The concept of human dignity and the relationship between dignity and human rights have been important subjects in contemporary international academia. This article first analyzes the different understandings of the concept of dignity, which has left great influences in history (including the “theory of attribution-dignity”, the “theory of autonomy-dignity” or the “theory of moral completeness/achievement-dignity”, and the “theory of end-in-itself-dignity”); it then exposes the obvious defects of these modes of understanding; finally, it tries to define dignity as a moral right (...) to be free from insult. Meanwhile, the relationship between human dignity and human rights is clarified as a result of this research: Rather than being the foundation of human rights, human dignity is one of human rights. The idea of dignity nevertheless has a particular status in ethics in that it embodies a kind of core moral concern, representing a basic demand rooted in the human self or individuality, and hence representing an important aspect of human rights. We may anticipate that sooner or later, the idea of human dignity will become, together with other human rights, the only intangible cultural heritage of human society. (shrink)
The revival of Aristotelian virtue ethics since the 1980s does not signify that it goes back to its original form; rather, it is generally manifested in three different variations: The first is a variation of what is known as communitarianism, the second is universalism, and the third is phronesis. On the social level of morality, the serious attempt of modern virtue ethics towards improving the moral spirit of society is laudable. However, its method and reasoning deviates greatly from the demands (...) of modern societyâs integration of its operating rules and regulations, and concept of values; hence all of its attempts can hardly escape the fate of becoming just a fantasy. Yet, on the level of dealing with ethic conflicts and moral paradox, modern virtue ethicsâvia interpreting the theory of phronesis by Aristotleâproposes the valuable thought of a balanced morality that principlism should concern itself with and nourish itself from. (shrink)
Barry L. Gan's Violence and Nonviolence: An Introduction introduces readers to myths about the violence taken for granted in our daily lives, and advocates for more principled, nonviolent action on moral, ethical and philosophical grounds.
This paper proposes that a corporation’s vulnerability to public scrutiny drives its corporate giving. The hypothesis that companies donate for strategic motives is tested against the alternative that they do so for altruistic reasons. Court cases and news articles were selected as proxies for public scrutiny. Macroeconomic variables were used to gauge the level of public charitable need and test for altruism. Through examining the philanthropic behavior of 40 Fortune 500 companies over 7 years, this paper finds that companies are (...) strategic and altruistic in their giving. (shrink)
In response to the rapidly increasing application and abuse of psychological tests in China, the Psychometrics Division of the Chinese Psychological Society published the 2008 revisions of the Chinese Code of Ethical Use of Psychological Tests. We investigated the implementation status of the code 2½ years after its promulgation. Sample included 284 psychological professionals and psychology graduate students. The average accuracy rate for the appropriate use of psychological tests was 67.1% (range = 25.5?97.5%), with 10 items having accuracy rates below (...) 45%. Participants remained uncertain about the clients' rights to information about the purpose, psychometric properties, and scores of the tests. The most frequent violations involved ?using psychological tests without psychometric information for entertainment purposes? and ?using SCL-90 to measure mental health of normal people.? (shrink)
This paper is a sketch of the politically pluralistic conception of human rights. The conception will be illustrated by a basic characteristic of human rights under the constraint of the fact in the political. It is pluralistic because it is compatible with different moral values and cultures with qualification. It is also political because it considers political actions in practice and it does not follow from any moral doctrine which may be more generally or intrinsically related to human rights. I (...) attempt to propose that the politically pluralistic conception of human rights can response to a challenge from the fact of reasonable pluralism in international discourse and practice. The steps of my argument will be constructed as follows: first, I will propose that the point in the political is to solve the first political question (Q) whether we consider the situation of a state or of international societies; secondly, I will identify that the most important characteristic of human rights is that individuals should be treated equally in certain proper ways (C), and will argue that C can make a contribution to solve Q; thirdly, I suppose human rights can be accepted by different political arrangements or cultures with C qualification if they do not become part of the problem while solving Q; finally, I will propose that political arrangements or cultures with C qualification do not have to limit to liberalism. If these four steps are successful, then there is a politically pluralistic conception of human rights which is constructed without a moral doctrine and is compatible with reasonable pluralism in human rights practice. (shrink)
There is a discrepancy between human rights theories and the contemporarily international human rights practice. The discrepancy is not only generated by theexpectable distance between the ideal and the real world, but also generated by the consequence which the orthodox conception of human rights theories cannot proper account for the role of human rights in the contemporarily international relations. Furthermore, the orthodox conception cannot be compatible with political pluralism; for it often justify the ground of human rights with human dignity (...) and presuppose the independence and the autonomy of persons. I propose that the orthodox conception fails to supply two good reasons for dispelling the doubt on the western cultural imperialism---one is human rights may beaccepted by the different cultures and moral codes with the method of overlapping consensus; the other is the orthodox conception does not prefer to liberal values. Instead of the orthodox conception, I suggest that we have to justify the ground of human rights according to the political pluralistic conception if we hope human rights can be universalized in the world. The political pluralistic conception will not only avoid the doubt on the western cultural imperialism, but alsoconsist with the role of human rights in the contemporarily international relations. (shrink)
During the latter half of the twentieth century political realism dominated national and international landscapes. The twenty-first century has seen the rise of neo‐conservatism, what Charles Krauthammer has called “democratic realism” and what others see as a re-birth of Wilsonianism—making the world safe for democracy. Robert M. Gates, U.S. Secretary of Defense, in a speech on Sept. 17, 2007 in Williamsburg, VA, at the World Forum on the Future of Democracy, acknowledged these different strains of current U.S. policy, saying that (...) “once again [people are] talking about the competing impulses in U.S. foreign policy: realism versus idealism, freedom versus security, values versus interests.” These competing concerns—but especially fear about terrorism coupled with asense of retributive justice—have divided much of the world. Nonetheless, it is clear that no matter what terms one gives to domestic and foreign policies, they are all in one way or another mired in the attitude that the end justifies the means, an attitude that will remain both morally and politically bankrupt until such time as people, policies, and programs embrace the concept of principled nonviolence, if not principled nonviolence itself. (shrink)