibility that human beings do not have free will, and are therefore not morally responsible for their actions. Free will theorists commonly assume that giving up the belief that human beings are morally responsible implies giving up all our beliefs about desert. But the consequences of giving up the belief that we are morally responsible are not quite this dramatic. Giving up the belief that (...) we are morally responsible undermines many, and perhaps most, of the desert claims we are pretheoretically inclined to accept. But it does not undermine desert claims based on the sheer fact of personhood. Even in the absence of belief in moral responsibility, personhood-based desert claims require us to respect persons and their rights. So personhood-based desert claims can provide a substantial role for desert in free will skeptics' ethical theories. (shrink)
Throughout the history of philosophy, skepticism has posed one of the central challenges of epistemology. Opponents of skepticism--including externalists, contextualists, foundationalists, and coherentists--have focussed largely on one particular variety of skepticism, often called Cartesian or Academic skepticism, which makes the radical claim that nobody can know anything. However, this version of skepticism is something of a straw man, since virtually no philosopher endorses this radical skeptical claim. The only skeptical view that has been truly held--by (...) Sextus, Montaigne, Hume, Wittgenstein, and, most recently, Robert Fogelin--has been Pyrrohnian skepticism. Pyrrhonian skeptics do not assert Cartesian skepticism, but neither do they deny it. The Pyrrhonian skeptics' doubts run so deep that they suspend belief even about Cartesian skepticism and its denial. Nonetheless, some Pyrrhonians argue that they can still hold "common beliefs of everyday life" and can even claim to know some truths in an everyday way. This edited volume presents previously unpublished articles on this subject by a strikingly impressive group of philosophers, who engage with both historical and contemporary versions of Pyrrhonian skepticism. Among them are Gisela Striker, Janet Broughton, Don Garrett, Ken Winkler, Hans Sluga, Ernest Sosa, Michael Williams, Barry Stroud, Robert Fogelin, and Roy Sorensen. This volume is thematically unified and will interest a broad spectrum of scholars in epistemology and the history of philosophy. (shrink)
Most books about ethics focus either on the origins of ethics, or on the application of ethical thinking to a single form of therapy. This book sets out to span a range of very different forms of therapy and explores the similarities and the differences between the ethical thinking of the practitioners concerned. By looking at ethical issues in different therapeutic settings the reader is challenged to reconsider the working assumptions which underpin familiar therapeutic practice. Readers of (...) Forms of Ethical Thinking in Therapeutic Practice are offered the unique opportunity to gain insights into the ethical thinking of experienced practitioners offering strikingly different services to their clients and working in contrasting contexts. Essential reading for all practitioners in counselling and the therapies, students, trainers, supervisors and providers of therapeutic services. (shrink)
People -- Who was Huet? -- The censura : why and when? -- The birth of skepticism -- Malebranche's surprising silence -- The downfall of cartesianism -- Kinds -- Huet a cartesian? -- Descartes and skepticism : the standard interpretation -- Descartes and skepticism : the texts -- Thoughts -- The cogito : an inference? -- The transparency of mind -- The cogito as pragmatic tautology -- Doubts -- The reality of doubt -- The generation of doubt (...) -- The response to doubt -- Rules -- The criterion of truth -- The trump argument -- Circles -- The simple circularity of the meditations -- The inner circle(s) -- Gods -- Gassendist influences -- The objections of objections -- The rejection of intentionality -- Virtues -- Descartes's voice -- Betting the family farm -- The propagation of light -- The heart-beat -- The moving earth -- Faith and reason -- Descartes as methodological academic skeptic. (shrink)
In The Ethical Primate, renowned philosopher Mary Midgley tackles important questions about human freedom and morality. Scientists and philosophers have found it difficult to understand how each human being can be both a living part of the natural world and, at the same time, a genuinely free agent. Midgley explores their responses to this seeming paradox and argues that our evolutionary origin, properly understood, explains why human freedom and morality have come about.
