Shafer-Landau and Korsgaard Essay

Shafer-Landau and Korsgaard Essay

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Humanity is taught to be moral, to do good and avoid evil. However those lessons become foolish when we ask what is morality, the thing that we are told to achieve. For many morality is doing what is good and doing good is moral. This roundabout answer may be satisfactory to some that only look at the surface of the issue, however once the digging begins the grad question of morality comes into question. While this question has been looked an infinite number of times without being universally solved certain patterns have been made in the conclusions great thinkers and scholars come to regarding morality. One of these particular ideas involves a rationalist perspective that rationality defines morality or that moral failings imply rational failings. This concept is supported by Shafer-Landau and Korsgaard while thinkers like Williams and Foot disagree with such a claim. It should be understood that morality and rationality are intertwined were a moral failing correlates with a rational failing.
Rush Shafer-Landau believes that to act morally is to act rationally due to his core belief involving moral desire and duty. He believes that an individual’s moral obligations endorse reasons for actions that fallow that particular moral need. Therefor an individual has reason to do what is moral.( Shafer-Landau, 2007). Many of the argument used to support his ideas involve real world application and thought experiments. When he states “When we deem someone’s behaviour morally unjustified, we imply that he has violated a standard of appropriate conduct. Suppose such standards did not by themselves supply reasons for action. Then we would be forced to allow that though some actions are unjustified, immoral, improper, illegitimate, or inapprop...


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... a topic and question that must be faced by a variety of viewpoints.



Works Cited

Joyce, Richard. "The Myth of Morality." Foundations of Ethics. Ed. Russ Shafer-Landau and Terence Cuneo. Malden: Blackwell, 2007. 23-34. Print.

Foot, Philippa. "Morality as a System of Hypothetical Imperatives." Foundations of Ethics. Ed. Russ Shafer-Landau and Terence Cuneo. Malden: Blackwell, 2007. 286-291. Print.

Williams, Bernard. "Internal and External Reasons." Foundations of Ethics. Ed. Russ Shafer-Landau and Terence Cuneo. Malden: Blackwell, 2007. 292-298. Print.

Korsgaard, Christine. "Skepticism about Practical Reason." Foundations of Ethics. Ed. Russ Shafer-Landau and Terence Cuneo. Malden: Blackwell, 2007. 299-311. Print.

Shafer-Landau, Russ. "Moral Reasons." Foundations of Ethics. Ed. Russ Shafer-Landau and Terence Cuneo. Malden: Blackwell, 2007. 312-327. Print.

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