Natural Goodness and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Color:
Image not available

To view this video download Flash Player

 


or
Sign in to turn on 1-Click ordering
Sell Us Your Item
For a $5.70 Gift Card
Trade in
More Buying Choices
Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Start reading Natural Goodness on your Kindle in under a minute.

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

Natural Goodness [Paperback]

by Philippa Foot
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

List Price: $55.00
Price: $33.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
You Save: $21.01 (38%)
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
Want it tomorrow, April 25? Choose One-Day Shipping at checkout. Details
Free Two-Day Shipping for College Students with Amazon Student

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition $21.99  
Hardcover --  
Paperback $33.99  
Sell Us Your Books
Get up to 80% back when you sell us your books, even if you didn't buy them at Amazon. Learn more

Book Description

December 4, 2003 019926547X 978-0199265473
Philippa Foot has for many years been one of the most distinctive and influential thinkers in moral philosophy. Long dissatisfied with the moral theories of her contemporaries, she has gradually evolved a theory of her own that is radically opposed not only to emotivism and prescriptivism but also to the whole subjectivist, anti-naturalist movement deriving from David Hume. Dissatisfied with both Kantian and utilitarian ethics, she claims to have isolated a special form of evaluation that predicates goodness and defect only to living things considered as such; she finds this form of evaluation in moral judgements. Her vivid discussion covers topics such as practical rationality, erring conscience, and the relation between virtue and happiness, ending with a critique of Nietzsche's immoralism. This long-awaited book exposes a highly original approach to moral philosophy and represents a fundamental break from the assumptions of recent debates. Foot challenges many prominent philosophical arguments and attitudes; but hers is a work full of life and feeling, written for anyone intrigued by the deepest questions about goodness and human.

Frequently Bought Together

Natural Goodness + The Sources of Normativity + Self-Constitution: Agency, Identity, and Integrity
Price for all three: $90.11

Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

Review


"...an important new book from Phillippa Foot, a central figure in the revival of ethical naturalism and character-based ethics.... Natural Goodness provides a valuable statement of the mature insights of one of recent moral philosophy's major contributors." -- The Review of Metaphysics


"Natural Goodness is an exciting and provoking book, more interesting than most books in moral philosophy....What she has given us both in this book and elsewhere deserves nothing but intellectual and moral gratitude."-- Alasdair MacIntyre, Philosophical Quarterly


"One of the most fascinating ideas in ancient philosophy--that there is a close relation between human happiness and virtue--has been largely neglected in modern philosophy. In this highly significant book, Philippa Foot revives that idea, rooting it in an understanding of human goodness as depending on the nature of our species. In more than one sense, it is a work of great integrity. Beautifully and economically written, and powerfully argued, it will become a classic of modern moral philosophy."--Roger Crisp


