Explaining Value: and Other Essays in Moral Philosophy, Gilbert Harman


Considers the following questions: What accounts for the existence of basic moral disagreements? Why do most people think it is worse to injure someone than to fail to save them from injury? Where does the right of self‐defence come from? Why do many people think it is morally permissible to treat animals in ways we would not treat people? Why are some people moral relativists and others not? What is it to value something and what is it to value something intrinsically? How are a person’s values (noun) related to what the person values (verb)? How much of morality can or should be explained in terms of human flourishing or the possession of virtuous character traits? For that matter, are there character traits of the sort we normally suppose there are? How do people come to be moral? Is morality something one learns or does it arise in everyone naturally without instruction?

Keywords: animals, bargaining, character, desire, ethics, flourishing, Gilbert Harman, justice, moral development, moral disagreement, moral relativism, morality, relativism, value, values, virtue ethics


Print publication date: 2000 Print ISBN-13: 9780198238041
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003 DOI:10.1093/0198238045.001.0001