Richard Hare described the "ethical fanatic" as an agent who appeared to be able to rationally universalize morally horrendous values by "fanatically" accepting the consequences of those values even if their universalization harmed the original agent. This challenges the project of basing ethics on universalization tests, as advocated by Hare, Immanuel Kant, and others. Hare later argued that fanatics are irrational by appealing to a "principle of prudence," but this violates his meta-principle of not basing fundamental ethical principles (...) upon intuitions which are not themselves shown to be required by reason. This failure is corrected by using the concept of "pragmatic implication" to show that any agent's reliance upon any ethical principle commits her to a higher-ordered principle which justifies commitment to the original principle. This threatens an infinite regress, which can only be closed by a unique meta-principle. It is shown that all possible alternatives to this principle fail to actually end the regress, and all strategies of ignoring the regress also entail practical inconsistency. Hence, ethical universalization tests are not empty; they support unique ethical principles whose content does not depend upon the particular values of actual agents. (shrink)
The authors developed this textbook in response to an increasing interest in ethics, and a growing number of courses on this topic that are now being offered in educational leadership programs. It is designed to fill a gap in instructional materials for teaching the ethics component of the knowledge base that has been established for the profession. The text has several purposes: First, it demonstrates the application of different ethical paradigms (the ethics of justice, care, critique, and the profession) (...) through discussion and analysis of real-life moral dilemmas that educational leaders face in their schools and communities. Second, it addresses some of the practical, pedagogical, and curricular issues related to the teaching of ethics for educational leaders. Third, it emphasizes the importance of ethics instruction from a variety of theoretical approaches. Finally, it provides a process that instructors might follow to develop their own ethics unit or course. * Part I provides an overview of why ethics is so important, especially for today's educational leaders, and describes a multiparadigm approach essential to practitioners as they grapple with ethical dilemmas. * Part II deals with the dilemmas themselves. Ethical dilemmas written by the authors' graduate students bring readers face-to-face with the kinds of dilemmas faced by practicing administrators in urban, suburban, and rural settings in an era full of complexities and contradictions. * Part III focuses on pedagogy and provides teaching notes for the instructor. The authors discuss the importance of self-reflection on the part of both instructors and students, and model how they thought through their own personal and professional ethical codes as well as reflected upon the critical incidents in their lives that shaped their teaching and frequently determined what they privileged in class. (shrink)
Creating an ethical culture -- Winning through people -- Winning with customers -- Winning for the community -- Action steps and strategies -- Summary -- Appendix A: An ETHICS evaluation tool: ethics assessment and goal-setting -- Appendix B: Debate and guidance: the literature and best practices.
These lectures by one of the most influential and original philosophers of the twentieth century constitute a sustained argument for the philosophical basis of romanticism, particularly in its American rendering. Through his examination of such authors as Emerson, Thoreau, Poe, Wordsworth, and Coleridge, Stanley Cavell shows that romanticism and American transcendentalism represent a serious philosophical response to the challenge of skepticism that underlies the writings of Wittgenstein and Austin on ordinary language.
The goal of this paper is methodological. It offers a comprehensive mapping of the theoretical positions on the ethical criticism of art, correcting omissions and inadequacies in the conceptual framework adopted in the current debate. Three principles are recommended as general guidelines: ethical amenability, basic value pluralism, and relativity to ethical dimension. Hence a taxonomy distinguishing between different versions of autonomism, moralism, and immoralism is established, by reference to criteria that are different from what emerging in the (...) current literature. The mapping is then proved capable of (1) locating the various theories that have been proposed so far and clarifying such theories’ real commitments, (2) having the correct relationship with actual art making and art criticism practices, and (3) showing the real weight of the alleged counter-example to a moralist position of a work that succeeds artistically because of its immorality. (shrink)
In these essays, John Skorupski develops a distinctive and systematic moral philosophy. He examines the central ethical concepts of reasons, the good, and morality, and applies the results to issues of culture and politics. Ethical Explorations firmly connects liberal politics to its ethical ideal, and links that ideal to modern morality and modern ideas of the good.
