The Risk of Being: What It Means to Be Good and Bad / Edition 1

The Risk of Being: What It Means to Be Good and Bad / Edition 1

by Michael Gelven
     
 

ISBN-10: 0271017082

ISBN-13: 9780271017082

Pub. Date: 09/26/1997

Publisher: Penn State University Press

The Risk of Being attempts to forge a new language and a new way of reasoning about what it is like to be good and bad by focusing on existential phenomena that reveal what it means to be good and bad. It is thus a work that cannot be located among or compared to the more traditional theories of ethics or morality. What distinguishes this inquiry is not only the use…  See more details below

Overview

The Risk of Being attempts to forge a new language and a new way of reasoning about what it is like to be good and bad by focusing on existential phenomena that reveal what it means to be good and bad. It is thus a work that cannot be located among or compared to the more traditional theories of ethics or morality. What distinguishes this inquiry is not only the use of existential themes, such as outrage, temptation, and corruption, but the reasoning itself in an existential critique, which allows us to consider how and what we think as well as feel about being good and bad-the logos and pathos of these existential phenomena-and thus provides an access to the question about the reality of good and bad.
Recognizing that we have done wrong may induce frustrated responses, such as, "How could I have been so stupid?" or "Why was I so weak? " or even, "What has become of me? " These reactions, Gelven argues, point to folly, weakness, and corruption as ways of being bad, which can then be countered in phenomena such as judgment, courage, and integrity of character, as ways of being good. The analyses of these phenomena can reveal a great deal of existential understanding that no mere ethical or moral approach can offer. The emphasis is on understanding that "good" and "bad" are not mere axiological terms, but can refer to ways of existing.
By careful analysis, these ways can be forced to reveal the truth about goodness and badness. As Gelven's argument proceeds to show not only what it is "like" to be good and bad, but also what the reality of being good and bad must be, he offers new and often unorthodox insights into one of the great philosophical issues challenging the thinking mind.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780271017082
Publisher:
Penn State University Press
Publication date:
09/26/1997
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
182
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.63(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Pt. 1Locating the question1
Prelude: Raising the Question3
1Provoking Phenomena12
Pt. 2What it Means to be Bad23
2The Three Ways to Be Bad25
3The Foolish and the Silly40
4Temptation49
5Corruption61
6Punishment and Forgiveness68
7Can the Good Do What Is Bad? (Transition)76
Pt. 3What It Means to be Good93
8The First Way of Being Good: Judgment95
9The Second Way of Being Good: Moral Strength104
10The Most Troubling Moral Judgment (Transition)114
11The Third Way of Being Good: Character121
Pt. 4Confronting the Good129
12The Pathos of Being Good131
13The Logos of Being Good144
14The Reality of Being Good156

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