Moral Theory: A Non-Consequentialist Approach

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9780631219033: Moral Theory: A Non-Consequentialist Approach
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Moral Theory sets out the basic system used to solve moral problems, the system that consequentialists deride as 'traditional morality'. The central concepts, principles and distinctions of traditional morality are explained and defended: rights; justice; the good; virtue; the intention/foresight distinction; the acts/omissions distinction; and, centrally, the fundamental value of human life.

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The last thirty years have seen the burgeoning of applied ethics, in which moral philosophy is applied to concrete ethical problems. While this is a welcome development, it is also true that the discipline has been dominated by one particular ethical theory, namely consequentialism.

Moral Theory, and its companion volume Applied Ethics, provide a much-needed alternative to consequentialist orthodoxy. Moral Theory sets out the basic system used to solve moral problems, the system that consequentialists deride as 'traditional morality' and which they believe is 'dead'. The central concepts, principles and distinctions of traditional morality are explained and defended: rights; justice; the good; virtue; the intention/foresight distinction; the acts/omissions distinction; and, centrally, the fundamental value of human life.

By challenging contemporary thinking, Moral Theory and Applied Ethics make a distinctive and provocative contribution to current debate, which will be useful both to undergraduates and professional philosophers.

About the Author:

David S. Oderberg is Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Reading. A graduate of the Universities of Melbourne and Oxford, he is author of The Metaphysics of Identity over Time (1993); co-editor, with Jacqueline A. Laing, of Human Lives: Critical Essays on Consequentialist Bioethics (1997), and editor of Form and Matter: Themes in Contemporary Metaphysics (Blackwell, 1999).

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