Mental health professionals face many complex questions in the course of their work with clients and patients. Among the most difficult are dilemmas that involve ethical issues. This book presents a forthright exploration of these dilemmas and the ethical considerations they raise. Drawing on extensive interviews, the author identifies common ethical problems that practitioners encounter. What happens, for example, when personal interests intrude into therapy? How can the therapist make an accurate assessment of his or her appropriateness (...) as a care provider for a particular patient? What about confidentiality? How are problematic financial arrangements best addressed? The author goes on to show how these dilemmas may be intensified by the unique assumptions of different therapeutic orientations--individual, group, family, marital, and organizational--and how professionals can learn from such experiences to better understand and apply their particular approach. This analysis--and the words of the therapists themselves--provide both a guide to practice and a unique store of experience for the growing number of researchers and students concerned with ethical problems in psychotherapy. (shrink)
The Enron debacle, the demise of Arthur Andersen, questionable practices at Tyco, Qwest, WorldCom, and a seemingly endless list of others have pushed public regard for business and business leaders to new lows. The need for smart leaders with vision and integrity has never been greater. Things need to change-- and it will not be easy. We can take a first step toward producing better business leaders by changing some of our own ideas about what it means to "win." Noel (...) M. Tichy and Andrew R. McGill have brought together a stellar group of contributors from a variety of perspectives-- including General Electric CEO Jeffrey Immelt, former Secretary of State James A. Baker III, and renowned management gurus Robert Quinn and C. K. Prahalad, among others-- to offer insights that will help build better leaders, communities, and organizations. They show how to present a "Teachable Point of View" about business ethics that will help all leaders within an organization: Internalize core values Build a values-based culture across the organization Become engaged to teach the same values lessons to their staff Take action and raise the ethical bar Successful business leaders must be able to articulate their own unique Teachable Point of View on business ethics and drive it through their organization to ensure that everyone knows the ethical line and is neither shy nor silent if others risk crossing it. (shrink)
It may be possible to scientifically test philosophical skepticism; at least this is what I shall maintain. The argument develops the naturalistic insight that there may be no particular reason to suppose that nature has selected Homo sapiens’ epistemic capacities such that we are ideally suited to forming a true theory of everything, or indeed, a true theory of much of anything. Just as chimpanzees are cognitively limited - there are many concepts, ideas, and theories beyond their grasp - (...) so too might our conception of the universe seem limited from the point of view of some creature more “evolved” than humans. On the other hand, some physicists (et al.) have argued that humans are on the verge of discovering a “final theory of everything”. Such epistemic “optimism” seems to directly contradict the idea that we might be cognitively limited. To adjudicate between these views I shall suggest the outlines of several “crucial tests” that involve attempting to create creatures who stand to us, with respect to intelligence and wisdom, as we do to apes. A positive result from any of these experiments will indicate that the skeptical view is correct, while failure to create “higher” intelligences lends support to the epistemic optimists’ position. 2. (shrink)
Stanley Cavell's work is distinctive not only in its importance to philosophy but also for its remarkable interdisciplinary range. Cavell is read avidly by students of film, photography, painting, and music, but especially by students of literature, for whom Cavell offers major readings of Thoreau, Emerson, Shakespeare, and others. In this first book-length study of Cavell's writings, Michael Fischer examines Cavell's relevance to the controversies surrounding poststructuralist literary theory, particularly works by Jacques Derrida, J. Hillis Miller, Paul de Man, and (...) Stanley Fish. Throughout his study, Fischer focuses on skepticism, a central concern of Cavell's multifaceted work. Cavell, following J. L. Austin and Wittgenstein, does not refute the radical epistemological questioning of Descartes, Hume, and others, but rather characterizes skepticism as a significant human possibility or temptation. As presented by Fischer, Cavell's accounts of both external-world and other-minds skepticism share significant affinities with deconstruction, a connection overlooked by contemporary literary theorists. Fischer follows Cavell's lead in examining how different genres address the problems raised by skepticism and goes on to show how Cavell draws on American and English romanticism in fashioning a response to it. He concludes by analyzing Cavell's remarks about current critical theory, focusing on Cavell's uneasiness with some of the conclusions reached by its practitioners. Fischer shows that Cavell's insights, grounded in powerful analyses of Descartes, Hume, and Wittgenstein, permit a fresh view of Derrida, Miller, de Man, and Fish. The result is not only a revealing characterization of deconstruction but a much-needed and insightful introduction to Cavell's rich but difficult oeuvre. (shrink)
