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Moral ThinkingIts Levels, Method, and Point$
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R. M. Hare

Print publication date: 1981

Print ISBN-13: 9780198246602

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0198246609.001.0001

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Another's Sorrow

Another's Sorrow

5 Another's Sorrow
Moral Thinking

R. M. Hare

Oxford University Press

Details how the logical properties of moral concepts help us to construct moral arguments. In ordinary moral thinking, we have our intuitive or prima facie principles to start from, and shall normally treat as prima facie relevant the features that figure in them; but because we cannot take our prima facie principles for granted in critical thinking, we must be prepared to consider other features besides these as candidates for relevancy. In discussing a way of thinking about moral questions critically and rationally, the question of our knowledge of what it is like to be somebody else who is suffering is examined. When we come to universalize our prescriptions, we have to consider only those prescriptions and preferences of others, which they would retain if they were always prudent.

Keywords:   Metaethics, morality, suffering

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