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Moral Vision: An Introduction to Ethics Paperback – August 25, 1988

ISBN-13: 978-0631159452 ISBN-10: 0631159452 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell; 1 edition (August 25, 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0631159452
  • ISBN-13: 978-0631159452
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 5.9 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #943,172 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

This book introduces the reader to ethics by examining a current and important debate. During the last fifty years the orthodox position in ethics has been a broadly non-cognitivist one: since there are no moral facts, moral remarks are best understood, not as attempting to describe the world, but as having some other function - such as expressing the attitudes or preferences of the speaker. In recent years this position has been increasingly challenged by moral realists who maintain that there are moral facts; there is a truth of the matter in ethics, which is independent of our views, and which we seek to discover.

Unfortunately much of this interesting debate found in the work of McDowell, Wiggins, Putnam, Blackburn and others is not easily accessible to undergraduates. McNaughton presents many of the major issues in ethics by way of a clear exposition of both sides of this argument and assumes no prior knowledge of philosophy. Topics discussed include: moral observation, moral motivation, amoralism and wickedness, moral weakness, cultural relativism and utilitarianism. The book concludes that a convincing case can be made out for a radical form of moral realism in which moral virtue is found, not in the following of correct moral principles, but rather in the development of moral sensitivity. Moral Vision is a clear and engaged introduction to an important, and often troubling, debate.

About the Author

David McNaughton is Professor of Philosophy at Florida State University.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Warren Legg on October 22, 2003
Format: Paperback
This book offers an introduction and analysis of meta-ethical theory regarding the source of moral value. The subject of the debate is the non-cognitivism - moral realism debate. If this means nothing to you, or very little, and you are interested in meta-ethics(!) then you would benefit from reading this book. If this is familiar territory, then you will re-read it many times, as I have. Why?
The text is beautifully written, in a lucid style combining rigorously structured argument and vibrant illustration by example. It is clear that the author understands the subject with depth and precision. Respective positions are constructed from their crude (but intuitive) first formulations, and worked-up into defensible sophisticated theory by means of objection. Whilst the discussion is conceptual, and contemporary, it acknowledges the historical basis of its derivation, and its relevance to surrounding literature. This is supplemented through providing helpful further reading lists at the end of each chapter.
This is a book that engages with the reader, so that one feels as if they are participating in the debate themselves. It is rewarding as one experiences a progressive and substantial appreciation of the subject throughout the work.
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