Stephen Darwall
Yale University
A central theme of Samuel Scheffler’s impressive Human Morality is that “a considered view of the relation between morality and the individual” requires distinguishing frequently confused issues concerning morality’s content, scope, authority, and deliberative role, and appreciating interrelations among these. He suggests a nice example of the latter. Some are inclined to believe morality lacks the overriding authority others claim it to have because they assume that morality’s content is stringent. They may think, for instance, that morality gives no weight to the agent’s interests and concerns but argue that, since it would be irrational so to weight one’s concerns and interests in rational deliberation, moral requirements lack overriding reason-giving force. But this assumes without defense a conception of morality that is controversial. If morality is not stringent but moderate, agents’ interests and concerns will be relevant as such to determining their moral obligations, and it will be less clear that the best reasons can ever dictate violating them.
Keywords Analytic Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy  Philosophy of Mind
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ISBN(s) 0031-8205
DOI ppr199555483
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