Every day nurses are required to make ethical decisions in the course of caring for their patients. Ethics in Nursing Practice provides the background necessary to understand ethical decision making and its implications for patient care. The authors focus on the individual nurse’s responsibilities, as well as considering the wider issues affecting patients, colleagues and society as a whole. This third edition is fully updated, and takes into account recent changes in ICN position statements, WHO documents, as well (...) as addressing current issues in healthcare, such as providing for the health and care needs of refugees and asylum seekers, bioethics and the enforcement of nursing codes. (shrink)
Contemporary ethical theory ought to take both the biological and cultural constitution of human subjects into account. But the coupling of these constraints raises questions about the scope of each. In this paper I defend the view that, rather than predetermining human moral sensibility, or founding a universal ethic on that basis, the biological constitution of human beings actually prefigures their wide variability across cultures and argues for the open-endedness of questions of meaning and value. I defend this conception (...) against Owen Flanagan’s neo-Darwinian “Eudaimonics” as well as against various forms of ethical a priorism and ethicalskepticism, making critical use of Charles Taylor’s hermeneutic conception of human moral valuation. (shrink)
Recently, new life has been breathed into the ancient philosophical topic of skepticism. The subject of some of the best and most provocative work in contemporary philosophy, skepticism has been addressed not only by top epistemologists but also by several of the world's finest philosophers who are most known for their work in other areas of the discipline. Skepticism: A Contemporary Reader brings together the most important recent contributions to the discussion of skepticism. Covering major approaches (...) to the skeptical problem, it features essays by Anthony Brueckner, Keith DeRose, Fred Dretske, Graeme Forbes, Christopher Hill, David Lewis, Thomas Nagel, Robert Nozick, Hilary Putnam, Ernest Sosa, Gail Stine, Barry Stroud, Peter Unger, and Ted Warfield. The book opens with a thorough introduction that outlines the skeptical problem, explains the dominant responses to skepticism, and discusses the strengths, weaknesses, and unresolved issues of each response, providing undergraduate students and nonphilosophers with the background and context necessary to understand the essays. Skepticism: A Contemporary Reader serves as an ideal text for courses in epistemology and skepticism and will also appeal to professional philosophers and interested general readers. (shrink)
Machine generated contents note: CHAPTER 1. Cultural and Ethical Relativism -- I. Cultural Relativism -- II. Approval Theories -- III. Ethical Relativism -- IV. Institutionalism and Ethical Relationism -- CHAPTER 2. Positivism, Postmodernism and Ethical -- Relativism -- I. Metaethical Theories -- II. Positivism and Ethics -- III. Postmoder Cognitive Relativism -- IV Ethical Relativism -- CHAPTER 3. Cultural-Ethical Relativism: A Critique -- I. The Limited Validity of Cultural Relativism -- II. Approbation Theories -- (...) III. 'Is' and 'Ought' Controversy -- IV Some Further Arguments Concerning Ethical -- Relativism -- CHAPTER 4. Relativism: Positivist and Postmodern: -- A Critique -- I. Recapitulation -- II. Non-cognitivist Theories -- III. Postmodern Cognitive Relativism -- IV. Indeterminacy of Translation, Inscrutability of -- Reference, Conceptual Schemes, and -- Incommensurability -- V Some Further Comments --CHAPTER 5. Anti-Relativist Trends: Realism and -- Universali -- I. Introductory Remarks -- II. Realism: Metaphysical and Epistemological -- m. Realism and Ethical Discourse -- IV Ethical Universalism -- V Are Realism and Universalism Complementary? -- CHAPTER 6. The Moral Point of View -- I. Overridingness -- II. Objectivity and Universality -- II. Impartiality and Reversibility -- IV Equality and Justice -- V Towards Universal Morality -- CHAPTER 7. Self and Others -- I. Early Views -- II. Existentialist View -- III. Liberals and Communitarians -- IV. Kantian Perspective -- V Indian Perspective -- CHAPTER 8. A Rational Approach to Universal -- Morality -- I. Objectivity and Validity -- II. A Rational Approach -- II. Reason and Dialogue -- IV. Concluding Note. (shrink)
