Inside Ethics: On the Demands of Moral Thought

Inside Ethics: On the Demands of Moral Thought

by Alice Crary

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Alice Crary's Inside Ethics is a transformative account of moral thought about human beings and animals.

We have come to think of human beings and animals as elements of a morally indifferent reality that reveals itself only to neutral or science-based methods. This little-commented-on trend, which shapes the work of moral philosophers and popular ethical writers alike, has pernicious effects, distorting our understanding of the difficulty of moral thinking. Inside Ethics traces the roots of existing views to tendencies in ethics, metaphysics, and philosophy of mind. Crary underlines the moral urgency of revisiting our approach in ethics so that, instead of assuming we confront a world that itself places no demands on moral imagination, we treat the exercise of moral imagination as necessary for arriving at an adequate world-guided understanding of human beings and animals.

The book's argument is both rich and practically oriented, integrating ideas from literary authors such as Raymond Carver, J. M. Coetzee, Daniel Keyes, W. G. Sebald, and Leo Tolstoy and bringing them to bear on issues in disability studies and animal studies as well as elsewhere in ethics. The result is a commanding case for a reorientation in ethics that illuminates central challenges of moral thought about human and animal lives, directing attention to important aspects of these lives that are otherwise hidden from view.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780674967816
Publisher: Harvard
Publication date: 01/05/2016
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 1,159,603
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Alice Crary is Associate Professor of Philosophy at The New School for Social Research.

Table of Contents

Preface ix

Introduction 1

1 Outside Ethics: Tracing a Trend in Contemporary Moral Philosophy 10

2 The Moral Dimension of Mind: Philosophy of Psychology as a Guide to Ethics 36

3 More on Animal Minds: Dogs and Concepts 92

4 All Human Beings and Animals Are Inside Ethics: Reflections on Cognitive Disability and the Dead 121

5 A Couple of Competing Views: Foot's Ethical Naturalism and Wolfe's Posthumanism 165

6 Extending the Argument: Literary Accounts of Moral Kinship between Humans and Animals 203

7 Two Issues in Ethics: Eating Animals and Experimenting on Them 255

Concluding Comment 272

Acknowledgments 275

Epigraph Credits 277

Index 279

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