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Opting for the Best – Oughts and Options - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Opting for the Best: Oughts and Options

Douglas W. Portmore


The book concerns what is, perhaps, the least controversial normative principle concerning action: you ought to perform your best option—best, that is, in terms of whatever ultimately matters. The book sets aside the question of what ultimately matters so as to focus on the following questions. What are our options? Which options do we assess directly in terms of their own goodness and which do we assess in terms of the goodness of the more encompassing options of which they’re a proper part? What do we hold fixed when assessing how good an option is? Do we, for instance, hold fixed the agent’ ... More

Keywords: actualism, consequentialism, control, maximalism, morality, possibilism, rationality, responsibility, supererogation, teleology

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2019 Print ISBN-13: 9780190945350
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2019 DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190945350.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Douglas W. Portmore, author
Professor of Philosophy, School of Historical, Philosophical, and Religious Studies, Arizona State University