Ethical mysticism, by S. Coit.--The ethical import of history, by D. S. Muzzey.--The tragic and heroic in life, by W. M. Salter.--Distinctive features of the ethical movement, by A. W. Martin.--Ethical experience as the basis of religious education, by H. Neumann.--"All men are created equal," by G. E. O'Dell.--How far is art an aid to religion? by P. Chubb.--Evolution and the uniqueness of man, by H. J. Bridges.--The spiritual outlook on life, by H. J. Golding.--The ethics (...) of Abu'l Ala al Ma'arri, by N. Schmidt.--Life's unused moral force, by H. Snell.--Is the ideal real? by G. A. Smith.--Some ethical tendencies in the professions, by R. D. Kohn.--On the art of living, by W. Boerner.--The relation of the ethical ideal to social reform, by J. L. Elliott.--Concerning tolerance, by R. F. Dewey.--Ethical culture in Germany after the war, by R. Penzig.--A confession of faith, by S. B. Weston.--"Hearing the witnesses," by J. Gutmann. (shrink)
Ideal for students with little or no background in philosophy, Ethical Choices: An Introduction to Moral Philosophy with Cases provides a concise, balanced, and highly accessible introduction to ethics. Featuring an especially lucid and engaging writing style, the text surveys a wide range of ethical theories and perspectives including consequentialist ethics, deontological ethics, natural and virtue ethics, the ethics of care, and ethics and religion. Each chapter of Ethical Choices also includes compelling case studies that are carefully (...) matched with the theoretical material. Many of these cases address issues that students can relate directly to their own lives: the drinking age, student credit card debt, zero tolerance policies, grade inflation, and video games. Other cases discuss current topics like living wills, obesity, human trafficking, torture "lite," universal health care, and just-war theory. The cases provide students with practice in addressing real-life moral choices, as well as opportunities to evaluate the usefulness and applicability of each ethical theory. Every case study concludes with a set of Thought Questions to guide students as they reflect upon the issues raised by that case. Ethical Choices is enhanced by several pedagogical features. These include summaries at the end of each section, lists of key terms, questions For Reflection and Discussion at the end of each chapter, Guidelines for a Case Study Analysis, and suggestions For Further Reading that include Internet sources. Starred sections indicate more advanced material that may be included at the instructor's discretion. A companion website at www.oup.com/us/burnor contains additional resources for both students and instructors: chapter outlines, flashcards of key terms, sets of Helpful Hints to further aid students in mastering the material, and an additional chapter on our Moral Obligations Towards the Future. (shrink)
Designed to immediately engage students and other readers in philosophical reflection, the new edition of Ethical Argument: Critical Thinking in Ethics bridges the gap between ethical theory and practice. This brief introduction combines a discussion of ethical theory with fundamental elements of critical thinking--including informal fallacies and the basics of logic--and uses case studies and practical applications to illustrate concepts. Author Hugh Mercer Curtler presents a carefully formulated critique of ethical relativism, encouraging students to reason along (...) with him and to question his argument at every point. This approach enables students to think systematically about ethical issues and to acquire basic skills in argumentation at the same time. They will learn how to bring principles to bear on ethical conflict, how to weigh pros and cons, how to recognize good ethical reasons, and how to distinguish sound argumentation from rationalization. The second edition of Ethical Argument: Critical Thinking in Ethics includes new exercises and examples, summary boxes, cartoons, and sample dialogues that demonstrate how to effectively debate ethical positions. It features more than forty case studies on ethical issues that are interesting and relevant to students. An ideal core text for courses in introductory ethics, this concise volume can be used along with additional primary sources, case studies, or newspaper articles and novels. It is also a helpful supplementary text for courses in applied ethics--including professional, business, and medical ethics--and in critical thinking. (shrink)
