Reason in Action: Collected Essays Volume I

Paperback | October 19, 2013

byJohn Finnis

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Reason in Action collects John Finnis's work on the theory of practical reason and moral philosophy. The essays in the volume range from foundational issues of meta-ethics to the practical application of natural law theory to ethical problems such as nuclear deterrence, obscenity and freespeech, and abortion and cloning.Defending the objectivity of some evaluative and moral judgments, the volume's meta-ethical papers debate with figures as diverse as Jurgen Habermas, Bernard Williams, David Hume, Max Weber, and Christine Korsgaard, and offer a new understanding of Wittgenstein's On Certainty. Further papers engagewith Philippa Foot, Geoffrey Warnock, Leo Strauss, Terence Irwin, Matthew Kramer, neo-scholastic interpreters of Aquinas, utilitarians, game theorists, and Immanuel Kant on the shape of moral thought. John Rawls's conception of public reason, J.S. Mill's understanding of free speech, and JacquesMaritain's appeal to "connatural" knowledge are critically contested. Foundational questions addressed in the volume include: how legal reasoning differs from general practical reasoning; how aesthetic appreciation differs from erotic attraction; how subrational elements enter into the rationalstandard of fairness; how virtues depend upon principles and norms; and how incommensurabilities count in moral thought.These essays mark the development of Finnis's new classical theory of natural law, engaged with contemporary thinkers and problems. Several essays, including two previously unpublished, show the theory's emergence before Natural Law and Natural Rights. Other unpublished essays include a discussionof pornography, an analysis of freedom of speech, and a substantive introduction reflecting on the theory, its reception, and the convergence on it of capabilities theorists such as Amartya Sen and Martha Nussbaum.

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Reason in Action collects John Finnis's work on the theory of practical reason and moral philosophy. The essays in the volume range from foundational issues of meta-ethics to the practical application of natural law theory to ethical problems such as nuclear deterrence, obscenity and freespeech, and abortion and cloning.Defending the o...

John Finnis is Professor of Law and Legal Philosophy at the University of Oxford, and a Fellow of University College. He is the Biolchini Family Professor of Law at the University of Notre Dame.

other books by John Finnis

Natural Law and Natural Rights
Natural Law and Natural Rights

Paperback|May 7 2011

$50.80 online$54.95list price(save 7%)
see all books by John Finnis
Format:PaperbackDimensions:384 pagesPublished:October 19, 2013Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199689946

ISBN - 13:9780199689941

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Table of Contents

IntroductionFoundations1. Practical Reason's Foundations2. Discourse, Truth, and Friendship3. Scepticism's Self-Refutation4. Self-refutation Revisited5. Bernard Williams on Truth's Values6. Reason, Authority, and Friendship7. Reason, Universality, and Moral Thought8. Objectivity and Content in Ethics9. Is and Ought in AquinasBuilding on the Foundations10. Action's Most Ultimate End11. Prudence about Ends12. Moral Absolutes in Aristotle and Aquinas13. "Natural Law"14. Legal Reasoning as Practical ReasonPublic Reason and Unreason15. Commensuration and Public Reason16. "Public Reason" and Moral Debate17. Reason, Passions, and Free Speech18. Freedom of Speech19. Pornography