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Utilitarianism as a Public Philosophy

Utilitarianism as a Public Philosophy

$116.00 (P)

Part of Cambridge Studies in Philosophy and Public Policy

  • Date Published: May 1995
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521462631

$ 116.00 (P)

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About the Authors
  • Robert E. Goodin, a philosopher with many books on political theory, public policy and applied ethics to his credit, defends utilitarianism against its critics and shows how it can be applied most effectively over a wide range of public policies. In discussions of such issues as paternalism, social welfare policy, international ethics, nuclear armaments, and international responses to the environment crisis, he demonstrates what a flexible tool his brand of utilitarianism can be in confronting the dilemmas of public policy in the real world.

    • Goodin is well-known writer in this field; he edits the Journal of Political Philosophy (Blackwell)
    • Lots of policy application of the theory from social welfare to environmental policy and tort liability
    • Interdisciplinary - philosophy, political science, law, and economics
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "...I think that much of Goodin's book can be enjoyed and appreciated as a discussion of important public policy issues without looking for it to resolve the more contentious question of the defensibility of utilitarianism over nonutilitariansim, even with respect to just its public policy applications." James P. Sterba, Ethics

    "...this book is notable for its optimism, detail, and scope." Samantha Brennan, Philosophy in Review

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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 1995
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521462631
    • length: 368 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 24 mm
    • weight: 0.71kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Introduction: Moral Bases of State Action:
    1. Utilitarianism as a public philosophy
    2. The state as a moral agent
    Part II. Morality, Public and Private:
    3. Do motives matter?
    4. Government house utilitarianism
    Part III. Shaping Private Conduct:
    5. Responsibilities
    6. Distributing credit and blame
    7. Apportioning responsibilities
    Part IV. Shaping Public Policies: Section A. Respecting and overriding preferences:
    8. Liberalism and the best-judge principle
    9. Laundering preferences
    10. Heroic measures and false hopes
    11. Theories of compensation
    Section B. Ensuring social security:
    12. Stabilising expectations
    13. Compensation and redistribution
    14. Basic income
    15. Relative needs
    C. International ethics
    16. What is so special about our fellow countrymen?
    17. Nuclear disarmament as a moral certainty
    18. International ethics and the environmental crisis

  • Author

    Robert E. Goodin, Australian National University, Canberra

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