All investigators funded by the National Institutes of Health are now required to receive training about the ethics of clinical research. Based on a course taught by the editors at NIH, Ethical and Regulatory Aspects of Clinical Research is the first book designed to help investigators meet this new requirement. The book begins with the history of human subjects research and guidelines instituted since World War II. It then covers various stages and components of the clinical trial process: designing (...) the trial, recruiting participants, ensuring informed consent, studying special populations, and conducting international research. Concluding chapters address conflicts of interest, scientific misconduct, and challenges to the IRB system. The appendix provides sample informed consent forms. This book will be used in undergraduate courses on research ethics and in schools of medicine and public health by students who are or will be carrying out clinical research. Professionals in need of such training and bioethicists also will be interested. (shrink)
In 1985, philosopher Samuel Gorovitz spent seven weeks at Boston's Beth Israel, one of the nation's premier teaching hospitals, where he was given free run as "Authorized Snoop and Irritant-at-Large." In Drawing the Line, he provides an intense, disturbing, and insightful account of his observations during those seven weeks. Gorovitz guides us through an operating room and intensive care units, and takes us to meetings where surgeons discuss the mishaps of the preceding week, where internists map out their approaches to (...) troublesome cases, where the administration discusses competition in the health care market. He follows as residents walk the ragged edge of physical exhaustion, as experienced physicians wrestle with the uncertainties of their demanding profession, as nurses struggle to care for perpetually declining patients. Most important, he examines the ethical questions that permeate their lives--deeply troubling questions such as who should be making life and death decisions--and how should they be made? How should scarce medical resources be allocated? What rules should govern the use of fetal tissue in research and treatment? Where should we draw the line, and how? When Samuel Gorovitz published Doctors' Dilemmas, a previous look at medical ethics, it was hailed by Norman Cousins as "stimulating and valuable...the product of a beautifully formed (and informed) mind." Studs Terkel called it "quite remarkable...a very exciting book indeed." In Drawing the Line, Gorovitz offers an unusual look at contemporary health care, combining a moving, hard-hitting glimpse of daily reality at a major hospital with the thoughtful, provocative reflections of a highly respected philosopher. (shrink)
This book defends a form of ethical intuitionism, according to which (i) there are objective moral truths; (ii) we know some of these truths through a kind of immediate, intellectual awareness, or "intuition"; and (iii) our knowledge of moral truths gives us reasons for action independent of our desires. The author rebuts all the major objections to this theory and shows that the alternative theories about the nature of ethics all face grave difficulties.
Skirting the Ethical offers highly original readings of six works, each noted for its politico-ethical stance. The first four (Sophocles' Antigone , Plato's Symposium and Republic and Hamann's "Aesthetica in nuce") have a recognized and honored place in the canon. The last two, Sebald's The Emigrants and Jane Campion's film The Piano , are exemplary for our contemporary scene. Nevertheless, the straightforward assumptions about justice, divine and state power, the good, and identity politics that every reader or viewer (...) inevitably comes upon are disrupted when one takes into account the role of language: both the way in which language is talked about and the way in which it performs. What emerges is a non-prescriptive ethics of another order that offers a resistance to power and simplistic conceptualizations of truth, an emancipation from the "must-be" that implies an ever-to-be-renewed renegotiation—a responsability that has much to do with the act of critique or interpretation. (shrink)
Breaking down complex philosophical issues into a step-by-step self-help guide, the founder of the Institute for Global Ethics shows us how to grapple with everyday issues and problems: Should I take my family on a much-needed vacation or save money for my children's education? Should we protect the endangered owl or maintain jobs for loggers? This is a unique, anecdote-rich, and articulate program that teaches us to think for ourselves rather than supplying us with easy, definitive answers. Offering concrete guidelines (...) and principles, Kidder enables us to resolve ethical dilemmas and to make the tough choice between what are usually two "right" values. (shrink)
Herodotus. Custom is king.--Engels, F. Ethics and law: eternal truths.--Sumner, W. G. Folkways.--Ross, W. D. The meaning of right.--Duncker, K. Ethical relativity?--Herskovits, M. J. Cultural relativism and cultural values.--Kluckhohn, C. Ethical relativity: sic et non.--Taylor, P. W. Social science and ethical relativism.--Ladd, J. The issue of relativism.--Redfield, R. The universally human and the culturally variable.--Bibliography (p. 145-146).
