Dismemberment, divorce and hostile takeovers: A comment on corporate moral personhood [Book Review]

Journal of Business Ethics 7 (8):639 - 643 (1988)


We can explain our intuitions about corporate takeover cases by appeal to Peter French's picture of the corporation as a moral person. He argues that corporations are persons in much the same sense as you and I, and are entitled to the same rights as humans. On this analysis, takeovers are murders, attempted murders, attempts to enslave, etc. I want to explore the consequences of this view for corporate takeovers. I shall argue that, though French can explain why our moral intuitions seem to arise in response to some concern about the corporations themselves, his analysis commits us to the wrong intuitions in some cases. I shall then offer an account of these intuitions which focuses on the character of corporations.

Download options


    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 72,694

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library


Added to PP

21 (#539,793)

6 months
3 (#198,777)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Rita Manning
San Jose State University

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work

Corporate Moral Agency: Review and Implications. [REVIEW]Geoff Moore - 1999 - Journal of Business Ethics 21 (4):329 - 343.
Corporations, Rights, and Lobbying.Quentin Gee - 2016 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 19 (2):397-408.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

The Ethics of Greenmail.R. Edward Freeman, Daniel R. Gilbert & Carol Jacobson - 1987 - Journal of Business Ethics 6 (3):165 - 178.
Corporate Responsibility and Corporate Personhood.Rita C. Manning - 1984 - Journal of Business Ethics 3 (1):77 - 84.
Corporations, Minors, and Other Innocents? A Reply to R. E. Ewin.P. Eddy Wilson - 1994 - Journal of Business Ethics 13 (10):761 - 774.
Do Corporations Have Moral Rights?David T. Ozar - 1985 - Journal of Business Ethics 4 (4):277 - 281.
A Political Account of Corporate Moral Responsibility.Jeffery Smith - 2011 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 14 (2):223 - 246.