Toward an african moral theory

Journal of Political Philosophy 15 (3):321–341 (2007)
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Abstract

In this article I articulate and defend an African moral theory, i.e., a basic and general principle grounding all particular duties that is informed by sub-Saharan values commonly associated with talk of "ubuntu" and cognate terms that signify personhood or humanness. The favoured interpretation of ubuntu (as of 2007) is the principle that an action is right insofar as it respects harmonious relationships, ones in which people identify with, and exhibit solidarity toward, one another. I maintain that this is the most defensible moral theory with an African pedigree at the time, and that it should be developed further with an eye to rivalling dominant Western theories such as utilitarianism and Kantianism. (NB: a mildly revised version, avoiding some typos and phrases that invite misinterpretation, appeared as a chapter in Isaac Ukpokolo, ed., _Themes, Issues and Problems in African Philosophy_ London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017, pp. 97-119.)

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Thaddeus Metz
University of Pretoria

References found in this work

Bioethics: An african perspective.Godfrey B. Tangwa - 1996 - Bioethics 10 (3):183–200.
Bioethics: An African Perspective.Godfrey B. Tangwa - 1996 - Bioethics 10 (3):183-200.
Egoism and eudaimonia-maximization in the Nicomachean ethics.Erik Wielenberg - 2004 - Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy 26:277-95.
Human Rights in the African Context.Francis M. Deng - 2005 - In Kwasi Wiredu (ed.), A Companion to African Philosophy. Oxford, UK: Blackwell. pp. 499–508.

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