Ethics: A Very Short Introduction

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2009-09-14
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

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Our self-image as moral, well-behaved creatures is dogged by scepticism, relativism, hypocrisy, and nihilism, by the fear that in a Godless world science has unmasked us as creatures fated by our genes to be selfish and tribalistic, or competitive and aggressive. In this 'sparklingly clear'(Guardian) introduction to ethics Simon Blackburn tackles the major moral questions surrounding birth, death, happiness, desire and freedom, showing us how we should think about the meaning of life, and how we should mistrust the soundbite-sized absolutes that often dominate moral debates.

Author Biography

Simon Blackburn is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Cambridge.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
Seven Threats to Ethics
The Threat of the Death of God
The Threat of Relativism
The Threat of Egoism
The Threat from Evolutionary Theory
The Threat of Determinism and Futility
The Threat of Unreasonable Demands
The Threat of False Consciousness
Some Ethical Ideas
Desire and the Meaning of Life
The Greatest Happiness of the Greatest Number
Freedom from the Bad
Freedom and Paternalism
Rights and Natural Rights
Reasons and Foundations
Living Well and Doing Good
The Categorical Imperative
Contracts and Discourse
The Common Point of View
Confidence Restored
Further Reading
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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