Ethics History, Theory, and Contemporary Issues

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  • Edition: 6th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 9/15/2015
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

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Ethics: History, Theory, and Contemporary Issues, Sixth Edition, features fifty-nine selections organized into three parts, providing instructors with great flexibility in designing and teaching a variety of courses in moral philosophy. Spanning 2,500 years of ethical theory, the first part, Historical Sources, ranges from ancient Greece to the twentieth century and now includes the complete text of John Dewey's Theory of Valuation. The second part, Modern Ethical Theory, includes many of the most important essays of the past century. The discussion of varieties of normative ethics continues in the work of major contemporary philosophers, while landmark selections reflect concern with moral language and the justification of morality. In the third part, Contemporary Moral Problems, the readings present the current debates over abortion, euthanasia, famine relief, environmentalism, and the use of torture in interrogations, as well as essays on the trolley problem, death, and the meaning of life. One-third of the selections are authored by women. Wherever possible, each reading is printed in its entirety.

The sixth edition adds study questions after each reading in order to help students delve more deeply into each work and also features eight new selections and expanded introductions. A password-protected Instructor's Manual is available on the book's Ancillary Resource Center.

Author Biography

Steven M. Cahn is Professor of Philosophy at The City University of New York Graduate Center. He is the author or editor of more than fifty books. Most recently, he wrote From Student to Scholar: A Candid Guide to Becoming a Professor (2008) and coauthored Happiness and Goodness: Philosophical Reflections on Living Well (2015). Dr. Cahn is the editor of The World of Philosophy (OUP, 2015), Exploring Philosophy, Fifth Edition (OUP, 2014), Political Philosophy, Third Edition (OUP, 2014), and Exploring Ethics, Third Edition (OUP, 2013).

Peter Markie is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Missouri, Columbia. He is the author of Descartes's Gambit (1988) and the coauthor of Introducing Ethics (OUP, 2014).

Table of Contents

*=New to this Edition
Introduction, Alasdair MacIntyre
1. Plato
Defence of Socrates
Phaedo (115d-118)
Republic (selections)
2. Aristotle
Nicomachean Ethics (selections)
3. Epicurus
Letter to Menoeceus
Leading Doctrines
4. Cicero
On Duties (selections)
5. Epictetus
6. Augustine
Enchiridion on Faith, Hope, and Love (selections)
7. Thomas Aquinas
Summa Contra Gentiles (selections)
8. Thomas Hobbes
Leviathan (selections)
9. Joseph Butler
Fifteen Sermons (selections) [expanded]
10. David Hume
A Treatise of Human Nature (selections)
An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals (selections)
11. Immanuel Kant
Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals
12. Jeremy Bentham
An Introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation (selections)
13. John Stuart Mill
14. Friedrich Nietzsche
On the Genealogy of Morals (selections)
* 15. John Dewey
Theory of Valuation
16. Albert Camus
The Myth of Sisyphus (selections)
17. Jean-Paul Sartre
Existentialism Is a Humanism
Introduction, James Rachels
18. G.E. Moore
Principia Ethica (selections)
19. H.A. Prichard
Does Moral Philosophy Rest on a Mistake?
20. A.J. Ayer
Language, Truth, and Logic (selections)
21. C.L. Stevenson
The Emotive Meaning of Ethical Terms
22. R.M. Hare
Freedom and Reason (selections)
* 23. J.J.C. Smart
Extreme and Restricted Utilitarianism
24. Bernard Williams
A Critique of Utilitarianism
25. W.D. Ross
The Right and the Good (selections)
26. John Rawls
A Theory of Justice (selections)
27. David Gauthier
Why Contractarianism?
* 28. T.M. Scanlon
Contractualism and Utilitarianism
29. Joel Feinberg
The Nature and Value of Rights
30. Barbara Herman
On the Value of Acting from the Motive of Duty
31. Philippa Foot
Morality as a System of Hypothetical Imperatives
32. Christine Korsgaard
Skepticism about Practical Reason
33. Thomas Nagel
Moral Luck
34. Susan Wolf
Moral Saints
35. G.E.M. Anscombe
Modern Moral Philosophy
* 36. Julia Annas
Being Virtuous and Doing the Right Thing
37. Virginia Held
Feminist Transformations of Moral Theory
38. Gilbert Harman
The Nature of Morality (selections)
39. Nicholas L. Sturgeon
Moral Explanations
40. J.L. Mackie
Ethics: Inventing Right and Wrong (selections)
41. John McDowell
Values and Secondary Qualities
* 42. Walter Sinnott-Armstrong
Moral Intuitionism Meets Empirical Psychology
* 43. Mary Midgley
Trying Out One's New Sword
* 44. James Rachels
Egoism and Moral Skepticism
Introduction, Peter Singer
45. Judith Jarvis Thomson
A Defense of Abortion
46. Mary Anne Warren
On the Moral and Legal Status of Abortion
47. Don Marquis
An Argument That Abortion is Wrong
48. Rosalind Hursthouse
Virtue Theory and Abortion
49. James Rachels
Active and Passive Euthanasia
50. Philippa Foot
Killing and Letting Die
51. Peter Singer
Famine, Affluence, and Morality
52. John Arthur
Famine Relief and the Ideal Moral Code
53. Elliot Sober
Philosophical Problems for Environmentalism
54. Henry Shue
55. Daniel J. Hill
Ticking Bombs, Torture, and the Analogy with Self-Defense
56. Judith Jarvis Thomson
* The Trolley Problem
57. Judith Jarvis Thomson
Turning the Trolley
58. Thomas Nagel
59. Richard Taylor
The Meaning of Life

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