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Against Absolute Goodness$
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Richard Kraut

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199844463

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199844463.001.0001

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The Case against Absolute Goodness Reviewed

The Case against Absolute Goodness Reviewed

Chapter 28 The Case against Absolute Goodness Reviewed
Against Absolute Goodness

Richard Kraut

Oxford University Press

This chapter reviews the arguments against absolute goodness. If some things should be valued because they are, quite simply, good, we should be able to say with some confidence what they are. But every nomination of an item for this category has encountered difficulties. The problem is not that whenever some people call something good, others say that it is bad (or that it is intermediate in value) and that such a dispute cannot be rationally resolved. We have not, in other words, been asking, “ How can we know which things to classify as good rather than bad?” The problem, rather, is whether this classificatory scheme of the absolutely good and the absolutely bad is necessary or useful.

Keywords:   absolute goodness, good, bad, value

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