Ethics in the Conflicts of Modernity: An Essay on Desire, Practical Reasoning, and Narrative
by MacIntyre, Alasdair (2016)
Alasdair MacIntyre explores some central philosophical, political and moral claims of modernity and argues that a proper understanding of human goods requires a rejection of these claims. In a wide-ranging discussion, he considers how normative and evaluative judgments are to be understood, how desire and practical reasoning are to be characterized, what it is to have adequate self-knowledge, and what part narrative plays in our understanding of human lives. He asks, further, what it would be to understand the modern condition from a neo-Aristotelian or Thomistic perspective, and argues that Thomistic Aristotelianism, informed by Marx's insights, provides us with resources for constructing a contemporary politics and ethics which both enable and require us to act against modernity from within modernity. This rich and important book builds on and advances MacIntyre's thinking in ethics and moral philosophy, and will be of great interest to readers in both fields.
The discovery that those who pursue common goods [including in the workplace qua productive worker] must have made, if they are to act as they do, is that it is only through directing themselves toward the achievement of common goods that they are able to direct themselves toward the achievement of their own good qua individual….Institutions, families, schools and workplaces will be understood as sometimes obstacles to and sometimes means for achieving the satisfaction of those preferences. (p.175)
KeywordsDesire, Practical Reason, Aristotle, Neo-Aristotelian, Marx, Aquinas, Politics, Ethics, Self-Knowledge Moral Philosophy
ThemesEthics in the Conflicts of Modernity
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