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On Loyalty and Loyalties – The Contours of a Problematic Virtue - Oxford Scholarship Online
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On Loyalty and Loyalties: The Contours of a Problematic Virtue

John Kleinig


This book provides an examination of the nature and virtuousness of loyalty and of some of its primary associations: friends, families, organizations, professions, nations, countries (patriotism), and religion (absolute loyalty). Loyalty is distinguished from its cognates and contrasts, its role in human associative life is articulated, and its status as a virtue is defended. The particularist–universalist debate is addressed, the idea of a loyal opposition explored, and its limits defined.

Keywords: loyalty, virtue, particularism/impartialism, loyal opposition, limits of loyalty, friendship, associative ties, patriotism, absolute loyalty

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2014 Print ISBN-13: 9780199371259
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2014 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199371259.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

John Kleinig, author
John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY