New PDF release: A Theory of Freedom

By Stanley I. Benn

ISBN-10: 0511609116

ISBN-13: 9780511609114

ISBN-10: 0521342600

ISBN-13: 9780521342605

ISBN-10: 0521348021

ISBN-13: 9780521348027

This publication is a huge contribution to the learn of the philosophy of motion, ethical philosophy, and political philosophy. Its imperative notion is a extensively unorthodox concept of rational motion. so much modern Anglo-American philosophers think that motion is stimulated by way of wish. Professor Benn rejects the doctrine and replaces it with a reformulation of Kant's moral and political idea, during which rational motion should be decided just by ideas, despite effects. The booklet analyzes the best way worth conflicts may be rationally resolved, the objectivity of worth, the concept that of ethical character, the foundations of non-interference and appreciate of folks, the beliefs of autonomy and group and diverse facets of person rights--focusing at the rights to freedom, welfare, and privateness.

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The recognition of something as good or right, or as profitable or health giving, is quite sufficient to explain why a person who believes it to be so believes also that it is the thing to do, and to explain why he does it. The curious persistence and apparent unshakability of the Humean model is due not only to its being tailor-made for a wide range of cases in which reasoning is clearly instrumental, but also to a less obvious feature. Adding some general motivating desire to what might be an already adequate explanation does not obviously falsify the account, especially if it is hard to tell whether such a desire is really there or not.

Equally, the greater will be the measure of agreement in the society about how someone is to go about justifying himself. Moral assuredness in the individual will be matched by basic moral certainties in public debate. Conversely, the greater the scope for conflict and perplexity, the more conscious we are likely to be that each must do his own moral work, making over his socially endowed moral resources into a pattern as coherent as he can make it. Ironically, autonomy - living by a law, in Rousseau's phrase, that one prescribes to oneself- is an ideal for an age and culture like this one, not for the Spartans and Roman republicans that Rousseau so admired.

Nevertheless, to be committed to the actions implied by a set of propositions one must not only grasp what they are, but also believe the propositions. A student of religion who knows what a Catholic is committed to by his beliefs - confession, attending mass, taking communion - is not himself committed to those actions merely by understanding the propositions. They must figure in his own belief system, not merely as beliefs about the meaning of other people's beliefs, but as propositions held true.

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A Theory of Freedom by Stanley I. Benn


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