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Rationality and the Ideology of Disconnection
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  • Page extent: 238 pages
  • Size: 228 x 152 mm
  • Weight: 0.468 kg

Library of Congress

  • Dewey number: 302/.13
  • Dewey version: 22
  • LC Classification: HM495 .T38 2006
  • LC Subject headings:
    • Rational choice theory
    • Social choice
    • Social ethics
    • Human ecology

Library of Congress Record

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 (ISBN-13: 9780521867450 | ISBN-10: 0521867452)

DOI: 10.2277/0521867452

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 (Stock level updated: 17:01 GMT, 27 November 2015)


A powerful and provocative critique of the foundations of Rational Choice theory and the economic way of thinking about the world, written by a former leading practitioner. The target is a dehumanizing ideology that cannot properly recognize that normal people have attachments and commitments to other people and to practices, projects, principles, and places, which provide them with desire-independent reasons for action, and that they are reflective creatures who think about what they are and what they should be, with ideals that can shape and structure the way they see their choices. The author's views are brought to bear on the economic way of thinking about the natural environment and on how and when the norm of fair reciprocity motivates us to do our part in cooperative endeavors. Throughout, the argument is adorned by thought-provoking examples that keep what is at stake clearly before the reader's mind.

• Richly informed insider's critique • Unusual interweaving of theoretical analysis and thought provoking examples • A powerful polemic, passionately written, against a highly influential dehumanizing ideology


Part I. Attachments, Reasons, and Desires: 1. Attachments: five stories; 2. Narratives, identities, rationality; Part II. Strokes of Havoc: The Market Ideal and the Disintegration of Lives, Places, and Ecosystems: 3. The market Utopia; 4. Dis-integration; Part III. Living in Unity, Doing your Part: Rationality, Recognition, and Reciprocity: 5. Introduction: doing your part; 6. The rationality of reciprocity; 7. Normativity, recognition, and moral motivation; 8. Citizens and workers: the argument illustrated.

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