Does character matter? Guardian values in an age of commerce

Theoria 54 (113):53-75 (2007)

Patrick Giddy
University of KwaZulu-Natal
Standards of excellence in the sphere of work are often taken to be at odds with our ethical obligations in general. In an age of commerce little attention is paid to how the manner in which things are done impacts on the agent's character. Jane Jacobs' phenomenology of our moral intuitions about the public world of work reveal two frameworks, the 'commercial moral syndrome' stressing fairness, and the 'guardian moral syndrome' emphasizing loyalty. In the latter set of values we have a way of countering the bias of contemporary culture. This is best understood as a modified Aristotelian approach. The example of adversarial advocacy in the legal profession is taken as an illustration
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DOI 10.3167/th.2007.5411304
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