Managing integrity -- Identifying ethical and legal issues in the workplace -- Understanding decision making in the workplace -- Managing organizational culture for integrity -- Increasing legal pressure for ethical compliance -- Developing an effective organizational integrity program -- Implementing ethics and legal compliance training -- Managing integrity in a global economy -- Creating the good citizen organization -- Benefiting from best practices.
Ethical leadership in a global world, and a roadmap to the book -- Corporate psychopaths -- CEOs and corporate social performance -- CEOs and financial misreporting -- Life at the sharp end -- Inclusive leadership in Nicaragua and the DRC -- A new ideal leadership profile for Romania -- Virtue-based leadership in the UK and Nigeria -- Chinese folk wisdom : leading with traditional values -- Leading ethically : what helps and what hinders -- Beyond compliance -- A moral (...) compass for the global leadership labyrinth -- Spiritually anchored leadership -- Global ethical leadership and the future. (shrink)
Carrier in a recent paper urges for consideration an argument for skepticism which is based on premises one of which in turn is to be defended by yet another principle (the "Janus Principle" of the text). We feel that the latter principle and the way Carrier wants to use it to defend his skeptical argument will find adherents, but we show that this argument rests on an interesting equivocation quite beyond repair even if we accept the "Janus Principle".
Philips defends a middle ground between the view that there is a set of standards binding on rational beings as such (universalism) and the view that differences in morals reduce ultimately to matters of taste (skepticism). He begins with a sustained critique of universalist moral theories and some familiar approaches to concrete moral questions that presuppose them (most appeals to intuitions, respect for person's moralities, and versions of contractarianism and wide reflective equilibrium). He goes on to criticize major recent (...) attempts to develop nonuniversalist alternatives to skepticism, arguing that they rely on excessively abstract and philosophically indefensible preference satisfaction theories of the good. According to Philips's positive alternative, moral standards are justified to the extent that they support reasonably valued ways of life. He devotes considerable attention to clarifying this idea and draws conclusions from it about the role and limits of reason in ethics. Philips's theory provides us with a theoretical basis for dealing with actual moral controversies and for approaching questions of applied and professional ethics in a systematic way. (shrink)
The issue of relativism has recently become a vital concern in sociology and politics, along with globalization. This book studies ethical relativism in its most profound and recent forms, and argues that a non-relativist account of morality is capable of validating our moral experiences without undesirable implications. Ethical Relativism brings a fresh-perspective to the on-going debate on post-modernism and relativism, and should be of interest to all who study philosophy, theology, and cultural studies, and those interested in spirituality.
This book examines the issue of philosophical skepticism in the light of its relevance for the critique of modernity associated with the Frankfurt School. It situates the problem of skepticism in the context of the history of philosophy and explores its significance for the modern crisis of reason, as manifested in post-Kantian philosophy, which presaged the critical turn toward social theory.
This book offers an in-depth analysis of the wide range of issues surrounding "passive euthanasia" and "allow-to-die" decisions. The author develops a comprehensive conceptual model that is highly useful for assessing and dealing with real-life situations. He presents an informative historical overview, an evaluation of the clinical settings in which treatment abatement takes place, and an insightful discussion of relevant legal aspects. The result is a clearly articulated ethical analysis that is medically realistic, philosophically sound, and legally viable.
