This is the definitive companion to the study of ethics. It provides students with an accessible, comprehensive and philosophically rigorous introduction to the major thinkers, issues and debates. Ideal for use on undergraduate courses, but also of lasting value for postgraduate students, the structure and content of this textbook closely reflect the way ethics is studied. Thematically structured, the text provides a historical overview of the subject and a comprehensive introduction to the main branches of ethics: meta-ethics, normative ethics and applied ethics. The book also includes coverage of key aspects of value-theory and key issues concerning agency and moral responsibility. It applies ethics to contemporary issues such as climate change, the environment, development, poverty and war. Crucially, the book encourages students to do ethics for themselves, equipping the reader with a wide-ranging grasp of the discipline in all its central areas of contemporary study and reflection.
Robin Attfield's cogent and thorough analysis is supplemented by student-friendly features, including chapter summaries, study questions, exercises, and a comprehensive guide to further reading and other resources.
Robin Attfield is Professor of Philosophy at Cardiff University, UK. His recent publications include Creation, Evolution and Meaning (Ashgate, 2006), Environmental Ethics: An Overview for the 21st Century (Polity, 2003) and The Ethics of the Global Environment (EUP, 1999).
1. History of Ethics; i. Aristotle; ii. Hume and Hobbes; iii. Kant; iv. Mill; 2. Value-theory and the Good Life; i. Pleasure, Happiness and Flourishing; ii. Value and Intrinsic Value; iii. Worthwhile Life and Meaningful Work; iv. The Good Life, Virtue and Morality; 3. Normative Ethics; i. Moral Standing and its Scope; ii. More About Intrinsic Value; iii. Consequentialism; iv. Deontology; v. Virtue Ethics; vi. Practice-consequentialism and Virtue-consequentialism; 4. Applied Ethics; i. The Re-emergence of Applied Ethics; ii. Medical Ethics; iii. Environmental Ethics; iv. Animal Ethics; v. Ethics of War; vi. Ethics of Development; 5. Meta-Ethics; i. Non-cognitivism, Projectivism and Prescriptivism; ii. 'Good' and 'Ought'; iii. Cognitivism and Realism; iv. Naturalism and Non-naturalism; v. Internalism and Externalism; vi. Bearing of Meta-Ethics on Normative Ethics; 6. Responsibility and Free Will; i. Responsibility, 'Ought' and 'Can'; ii. Compatibilism; iii. Incompatibilism; iv. Indeterminism; Further Reading; Index.