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Is There a Right to Respect?

  • M. ORESTE FIOCCO (a1)
  • DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0953820812000180
  • Published online: 27 November 2012
Abstract

Many moral philosophers assume that a person is entitled to respect; this suggests that there is a right to respect. I argue, however, that there is no such right. There can be no right to respect because of what respect is, in conjunction with what a right demands and certain limitations of human agency. In this article, I first examine the nature and ontological basis of rights. I next consider the notion of respect in general; I adduce several varieties of respect, then present a primary distinction needed to discern the notion of respect relevant to the putative right. Then I propound the argument that there can be no right to respect and consider some means of challenging its conclusion. In closing, I trace some of the consequences of this argument and suggest how it might motivate a different approach to understanding our most basic obligations to one another.

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Utilitas
  • ISSN: 0953-8208
  • EISSN: 1741-6183
  • URL: /core/journals/utilitas
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