The authors propose a model for business ethics which arises directly from business practice. This model is based on a behavioral definition of the economic theory of profit maximization and situates business ethics within opportunity costs. Within that context, they argue that good business and good ethics are synonymous, that ethics is at the heart and center of business, that profits and ethics are intrinsically related.
Background: To evaluate the effectiveness of a multifaceted intervention in improving emergency department (ED) patient privacy and satisfaction in the crowded ED setting. Methods: A pre- and post-intervention study was conducted. A multifaceted intervention was implemented in a university-affiliated hospital ED. The intervention developed strategies to improve ED patient privacy and satisfaction, including redesigning the ED environment, process management, access control, and staff education and training, and encouraging ethics consultation. The effectiveness of the intervention was evaluated using patient surveys. Eligibility (...) data were collected after the intervention and compared to data collected before the intervention. Differences in patient satisfaction and patient perception of privacy were adjusted for predefined covariates using multivariable ordinal logistic regression. Results: Structured questionnaires were collected with 313 ED patients before the intervention and 341 ED patients after the intervention. There were no important covariate differences, except for treatment area, between the two groups. Significant improvements were observed in patient perception of "personal information overheard by others", being "seen by irrelevant persons", having "unintentionally heard inappropriate conversations from healthcare providers", and experiencing "providers' respect for my privacy". There was significant improvement in patient overall perception of privacy and satisfaction. There were statistically significant correlations between the intervention and patient overall perception of privacy and satisfaction on multivariable analysis. Conclusions: Significant improvements were achieved with an intervention. Patients perceived significantly more privacy and satisfaction in ED care after the intervention. We believe that these improvements were the result of major philosophical, administrative, and operational changes aimed at respecting both patient privacy and satisfaction. (shrink)
Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation is a widely accepted practice in the United Kingdom (UK). The relatively liberal UK law permits donation both within families and from strangers, and even allows the creation of “saviour siblings” who are brought into being with the specific intent of having them donate stem cells to save other members of their family. This chapter describes the regulation of HSCT in the UK and highlights some ethical issues related to discrimination against some categories of potential (...) donors, the accuracy of the information provided to potential donors, and the controversy concerning saviour siblings. (shrink)
Our goal in this paper is to provide enough of an account of the origins of cognitive ethology and the controversy surrounding it to help ethicists to gauge for themselves how to balance skepticism and credulity about animal minds when communicating with scientists. We believe that ethicists’ arguments would benefit from better understanding of the historical roots of ongoing controversies. It is not appropriate to treat some widely reported results in animal cognition as if their interpretations are a matter (...) of scientific consensus. It is especially important to understand why loose references to “cognitive ethology” by philosophers can signal ignorance of the field to scientists who are more deeply immersed in the relevant literature. Understanding the variety of approaches to cognitive phenomena in animals is essential if such capacities are to form the foundation of scientifically-informed ethical reasoning about animals. (shrink)
For elite athletes seeking a winning advantage, manipulation of their own genetic code has become a realistic possibility. In Genetic Technology and Sport, experts from sports science, genetics, philosophy, ethics, and international sports administration describe the potential applications of the new technology and debate the questions surrounding its use.
Since its inception as an international requirement to protect patients and healthy volunteers taking part in medical research, informed consent has become the primary consideration in research ethics. Despite the ubiquity of consent, however, scholars have begun to question its adequacy for contemporary biomedical research. This book explores this issue, reviewing the application of consent to genetic research, clinical trials, and research involving vulnerable populations. For example, in genetic research, information obtained from an autonomous research participant may have significant bearing (...) on the interests of family members who have not consented to the study. This casts doubt on the adequacy of consent for such studies. This book also questions the assumptions that informed consent is essential and that it satisfactorily protects the principle of individual autonomy. It reviews recent empirical studies that challenge the possibility of truly informed consent and highlights the extent to which consent is governed by social norms and expectations. It also investigates how consent might be of secondary importance in some circumstances, for example when a research project appears to protect a public or community interest. (shrink)