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141. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Indoo Pandey Khanduri Aristotle’s Rectificatory Justice as Foundation of Social Justice
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The present research paper is a modest attempt to explore the philosophical foundations of contemporary social justice from the underlying spirit of rectificatory justice of Aristotle as elaborated in the book five of Nicomachean Ethics. From Aristotlean Ethics, the foundations of social justice could be explored on four fold dimension of spirit, base, assumptions and mechanism. The spirit of rectificatory justice is rectification or correction. The base is arithmetical distribution of the resources on the basis of positive discrimination. The assumption is that injustice has occurred and mechanism is to reduce the undue gains and undue losses. For clear understanding of the theme, we divide it in three parts. The first part of the paper will examine Aristotle’s definition and types of justice and describe briefly the notion of rectificatory justice. The second part will discuss the complex notion of social justice which incorporating brief description of the unjust discrimination based on false assumptions of caste, creed, and sex etc., for debarring and depriving the suppressed group from the due facility and opportunities.. And in the third concluding part, we shall try to see how four fundamentals of Aristotle’s rectificatory justice: spirit, base, assumption and mechanism have contributed to social justice. We shall also try to understand peculiarity of social justice and Aristotelian foundation of recificatory justice in terms of its relevance as the remedial directions.
142. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Anastasia A. Kokovkina Ecological Crisis and Global Responsibility Ethics
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The paper presents an analysis of man and nature relation dynamic in the European culture, its aftermaths and formation of ecology oriented ethic theory. After man has realized his/her being divorced from nature he/she begins perceiving him/herself in the light of his/her own interests. Nature is deprived of its self virtue, it is only considered as a sphere servicing man’s need, its objects have the right to exist as long as they are useful or pleasurable. Nature is excluded from the sphere of morals which only covers interpersonal relation. This attitude leads to the biosphere system crisis, fraught with destruction of natural and human world. The current unprecedented situation of man’s radically increasing technogenic influence on nature demands that this new theory be built up, the theory ought to cover nature and to take into account aftereffect of man’s activities remote in space and time. Hans Jonas is making an attempt to create the theory in his book Das Prinzip Verantwortung: Versuch einer Ethik für die technologische Zivilisation.
143. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Angela Kallhoff Four Types of Natural Norms: A Reconsideration of Aristotelian Naturalism
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Since the Aristotelian notion of eudaimonia was translated as “human flourishing”, the underlying premises have been under discussion. Aristotle appears to say that eudiamonia consists in an excellent development of persons; a human life-form can be sorted out in comparison with other species. This is the starting-point for discussing the relationship between natural capacities of persons and their good lives. In this contribution, I shall develop a scheme which allows interpreting Aristotelian naturalism in four ways: as a theory about natural functions, about natural thriving, about natural mastership, and about comprehensive self-realization. In particular, I shall argue that at its heart Aristotelian naturalism is not about the good life of persons. Instead, it comprises a set of normative claims inherent in his understanding of nature. Building these claims into a theory of the good life is a second step which needs to be analysed on different grounds. In discussing these possibilities, one central outcome will be that none of these ways of reasoning about the good life needs to be rejected because it reintroduces evaluative statements into a theory of nature. Instead, the central problem in reintroducing them into contemporary theories results from interpreting them as a norm for the good life of persons.
144. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Hua Chu Liu On Hursthouse’s Argument for the Objectivity of Virtues
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Rosalind Husthouse’s argumentation for the objectivity of virtue ethics includes three sub-arguments. But her explanations are problematic, because the “objectivity” argument does not have sufficient perspicuity, nor have abundant explanatory persuasion. In comparison with the perspicuity of structure in her work On Virtue Ethics, the three concerning explanations appear more obscure. And such obscurity results in her distinction of the three propositions being groundless, and the effect of her explanations lower than expected. Therefore, argumentation for the objectivity of virtue ethics should use another approach.
145. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Pokker Perilamkulath Kunhammadhajee Ethics and Deconstruction: A Subaltern Perspective
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Deconstruction has paved way for new understanding in almost all realms of knowledge. As a philosophical tool it has produced unprecedented results by its peculiar analysis of many of the canonical texts. Jacques Derrida has shown the way of revealing the limits of our own understanding and of realizing the role of margins in the life-world. In any society the hegemony of ideas exists as the reigning force and the cerebral activities inevitably involve the play of hegemonic ideas. Margins necessarily remain in the periphery of the center. All social discourses hence harbor both hegemonic and marginal implications. Hegemony stands for the ruling ideas and margin for the oppressed or receding ideas. So, in the social interactions communicative ethics is possible only by revealing the relation between the hegemonic and the marginalized. The deconstructive strategy has produced radical shift in the approaches towards the texts. In India or elsewhere the written words communicate certain ideological positions in all realms of life. One of the most important socio-ethical spheres is the implementation of law and the constitutional procedures. Death penalty, for instance, claims to stand for the fulfillment of justice. It is based on “a tooth for a tooth, an eye for an eye” principle. Actually justice never implies punishment since it does not serve any of the interests of social justice. On the other hand, retribution is based on the principle of violence incurring the annihilation of the other. Any punishment involving violence or harm is unethical on the basis of its own logic. The present paper proceeds to deconstruct the logic of punishment and ethics of the constitutional kind.
146. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Dan Lin The 3H Pattern of Scientific Ethics Norms
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Scientific ethics norms include human nature, history, honesty, etc. Owing to scientific ethics norms have resolved into responsibility of the subjects of all kinds of benefit, it means that the responsibility of organizational system of science is not only expanding the correct knowledge, but also the goal that towards trying to gain greater benefits for human being society and the environment. So, in different situation, it can constitute the different understanding and evaluation of scientific activities. The tetrahedron changes with the specific conditions.
147. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Ali Haydar Kutan Is Epicurus’ Ataraxia Individualistic?
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According to Kant Epicurean ethics is a “self-love” ethics, or “an ethics in pursuit of one’s own happiness.” He contends that such a conception of ethics cannot produce any morality in an objective sense. Epicurus contends that ataraxia, a state in which all bodily and mental disturbances are remedied is the ultimate goal of life. In this paper, I will try to show how by beginning the concept of pleasure Epicurus tries to erect a system of ethics which is based on equality and justice. We will see that in this ethical system the attainment of happiness for an individual is necessarily bound with the happiness of the other individuals. And the attainment of pleasure or happiness is conditioned by virtue. In this regard, it would not be wrong to draw the conclusion that the ethical goal of Epicurus turns out to be ataraxia for all which thus refutes the Kant’s depiction of Epicurean ethics as self-love ethics.
148. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
A. J. Kreider Rights, Burdens, and the Ethics of Care
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A consequence of adopting an ethics of care is that society would reorganize itself in a way that directs greater resources to more vulnerable people. This is surely a good thing. However, something that has been largely ignored in the literature is the relationship between empathy and a caring attitude, rights, and the burdens that we place on one another. The view I will defend here suggests that while a caring attitude will generally work to enhance the lives and opportunities of vulnerable members of society, there are some cases wherein the opposite will result – that in some cases an ethics of care demands that these more vulnerable members eschew a focus on their interests, even if they have a right to society’s resources. The reason is that accepting these resources places too great a burden on the rest of society, and that failing to recognize the burden reflects a lack of empathy.
149. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Nikil Mukerji The Use and Abuse of Trolley Cases
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When moral philosophers evaluate moral theories they often draw on trolley cases. A number of authors have recently put forward objections against this approach to moral inquiry. In my paper, I will consider some of their criticisms. In doing so, I will not try to address the question whether the methodic use of trolley cases is ultimately defensible. I will rather draw attention to an important distinction that has hitherto been neglected. This distinction is between two uses to which trolley cases can be put, viz. the constructive use and the destructive use. I will argue that this differentiation is important, because some of the most powerful objections to the use of trolley cases apply only to their constructive use. Conclusions regarding the ultimate tenability of the methodic application of trolley cases may, hence, turn on assumptions as to how they are applied. I will start my talk with a discussion of the characteristics of trolley cases. Then, I will distinguish their constructive and destructive use. Finally, I will address arguments against trolley cases in light of this distinction.
150. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Madhumita Mitra A Pleasurable Life: J. S. Mill Re-visited
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The traditional interpretation of Mill’s ‘qualitative superiority of pleasure’ urges that pleasures can be qualitatively distinguished in terms of mental or intellectual pleasure on the one hand and physical or sensuous pleasure on the other. The traditional interpretation assumes that Mill, by introducing ‘qualitative dimension’ in his value theory, has stressed upon living a purely intellectual life, ignoring physical or sensuous life. On this understanding, Mill’s qualitative distinction between pleasures has frequently been exemplified as distinction between pleasure obtained from reading poetry, literature etc. and pleasure obtained from physical enjoyment. But, in this paper, I argue that the traditional interpretation actually suffers from a conceptual error. As a result, such interpretation has failed to capture the real essence of the qualitative distinction made by Mill and consequently, his view has been misrepresented through all such examples. Mill’s view can be appropriately understood only in the light of his broad utilitarian perspective.
151. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Malcolm Murray The Normativity Problem for Rational Reductions of Morality
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My goal in this paper is to point out that whatever difficulty evolutionary reductions have in capturing the normativity essential to moral talk, rational reductions face the same problem. My paper is arranged in two parts. In the first, I distinguish between rational and evolutionary reductions of morality, and highlight the basic normativity problem for evolutionists1. In the second, I offer a tu quoque against rationalists.
152. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Robert Myers Reasons, Motives and Desires
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According to Michael Smith’s practicality requirement, if an agent judges that there is reason for her to f in circumstances C, then either she is motivated to f in C or she is practically irrational. As a number of critics have noted, however, it is far from clear that this is correct, for if an agent’s normative judgments have often proven unreliable before, or seem otherwise suspect now, it is not always clear what practical rationality demands of her. I therefore begin by proposing a friendly amendment to Smith’s requirement, one that makes it much easier to defend. I then go on to argue that this requirement is actually much harder to satisfy than Smith thinks it is, and in fact that there is good reason to doubt that it could be satisfied if desires were nothing more than the purely functional states that Smith claims they are.
153. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Ramkhok Raikhan Moral Reasoning: Rethinking Rawls’ and Sen’s Approaches to Justice
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The moral reasoning of Rawls tends to follow Kant in so far as Rawls assumes reason as the primary faculty which decides moral action of what to do and how to do it. By assuming reason as the primary faculty neglecting interests and inclinations which are not encompassed by the primary goods, Rawls searches for an impartial principles of justice to safeguard the priority of ‘right’ over ‘good’. While in Sen’s moral reasoning well-being takes the central place and somehow reason as a faculty is subsumed as an instrument of our wants. When wellbeing takes the primary attention in moral discourse it becomes difficult for Sen to evaluate and rank different alternatives, since wellbeing can be understood differently bsy different people and people value different lives. However, Rawls’ abstraction (as in the case of the hypothetical situation) from the actual situations of life seems to face theoretical as well as practical problems.
154. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Nadire Ozdemir Ethics and the Confidentiality Rule for Lawyers: Can Ethical Norms Be an Excuse for Breaching the Rule?
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The confidentiality rule ensures lawyers not to reveal their client’s confidence that has been learnt through their professions. However sometimes confidentiality can involve to hide serious dangers. This is a small field work that searches theoretical basement of morality-centered or law-centered lawyers. The research question of this study is “the role of ethics/ethical norms in the breach of the confidentiality rule between the lawyer and her client”. In order to understand this, I have specified three sub-topics: Ethics, dilemma and the perception of profession. What does it mean ethics for lawyers, how do they act in ethical dilemmas and on what grounds they are breaching or they would breach the confidentiality rule were the relevant questions for my research question.
155. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Alexander Shevchenko Overcoming Moral Minimalism
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The paper is a critical analysis of minimalistic interpretations of the notion of moral obligation. The main grounds and arguments for this interpretation are the liberal understanding of justice and priority of negative rights and obligations over positive ones. To move to a more expansive morality we need to change the balance between negative and positive obligations by reconsidering the status of general and positive obligations. However, raising the status of positive obligations (from special to general) immediately leads to the problem of “moral overburden”. One possible way to overcoming moral minimalism could be based on treating positive obligations as a correlate of a set of rights that cannot be ignored. An important qualification is that the recognition of the right to a resource (material or moral) does not automatically mean placing an obligation on all persons satisfying some eligibility criteria. Instead, it could lead to a moral division of labor when different people take on the responsibility to meet positive moral obligations to those with a legitimate “natural right”. An additional consequence is that this approach helps to cope with the “moral overburden” of a moral agent.
156. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Krishna M. Pathak Why Vegetarianism: An Argument for Animals’ Right to Life
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There is a teeth-biting debate between vegetarianism and non-vegetarianism on human obligations towards animals. Vegetarianism appeals for equal and ethical treatment for animals whereas non-vegetarianism simply denies any such treatments considering that animals do not have a sense of morality. Non-vegetarianism seems to be ignoring some obligatory duties towards animals and undermines ethical arguments for animal rights. It does not provide sound reason for why humans should deliberately kill animals, painlessly or with least harm, for their own sake. It also overlooks the world economic situation of global hunger in which the use of the total food resources and distribution in terms of nutrition would be much more equitable if everyone was a vegetarian. This paper argues against non-vegetarianism and defends vegetarianism by making a claim that we do have moral obligations of certain kinds towards animals same as we have moral obligations towards us in terms of natural right to survival.
157. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Ilektra Stampoulou Derrida on Justice: The à-venir and the Undeconstructible
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In the first part of “Force of Law”, Jacques Derrida has creatively linked and analyzed (among other) the concepts of law, justice, force and the à-venir. What is surprising though, and is argued below, is that for the first time he introduces an undeconstructible concept which he also identifies and equates with deconstruction: justice. The aim of this paper is to prove that Derrida has attempted in this way to lead his ethical theory towards a more positive direction and utter a demand for a justice “to come”, something which philosophically would grant the possibility of “improvementability” - if I am granted permission for the neologism - in a political level. Finally, the non-deconstructible and “to come” aspect and characteristic of justice are criticized in the paper, as they oppose in a peculiar way the very concept of différance -on which deconstructive theory rests- inherently threatening Derrida’s syllogism.
158. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Ashok Kumar Sinha, Neelima Sinha Geo-ethics: Nature and Principles
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Geosciences have been increasingly interested in ethics due to the challenges thrown by advancements of studies and researches in the area of geosciences towards global community. This results in the emergence of a new discipline during the last decade of 20th century named ‘Geo-Ethics’. The great task assigned to this discipline is to provide an ethical face to geosciences so that these may be maximum useful to global community. Although it is very difficult to define any growing discipline and that is the case with geo-ethics, this paper aims to discuss the nature and core principles of this emerging discipline, an amalgamation of geosciences and ethics. Geo-ethics, an application of a value-system in the area of studies and researches of geosciences, is a part of applied ethics. Its proposed principles are: Refrain from superstitions and supernatural affairs, Interconnectedness, Rationality, Non-rigidness and Coherence, Non-maleficence, Beneficence, Justice.
159. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Pandora Sifnioti “Experiments” in Ethics: The Burning Embryos
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A philosopher is typically linked to pure intellectual activity, aiming to give answers to epistemological, ontological, metaphysical or other abstract and theoretical questions. However, a fairly recent movement, under the name “experimental philosophy”, is calling for philosophers to “burn the armchair” and use methods from the social and cognitive sciences in order to interpret intuitions or even predict reactions under given circumstances. This paper recognizes the potential of “experimental” philosophy as a philosophical tool through ample historical examples, and applies it to the field of bioethics. More specifically, it tests people’s intuitions regarding three different versions of the ethical dilemma first expressed by George Annas: “In a burning clinic, we have the time to save a 5-year-old girl or a tray of 20 frozen embryos”. Using an online survey tool, 292 people answered 3 questions regarding the prioritization of a new born baby over 5 frozen embryos. In the first and “simplest” scenario, the respondent had to choose between saving the 5 frozen embryos or a newborn baby. In the second scenario, the newborn to be saved had only 5% chances to survive due to a serious illness, whereas in the third scenario, the newborn is healthy but the embryos belong to the respondent. The responses to all three scenarios verify the hypothesis of traditional philosophers who claim that the newborn will have priority over the embryos; however, the reasons for choosing the baby vary (feeling of pain, more advanced being, greater cost of loss for parents, closer emotional relationship with baby). The respondents, who chose the embryos in all three cases, followed Bentham’s utilitarian approach of saving five lives versus one. The statistical analysis showed no significant differences in responses due to gender, nationality or being a parent. These results do not provide answers for normative ethics and in most cases experimental philosophy cannot stand alone, but the data can be the basis for further philosophical explorations.
160. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 12
Stan van Hooft Two Concepts of Virtue Ethics
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This paper describes two concepts of virtue ethics. The first is tied to modern moral theory in that it is concerned to present a new way of deciding which actions are right and wrong. It depends on a conception of moral realism which sees the rightness of an action as an objective feature of it and on metaphysics of subjectivity that sees the self as a rational and self-aware deliberator. The second, contrasting conception of virtue ethics derives from Aristotle and focuses on the character of the agent. It relies on an expression theory of action and on a concept of normativity which is more akin to standards of honor and appropriateness than to the standard of moral rightness.