Description - Means, Ends, and Persons by Robert Audi
No one wants to be treated merely as a means-"used," in a sense. But just what is this repugnant treatment? Audi's point of departure is Kant's famous principle that we must treat persons as ends in themselves and never merely as means. Treatment of these kinds is conduct, a complex three-dimensional notion whose central elements are action, its motivation, and the manner of its performance. He shows how the notions of treating persons as ends and, by contrast, merely as means, can be anchored outside Kant and clarified in ways that enhance their usefulness both in ethical theory and in practical ethics, where they have much intuitive force. Audi constructs an account of treatment of persons-of what it is, how it differs from mere interpersonal action, and what ethical standards govern it. In accounting for such treatment, the book develops a wider conception of ethics than is commonly implicit in utilitarian, deontological, or virtue theories. These results contribute to ethical theory, but in its discussion of diverse narrative examples of moral and immoral conduct, the book also contributes to normative ethics.
Audi's theory of conduct takes account of motivational elements that are not traits of character and of behavioral elements that are not manifestations of virtue or vice. Here it goes beyond the leading virtue approaches. The theory also advances rule ethics by framing wider conception of moral behavior-roughly, of acting morally. The results advance both normative ethics and ethical theory. For moral philosophy, the book frames conceptions, articulates distinctions, and formulates principles; and for practical ethics, it provides a multitude of cases that illustrate both the scope of moral responsibility and the normative standards for living up to it.
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(217mm x 155mm x 19mm)
Oxford University Press Inc
Publisher: Oxford University Press Inc
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Book Reviews - Means, Ends, and Persons by Robert Audi
Author Biography - Robert Audi
Robert Audi is an internationally known contributor to ethics. He has published books and numerous papers in the field, and he lectures widely in ethics, moral psychology, philosophy of action, and related areas.