Contractarianism and the assumption of mutual unconcern

Philosophical Studies 56 (2):187 - 192 (1989)
A contractarian moral theory states that an action (practice, social structure, etc.) is morally permissible if and only if it (or rules to which if conforms) would be agreed to by the members of society under certain circumstances. What people will agree to depends on what their desires are like. Most contractarian theories - for example those of Rawls (1971) and Gauthier (1986) - specify that parties to the agreement are mutually unconcerned (take no interest in each other's interests). Contractarian theorists, do not, of course, believe that this is true of real people, but they insist (with Kant) that the basic moral constraints on conduct (if there are any) apply independently of whether individuals care about each other. I shall here argue against the appropriateness of the assumption of mutual unconcern for contractarian theories, such as Gauthier's, that are supposed to ground morality solely in rationality.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/BF00355942
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Download options
Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 29,174
Through your library
References found in this work BETA
Morals by Agreement.David P. Gauthier - 1986 - Oxford University Press.
A Theory of Justice.John Rawls - 2009 - In Steven M. Cahn (ed.), Philosophy and Rhetoric. Oxford University Press. pp. 133-135.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Defending Non-Tuisms.Susan Dimock - 1999 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 29 (2):251 - 273.
The Morality of Economic Behaviour.Vangelis Chiotis - 2015 - Journal of Global Ethics 11 (2):188-204.
Bargaining and Agreement in Gauthier's Moral Contractarianism.Edwin Etieyibo - 2013 - South African Journal of Philosophy 32 (3):221-233.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Added to PP index

Total downloads
34 ( #153,835 of 2,180,241 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #304,931 of 2,180,241 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature

There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums