Philosophers who defend perfectionist accounts of the human good and then go on to develop political theories tend to favor political institutions that promote that view of the good. In other words, political philosophers tend to be perfectionists all the way down, or not at all. Douglas Den Uyl and Douglas Rasmussen are an exception to this rule. In an earlier work, they argued for a neo-Aristotelian perfectionist foundation for political liberalism. Den Uyl and Rasmussen cast ethical theorizing as proceeding from a choice between two "templates" which they also refer to as "orientations" and "frameworks" : a template of respect, and a template of responsibility.
These templates "provide the central or orienting characteristics of the problem, and thereby guide one in reaching the kinds of answers likely to be acceptable" 3. The template of respect takes the chief concern of ethics to be the development of norms of conduct to facilitate our living with one another. On the authors' telling, this template is home to Kantian and utilitarian moral theories. The template of responsibility, on the other hand, treats as fundamental the "existential fact that we must make something of our lives" 2.
Perfectionism in Moral and Political Philosophy
Den Uyl and Rasmussen's individualistic perfectionism falls under this latter template. The book has two parts. Part I introduces the basic details of individualistic perfectionism, and uses the resources of the theory to justify Den Uyl and Rasmussen's separation of ethics and politics into distinct domains. Part II further develops and defends individualistic perfectionism. There, the authors work out their metaethics of virtue and use constructivism as a foil for presenting some strengths of their theory.
Den Uyl and Rasmussen's individualistic perfectionism, like many other perfectionist theories, identifies the good for human beings with the development or flourishing of natural human capacities, or human nature. Their view is distinctive for the particular combination of properties it assigns to the human good. On individualistic perfectionism, the good is agent-relative i.
Their account of flourishing is inclusive, in that human flourishing is conceived of as a final end that comprises all human goods.
Flourishing is highly individualized: "the concrete character of human flourishing is dependent on who one is as well as what one is" 41, emphasis in original. Critically, flourishing requires self-direction, and cannot simply be imposed from without. Human flourishing is also social -- only attainable by living with and among other people. And finally, though their conception of the good is plural, complex, and fine-grained to the circumstances of individual persons, it is objective.
Most Downloaded Articles
It is possible for a person to be mistaken about what is good for her. Owing to its emphasis on individuality, Den Uyl and Rasmussen's perfectionism can yield only a very limited set of universal ethical guidelines. Since we are each subject to widely varying sets of practical reasons corresponding to our highly individuated, agent-relative goods, it is impossible to get an ambitious juridical model of morality off the ground. Their theory can, however, recognize the possibility of "metanorms" -- norms that "regulate the conditions under which moral conduct may take place" Here the presence of self-directedness in their theory of the good is crucial, as metanorms are chiefly concerned with preserving the possibility of self-direction.
But there are no more demanding metanorms that would require people to take an active role in promoting the flourishing of others. The authors use the idea of rules in a game to draw a fine distinction between "guiding" conduct and "regulating" conduct to make the role of metanorms in human conduct clearer. A baseball player who follows all the rules of that game is playing correctly in some limited sense, but, from the fact that he allows his play to be regulated by the rules, it does not follow that he is playing well. But that is no shortcoming in the rules of baseball, because, like metanorms, they do nothing more than set the side constraints for the quality of play that actually makes one a good baseball player.
It is no part of the rules of baseball to guide players as they take their swings. Now, among baseball fans, there are those who fetishize "playing the game the right way," praising as good players those they see as acting professionally despite, e. But of course, comments like those represent a blighted view of what makes a player good at baseball. From the perspective of the template of responsibility, many contemporary political philosophers are making an analogous mistake about the relationship between morality and politics.
They think that the rules of a political order must naturally reflect and promote the correct account of human flourishing. But short of the limited role of metanorms in regulating, rather than guiding, conduct, politics is not an extension of ethics.
In Den Uyl and Rasmussen's system, metanorms are the basis of a thin link between ethics and politics, since they think of liberalism as the political expression of metanorms protecting self-direction. You can go to cart and save for later there. Average rating: 0 out of 5 stars, based on 0 reviews Write a review.
- Making Room for Business Ethics: Rights as Metanorms for Market and Moral Values | SpringerLink;
- Your Child’s Social and Emotional Well-Being: A Complete Guide for Parents and Those Who Help Them.
- Reading Rasmussen and Den Uyl : Critical Essays on Norms of Liberty - renlisemisch.tk.
- In this Book;
- Dialectic of the Ladder: Wittgenstein, the Tractatus and Modernism?
Sue Collins. Walmart Tell us if something is incorrect. Out of stock. Get In-Stock Alert. Delivery not available. Pickup not available. Reading Rasmussen and Den Uyl is a collection of interpretive and critical essays by philosophers and political scientists which explores central themes in liberalism and its ethical and metaphysical grounding. The volume contains a reply essay by Rasmussen and Den Uyl. About This Item We aim to show you accurate product information. Manufacturers, suppliers and others provide what you see here, and we have not verified it.
See our disclaimer.
- Protecting Information: From Classical Error Correction to Quantum Cryptography.
- The Thomist: A Speculative Quarterly Review.
- Norms of Liberty: A Perfectionist Basis for Non-perfectionist Politics.
Douglas B. Rasmussen and Douglas J.
Reading Rasmussen and Den Uyl: Critical Essays on Norms of Liberty -
The book offers a neo-Aristotelian ethic of human flourishing as a basis for a liberal conception of human rights. This companion volume, an interpretive and critical reader, features essays from both philosophers and political scientists, as well as an omnibus reply by Rasmussen and Den Uyl. Norms of Liberty makes challenging arguments about key issues, which makes a multi-disciplinary reader a valuable asset for both students and scholars.
Reading Rasmussen and Den Uyl is designed both to explicate the book's arguments and to explore possible objections. Customer Reviews. Write a review. See any care plans, options and policies that may be associated with this product.
Related Norms Of Liberty: A Perfectionist Basis For Non-Perfectionist Politics
Copyright 2019 - All Right Reserved