The Impossibility of Perfection: Aristotle, Feminism, and the Complexities of Ethics
Most people think that the difficulty of balancing career and personal/family relationships is the fault of present-day society or is due to their own inadequacies. But in this major new book, eminent moral philosopher Michael Slote argues that the difficulty runs much deeper, that it is due to the essential nature of the divergent goods involved in this kind of choice. He shows more generally that perfect human happiness and perfect virtue are impossible in principle, a view originally enunciated by Isaiah Berlin, but much more thoroughly and synoptically defended here than ever before. Ancient Greek and modern-day Enlightenment thought typically assumed that perfection was possible, and this is also true of Romanticism and of most recent ethical theory. But if, as Slote maintains, imperfection is inevitable, then our inherited categories of virtue and personal good are far too limited and unqualified to allow us to understand and cope with the richer and more complex life that characterizes today's world. And The Impossibility of Perfection argues in particular that we need some new notions, new distinctions, and even new philosophical methods in order to distill some of the ethical insights of recent feminist thought and arrive at a fuller and more realistic picture of ethical phenomena.
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1 Feminism and Partial Values
2 The Impossibility of Perfection
3 Alternative Views
4 Perfection Moral Dilemmas and Moral Cost
5 Connections with Care Ethics and Romanticism
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The Impossibility of Perfection: Aristotle, Feminism, and the Complexities ...
No preview available - 2014
achievement and/or approach argued arguments Aristotelian Aristotle Aristotle’s assumptions autonomy Berlin thesis care ethics career career/creative chapter choice claim clash committed concepts criticism criticizable Derek Parfit deviant discussion doesn’t earlier entail ethical dependency ethicists Ethics of Care eudaimonism example extent fact female feminism feminist ethical frankness and tact friendship fulfillment gavagai gender gender-relative human idea of partial ideal important impossibility of perfection individual intracategorial intrapersonally intuitions involve Isaiah Berlin isn’t justice kind lacking least less male mentioned moral cost moral dilemmas Nel Noddings notion objective list one’s partial values partial virtues patriarchal people’s perfect happiness philosophical pleasure possible present book prudence question rabbit reason relationships relevant respect sadism and masochism Saul Kripke seems sexist sexual situation someone someone’s supposed tact and frankness talk theory things Thomas Kuhn thought traditional traditionally transpersonally depend transvalent unity thesis virtue ethics Watson women