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A Short Introduction to Ethics
nihilism dog ethics. Whether it is a matter of giving to charity, or sticking to
duty, or insisting on our rights, we can be confused, or be paralysed by the fear
that our principles are groundless. Many are afraid that in a Godless world science
has unmasked us as creatures fated by our genes to be selfish and tribalistic, or
competitive and aggressive. Simon Blackburn, author of the best-sellingThink,
structures this short introduction around these and other threats to ethics.
Confronting seven different objections to our self-image as moral, well-behaved
creatures, he charts a course through the philosophical quicksands that often engulf
us. Then, turning to problems of life and death, he showshow we should think about
the meaning of life, and how we should mistrust the sound-bite sized absolutes that
often dominate moral debates. Finally he offers a critical tour of the ways the
philosophical tradition has tried to provide foundations for ethics, from Plato and
Aristotle through to contemporary debates.
172 pages; ISBN 9780191647314
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