Deontological restrictions and the self/other asymmetry

Noûs 42 (4):642-672 (2008)
This paper offers a partial justification of so-called "deontological restrictions." Specifically it defends the "self/other asymmetry," that we are morally obligated to treat our own agency, and thus its results, as specially important. The argument rests on a picture of moral obligation of a broadly Kantian sort. In particular, it rests on the basic normative assumption that our fundamental obligations are determined by the principles which a rational being as such would follow. These include principles which it is not essential for rational beings to accept, but acceptance of which we could non-arbitrarily attribute to them simply in their capacity as rational. Among these principles is the asymmetry mentioned above.
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DOI 10.1111/j.1468-0068.2008.00695.x
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Thomas Scanlon (1998). What We Owe to Each Other. Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.

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