×

Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date.

For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now.

A Refutation of Moral Relativism : Interviews with an Absolutist
     

A Refutation of Moral Relativism : Interviews with an Absolutist

5.0 1
by Peter Kreeft
 

No issue is more fateful for civilization than moral relativism. History knows not one example of a successful society which repudiated moral absolutes. Yet most attacks on relativism have been either pragmatic (looking at its social consequences) or exhorting (preaching rather than proving), and philosophers' arguments against it have been specialized, technical,

Overview

No issue is more fateful for civilization than moral relativism. History knows not one example of a successful society which repudiated moral absolutes. Yet most attacks on relativism have been either pragmatic (looking at its social consequences) or exhorting (preaching rather than proving), and philosophers' arguments against it have been specialized, technical, and scholarly.

In his typical unique writing style, Peter Kreeft lets an attractive, honest, and funny relativist interview a "Muslim fundamentalist" absolutist so as not to stack the dice personally for absolutism. In an engaging series of personal interviews, every conceivable argument the "sassy Black feminist" reporter Libby gives against absolutism is simply and clearly refuted, and none of the many arguments for moral absolutism is refuted.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The only boring aspect of this book is its title, which doesn't do justice to apologist Kreeft's intelligent, engaging dialogue between two fictional friends during a week of relaxation at Martha's Vineyard. Kreeft, philosophy professor at Boston College and author of more than 25 books, describes the absolutist character 'Isa as a Muslim fundamentalist from Palestine who teaches philosophy at the American University in Beirut. His interviewer and sparring partner is Libby Rawls, an African-American, liberal feminist journalist. Using a classic debate format, with impressive fairness to the opposite side, Kreeft defines relativism and its importance. Tracing relativism's evolution and history in Western philosophy, Kreeft notes that relativism is a fairly modern perspective, originating within the last few hundred years. He outlines the philosophical distinctions between it and absolutism with clarity and an integrity that will delight both the layperson and the professional philosopher. For Kreeft, relativism has eroded a collective and individual sense of accountability and contributed to social decay, yet he can see the other side, especially with regard to cross-cultural differences. Although the purpose of the book is to uphold absolutism, Kreeft outlines the relativist perspective in an approachable, respectful manner. By giving counterarguments a fighting chance, this becomes a book that may actually persuade people--not just preach to the absolutist choir. (Nov.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781681490182
Publisher:
Ignatius Press
Publication date:
04/19/2016
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Sales rank:
651,056
File size:
189 KB

Meet the Author

Peter Kreeft, Ph.D., Professor of Philosophy at Boston College, is one of the most widely read Christian authors of our time. His many bestselling books cover a vast array of topics in spirituality, theology, and philosophy. They include Practical TheologyBack to Virtue,Because God Is RealYou Can Understand the BibleAngels and DemonsHeaven: The Heart's Deepest Longing, and A Summa of the Summa.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Post to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews

Refutation of Moral Relativism: Interviews with an Absolutist 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Tunguz More than 1 year ago
Peter John Kreeft is a professor of philosophy at Boston College, a prolific writer and an engaging educator and public speaker. My first exposure to his writings came through his book A Shorter Summa: The Essential Philosophical Passages of Saint Thomas Aquinas' Summa Theologica, which was first systematic introduction to the writings of Saint Thomas Aquinas. Kreeft is definitely strongly influenced by Thomistic thought, and this "Refutation" reflects some of that, as the dedication too strongly implies. The book is structured as a series of dialogues between Libby Rawls, a prototypical modern liberal relativist, and `Isa Ben Adam, a stand-in for a philosophically well versed moral absolutist. Both of them are figments of Kreeft's imagination, and maybe even parts of his own divided personality. The dialogues are deliberately fashioned after Socratic dialogues, and they serve as a vehicle through which Kreeft crafts his arguments in favor of moral absolutism. I have had a chance to listen Kreeft give a lecture on this very topic, and based on that it would make sense to write the arguments in a form of dialogues. Kreeft is a very good public speaker and great at interacting with audience and thinking on his feet about even the most arcane topic. This is clearly reflected in the book as well, as some of potential intellectual minefields are avoided with masterful grace. Furthermore, it is quite unusual nowadays to come across a book written in a form of dialogue. The academic writing tends to be very technical and impersonal, and that sometimes detracts from otherwise a very interesting topic. However, reading a page after page of interpersonal argumentation can get overbearing after a while, especially if the give-and-take can be rather confrontational on an occasion. However, this is easily compensated by lucidity of the prose and cogency of arguments. If you have ever had to argue with a moral relativist, this would be an ideal book that can be used to refute most of their arguments. It is an exercise in absolutist apologetics.