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Relational BeingBeyond Self and Community$
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Kenneth J. Gergen

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199846269

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780199846269.001.0001

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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: 26 September 2021



From Relativism to Relational Responsibility

(p.351) 11 Morality
Relational Being

Kenneth J. Gergen

Oxford University Press

This chapter explores the moral and spiritual implications of relational being, with emphasis on relativism and relational responsibility. It considers the challenge of the moral good by focusing on those striving to establish moral foundations or fundamental ethical principles to guide human conduct. It first assesses the potential of all relations to generate moral goods, a process that may be termed first-order morality, and the challenge of moral relativism. It then turns to a discussion of second-order morality, a non-foundational ethic for sustaining the very possibility of co-creating the good. The chapter concludes by analyzing relational responsibility in practice.

Keywords:   relational being, relational responsibility, moral good, human conduct, first-order morality, moral relativism, second-order morality

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