Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Ethics and HumanityThemes from the Philosophy of Jonathan Glover$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

N. Ann Davis, Richard Keshen, and Jeff McMahan

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780195325195

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195325195.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 28 January 2021

The Foundations of Humanity

The Foundations of Humanity

(p.175) 9 The Foundations of Humanity
Ethics and Humanity

Roger Crisp (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter concerns the metaethical foundations of Jonathan Glover's project in Humanity: A Moral History of the Twentieth Century. It begins by outlining both Glover's doubts about so‐called external reasons for action and his notion that ethics can be grounded in ‘self‐creation’. A distinction is drawn between nihilism about reasons, and a narrow version of externalism according to which there are reasons to act grounded in self‐creation. A mathematical analogy is used to suggest that the metaphysical and epistemological implications of externalism about reasons may be less worrying than Glover believes. The deep disagreement that persists in ethics, however, does require us often to suspend judgment. The chapter ends by suggesting that, by Glover's own lights, we should think that certain components of common sense morality, such as the acts and omissions doctrine, are significantly more harmful than the ‘monsters inside us’.

Keywords:   metaethics, external reasons, reasons, moral epistemology, disagreement, moral disagreement

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .