ISBN-10:
1589016920
ISBN-13:
9781589016927
Pub. Date:
Publisher:
Ethics in Light of Childhood

Ethics in Light of Childhood

by John Wall

Paperback(New Edition)

$34.95
View All Available Formats & Editions
Choose Expedited Shipping at checkout for delivery by Tuesday, September 28

Overview

Children make up one third of all humanity. Yet too often children are perceived as merely undeveloped adults, pre-moral and innocent, remaining marginalized figures in our ethical landscape. Across diverse societies and cultures, throughout history and today, serious questions about being human and about moral behavior are almost always understood from the perspective of adulthood. Ethicist John Wall proposes a Copernican shift, contending that considerations of childhood should not only have greater importance on our ethical lives but that they should fundamentally transform how morality is understood and practiced. The experiences of children, Wall argues, should become new lenses for interpreting what it means to exist, to live good lives, and to form just communities--much in the same way that feminism legitimizes the experiences of women for the benefit of all humankind. In Part 1 Wall examines traditional Western assumptions about children that continue, for good and for ill, to ground ethical life today. Part II constructs a more fully child-responsive moral theory, using the strengths and weaknesses or our inherited historical perspectives. Part III further refines this ethical vision by considering three specific areas of social practice: human rights, family life, and ethical thinking. In each case, the point of view of childhood is shown to expand what it means to be human in social relations. This is the meaning of ethics in light of childhood: not to dismiss or minimize adult experiences of the moral life, but to widen them to include considerations of children.


Related collections and offers

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781589016927
Publisher: Georgetown University Press
Publication date: 08/12/2010
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 216
Sales rank: 976,567
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

John Wall is an associate professor of religion, with a joint appointment in childhood studies, at Rutgers University. He is the author of Moral Creativity, and coeditor of Paul Ricoeur and Contemporary Moral Thought and Marriage, Health and the Professions, as well as the forthcoming Children and Armed Conflict. He was also the coeditor of a nine-volume book series, Religion, Marriage, and Family.

Table of Contents

Introduction

Part I. History

1. Three Enduring Models

Part II. Theory

2. What is Human Being?

3. What Is the Ethical Aim?

4. What Is Owed Each Other?

Part III. Practice

5. Human Rights in Light of Childhood

6. The Generative Family

7. The Art of Ethical Thinking

Conclusion

Notes

Index

What People are Saying About This

Barbara Woodhouse

This wonderful book takes the study of childhood and of ethics to a new and transformative level. Animating ethical theory with stories drawn from real children's lives, Wall calls for a fundamental restructuring of ethical thinking. It is essential reading for anyone who thinks deeply about children.

From the Publisher

"This is not just a book about children and ethics. This book revolutionizes the very way ethics is done. With probing insight and close attention to social practice, John Wall rescues children from their usual place as the 'most systematically excluded group on the planet' and moves them to the center of moral deliberation. This book should be required reading for ethicists and all those who care about sustaining the good life and a just society."—Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore, E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor of Pastoral Theology, Vanderbilt University Divinity School and Graduate Department of Religion

"Could viewing moral issues from the perspective of children create a revolution in philosophical and religious ethics? This beautifully written book brilliantly argues that it will. Get ready for a new paradigm in ethics that author John Wall calls 'childism.' It may be as exciting for ethics as feminism was thirty years ago and be central to moral debates for decades to come."—Don Browning, professor emeritus, Department of Religious Ethics, University of Chicago, and author of Reviving Religious Humanism

"This wonderful book takes the study of childhood and of ethics to a new and transformative level. Animating ethical theory with stories drawn from real children's lives, Wall calls for a fundamental restructuring of ethical thinking. It is essential reading for anyone who thinks deeply about children. "—Barbara Woodhouse, L. Q. C. Lamar Chair in Law and co-director, Barton Child Law and Policy Clinic, Emory University

Don Browning

Could viewing moral issues from the perspective of children create a revolution in philosophical and religious ethics? This beautifully written book brilliantly argues that it will. Get ready for a new paradigm in ethics that author John Wall calls 'childism.' It may be as exciting for ethics as feminism was thirty years ago and be central to moral debates for decades to come.

Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore

This is not just a book about children and ethics. This book revolutionizes the very way ethics is done. With probing insight and close attention to social practice, John Wall rescues children from their usual place as the 'most systematically excluded group on the planet' and moves them to the center of moral deliberation. This book should be required reading for ethicists and all those who care about sustaining the good life and a just society.

Customer Reviews