About the Author

Philippa Foot is Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at the University of California, Los Angeles, Honourary Fellow of Somerville College, Oxford, and a Fellow of the British Academy.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 136 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA (December 4, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 019926547X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199265473
  • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 8 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #340,185 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
(10)
3.9 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
38 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Virtue, Happiness and the Form of Human Life February 19, 2002
Format:Hardcover
This short work is certainly the most beautiful and moving treatise on moral philosophy that has yet been written in the contemporary Anglo-American tradition. Foot's unusually brilliant use of examples, most of them drawn from life and literature, makes Natural Goodness a very pleasant and accessible book to read. But the purpose of these illustrations is to outline a very deep theory of the good life, rational choice and moral reasons. Her main aim is to oppose both the popular neo-Humean and neo-Kantian positions in contemporary moral philosophy and to defend a sort of "neo-Aristotelianism."
Foot begins with the simple point that it is not only part of well-constituted human life to have the capacity to see and hear (as it is of mole or blue-jay life), but also to *reason practically about how to live*. Practical reasoning is not an accidental feature of some human lives, as hat-wearing is. But just as it is part of a soundly constituted human life to discriminate colors and sounds *within certain specific ranges,* so it is part of a soundly constituted human life to *reason practically in certain specific ways*, that is, to operate with certain forms of practical reason. In the first instance, it is an open question what these forms of reasoning are. But whatever they are, things might be quite different with, say Martians: they see only "in black and white", as we say; they have no hearing, let's suppose; and they do not reason about their own future good or in accordance with ideas of justice, at least when they are well functioning. With human beings, Foot argues, prudence and justice are genuine virtues: it belongs to this kind of organism to pursue its own future good, for example, and to take account of other human beings in some way.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
70 of 82 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, appealing, ultimately unsatisfying July 27, 2002
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I agree with most everything in this elegant, well-reasoned book. Unfortunately, I think, it will convince no one not already of like mind--and rightly should not.
Foot's thesis is that "good" refers to fulfilling "the life form of the species" to which one belongs. Thus, a tree has good roots if, in the circumstances in which it grows, those roots allow for it to be a good specimen of the sort of tree that it is. Thus "natural good" depends on facts about one's species and the circumstances in which one finds one's self--dissolving the "fact/value distinction." To be a good person, then, is to fulfill the life form of our species under the circumstances in which we find ourselves--allowing that there may be many specific ways of doing this very general thing. As an earlier reviewer noted, Foot maintains that for humans, a certain sort of "practical reason" is characteristic of our species, since certain forms of life define us and reason must serve those defining characteristics; not to reason thusly is to be defective, in a way analogous to a shallow, poorly dispersed root system in a tall, heavy tree growing in sandy soil.
There are many problems with this.
(1) Contra to the earlier reviewer, I believe Foot has sleights of hand of her own:
(a) Traditionally, the dilemma of practical reasoning is, "And what about circumstances in which practical rationality demands that one act against virtue?" E.g., a CEO must maximize profits, despite what that does to the lives of employees and the businesses of competitors. Foot simply turns it around: She insists that, virtue being normative, to defy virtue is to be irrational. That is, practical reason must fultill the demands of virtue to be rational.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you?
22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Virtue, Happiness and the Form of Human Life February 19, 2002
Format:Hardcover
This short work is certainly the most beautiful and moving treatise on moral philosophy that has yet been written in the contemporary Anglo-American tradition. Foot's unusually brilliant use of examples, most of them drawn from life and literature, makes Natural Goodness a very pleasant and accessible book to read. But the purpose of these illustrations is to outline a very deep theory of the good life, rational choice and moral reasons. Her main aim is to oppose both the popular neo-Humean and neo-Kantian positions in contemporary moral philosophy and to defend a sort of "neo-Aristotelianism."
Foot begins with the simple point that it is not only part of well-constituted human life to have the capacity to see and hear (as it is of mole or blue-jay life), but also to *reason practically about how to live*. Practical reasoning is not an accidental feature of some human lives, as hat-wearing is. But just as it is part of a soundly constituted human life to discriminate colors and sounds *within certain specific ranges,* so it is part of a soundly constituted human life to *reason practically in certain specific ways*, that is, to operate with certain forms of practical reason. In the first instance, it is an open question what these forms of reasoning are. But whatever they are, things might be quite different with, say Martians: they see only "in black and white", as we say; they have no hearing, let's suppose; and they do not reason about their own future good or in accordance with ideas of justice, at least when they are well functioning. With human beings, Foot argues, prudence and justice are genuine virtues: it belongs to this kind of organism to pursue its own future good, for example, and to take account of other human beings in some way.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Philippa Foot. Natural Goodness
It has not yet arrived, but I'm sure I'll value it. It's been highly recommended by people I respect and has its place in a philosophical tradition I follow.
Published 16 months ago by Mr. Martin N. White
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant & eminently readable
Stylistically, Foot's Natural Goodness is eminently readable. It's tone is so familiar and real it seems almost conversational, and it would serve other academics well to imitate... Read more
Published 22 months ago by TransLorentz
2.0 out of 5 stars Great Axiom, Horrible Miscalculation
A moment of genius appears in the early pages, only to deflate like a flat tire. Foote, a devotee of virtue ethics, has sought to "ground" ethics in a value system, in which she... Read more
Published on June 20, 2009 by D. S. Heersink
4.0 out of 5 stars A Welcome Respite from Traditional Ethical Theory
Traditionally, economic theory has taken rational individuals to be self-regarding and consequentialist. Read more
Published on August 26, 2008 by Herbert Gintis
5.0 out of 5 stars Thank you...
Goodness resides in the hearts of those who are able to think outside themselves especially those who are have the courage to put their lives in danger in order to protect others. Read more
Published on April 11, 2005 by Reviewer
2.0 out of 5 stars disappointing
The tight, hard reasoning that Foot was once known for
is gone, and its place has been taken by ethical wishful
thinking. Read more
Published on October 25, 2002
5.0 out of 5 stars Virtue, Happiness and the Form of Human Life
This short work is certainly the most beautiful and moving treatise on moral philosophy that has yet been written in the contemporary Anglo-American tradition. Read more
Published on February 19, 2002 by prudence@justice.com
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews
ARRAY(0xa0335e94)

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?


Forums

There are no discussions about this product yet.
Be the first to discuss this product with the community.
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 



Look for Similar Items by Category