Justification and Application: Remarks on Discourse Ethics

Paperback | September 29, 1994

byJürgen HabermasTranslated byCiaran P. Cronin

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This collection of four essays and an interview contains Habermas's most recent contributions to ethical theory. It expands and clarifies the work on discourse ethics presented in Moral Consciousness and Communicative Action. Here, largely in response to criticisms from contemporary neo-Aristotelians, Habermas underscores the claim of discourse ethics to a preeminent position in contemporary moral philosophy with incisive analyses and refinements of the central concepts of his theory that include important developments in his treatment of practical reason and of the problems of application and motivation.The first essay offers a comprehensive analysis of practical rationality, which establishes a clear demarcation between pragmatic, ethical, and moral questions and a corresponding differentiation between forms of volition and spheres of practical discourse. The centerpiece of the book is a multifaceted defense of the central claims of discourse ethics incorporating masterly critiques of the major competing positions, including those of John Rawls, Bernard Williams, Charles Taylor, Alasdair MacIntyre, Karl-Otto Apel, and Albrecht WellmerThe middle essays defend the basic intention of universalist moral theory in the face of the claims of the neo-Aristotelian ethics of the good and Horkheimer's skepticism toward reason that led him to embrace a religiously inspired ethic of compassion. An interview with Habermas covering such topics as the genesis of discourse ethics, the precise import of some of its more controversial elements, and its interconnections with the theory of communicative actions concludes this important collection.Jürgen Habermas is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Frankfurt.

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From Our Editors

This long-awaited book sets out the implications of Habermas's theory of communicative action for moral theory. 'Discourse ethics' attempts to reconstruct a moral point of view from which normative claims can be imperative with a procedure of justification based on reasoned agreement among participants in practical discourse.

From the Publisher

This collection of four essays and an interview contains Habermas's most recent contributions to ethical theory. It expands and clarifies the work on discourse ethics presented in Moral Consciousness and Communicative Action. Here, largely in response to criticisms from contemporary neo-Aristotelians, Habermas underscores the claim of ...

From the Jacket

This long-awaited book sets out the implications of Habermas's theory of communicative action for moral theory. 'Discourse ethics' attempts to reconstruct a moral point of view from which normative claims can be imperative with a procedure of justification based on reasoned agreement among participants in practical discourse.

Jürgen Habermas is Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at the University of Frankfurt and Professor of Philosophy at Northwestern University. He was recently awarded the 2004 Kyoto Prize for Arts and Philosophy by the Inamori Foundation. The Kyoto Prize is an international award to honor those who have contributed significantly to the ...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:229 pages, 8.9 × 5.8 × 0.7 inPublished:September 29, 1994Publisher:The MIT Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0262581361

ISBN - 13:9780262581363

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From Our Editors

This long-awaited book sets out the implications of Habermas's theory of communicative action for moral theory. 'Discourse ethics' attempts to reconstruct a moral point of view from which normative claims can be imperative with a procedure of justification based on reasoned agreement among participants in practical discourse.