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Ruling Passions A Theory of Practical Reasoning

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ISBN-10: 0199241392

ISBN-13: 9780199241392

Edition: 2000

Authors: Simon Blackburn

List price: $40.95
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Description:

Simon Blackburn puts forward a compelling original philosophy of human motivation and morality. He maintains that we cannot get clear about ethics until we get clear about human nature. So these are the sorts of questions he addresses: Why do we behave as we do? Can we improve? Is our ethics at war with our passions, or is it an upshot of those passions? Blackburn seeks the answers in an exploration of guilt, shame, disgust, and other moral emotions; he draws also on game theory and cognitive science in his account of the structures of human motivation. Many philosophers have wanted a naturalistic ethics--a theory that integrates our understanding of human morality with the rest of our understanding of the world we live in. What is special about Blackburn's naturalistic ethics is that it does not debunk the ethical by reducing it to the non-ethical. At the same time he banishes the spectres of scepticism and relativism that have haunted recent moral philosophy. Ruling Passions sets ethics in the context of human nature: it offers a solution to the puzzle of how ethics can maintain its authority even though it is rooted in the very emotions and motivations that it exists to control.
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Book details

List price: $40.95
Copyright year: 2000
Publisher: Oxford University Press, Incorporated
Publication date: 1/11/2001
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 352
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 1.738
Language: English

Organizing Practice: The Elements of Ethics
A Practical Subject
Inputs and Outputs
Emotional Ascent
Guilt, Shame, and the Rejection of Ethics
Privacy and Principle
Things That Concern us
Virtues, Ends, Duties
Virtue First?
Duty First?
Explanation and Justification
Consequentialism First: One Thought Too Few?
Naturalizing Norms
In the Beginning was the Deed
Prelude: Norms and Functions
States of Mind: Satan and Othello
The Ethical Proposition and Frege's Abyss
Representation and Minimalism
The Ethical Proposition: What it is not
Dionysus and Apollo
Concepts, Rules, and Forms of Life
Eighteenth-Century Philosophy of Mind?
The Cute and the Lewd
Response-Dependent Accounts
Cornell Realism
Looking out for Yourself
Emotions and Decisions
Economic Man
The Empirical Claim: Butler on Desire and Interest
The Self and Biology
Self-Regarding versus Self-Referential Desire
Ought We To Be Selfish?
Game Theory and Rational Choice
Utilities, Preferences, and Choices
Blackmailers and Centipedes
The Prisoners' Dilemma
Toxins, Boxes, and Reasons
The Growth of Trust
The Good, the Right, and the Common Point of View
Vibrating in Sympathy: Hume and Smith
Aristotle's Well-Being
Kant's Dream
Hare's Version
The Knave Again
Self-Control, Reason, and Freedom
Self-Control: Hume-Friendly Reason
The Kantian Captain
The Fundamental Mistake about Deliberation
Self-Legislation, Practical Identity, and the Normative Question
Rational Selves
Reason, Rawls, Contracts, and Liberalism
Relativism, Subjectivism, Knowledge
Relativism in a First-Order Ethic
Postmodernist Relativism
Ramsey's Ladder
Relativism and Authority
Knowledge, Objectivity, Truth
Common Questions
Bibliography
Index