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Rethinking the Good – Moral Ideals and the Nature of Practical Reasoning - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Rethinking the Good: Moral Ideals and the Nature of Practical Reasoning

Larry S. Temkin


In choosing between moral alternatives—choosing between various forms of ethical action—we typically make calculations of the following kind: A is better than B; B is better than C; therefore A is better than C. These inferences use the principle of transitivity and are fundamental to many forms of practical and theoretical theorizing, not just in moral and ethical theory but in economics. Indeed they are so common as to be almost invisible. What this book shows is that, shockingly, if we want to continue making plausible judgments, we cannot continue to make these assumptions. The book shows ... More

Keywords: moral alternatives, ethical action, principle of transitivity, moral theory, ethical theory, moral ideals, value judgments, normative commitments

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2012 Print ISBN-13: 9780199759446
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2012 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199759446.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Larry S. Temkin, author
Rutgers University