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The Act Itself - Oxford Scholarship Online
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The Act Itself

Jonathan Bennett


The distinction between the consequences of an act and the act itself is supposed to define the fight between consequentialism and deontological moralities. This book, though sympathetic to consequentialism, aims less at taking sides in that debate than at clarifying the terms in which it is conducted. It aims to help the reader to think more clearly about some aspects of human conduct—especially the workings of the ‘by’‐locution, and some distinctions between making and allowing, between act and upshot, and between foreseeing and intending (the doctrine of double effect). It argues that moral ... More

Keywords: action, allowing, consequences, consequentialism, deontological ethics, double effect, ethics, intention

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 1998 Print ISBN-13: 9780198237914
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003 DOI:10.1093/019823791X.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Jonathan Bennett, author
Syracuse University, NY