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COMPETITION AND HARMONYThis essay draws on the limitations of materialistic naturalism and ethical aspects attempted by Kato Hiroyuki in the 19th century Japan. In order to overcome the crisis of Western entry into East Asia in the 19th century, Kato Hiroyuki argued that Japan must achieve the development of a modern country through 'Harmony between People'. He studied Western state theory, especially through Bluntschli's political science and state theory, and criticized the Western state theory based on social contracts or natural rights as having an unproven metaphysical basis and insisted on the validity of the naturalist state theory which sees the state as an organism. However, when Kato realized that the organism state theory evolving through competition could harm the 'harmony between people' of the modern Japan, he argued that true evolution could only be possible through competition for harmony of community. In the end, he failed to overcome anti-metaphysical metaphysics called ‘materialistic naturalism’, as the Western social contract theory or natural rights theory he criticized.
THE POSSIBILITY OF ETHICAL BUSINESSAs the business activity is an integral part of our social life, building an ethical society must include, among others, ensuring the ethical conduct of this activity. The concept of ethical business, however, has always been controversial especially in light of the alleged incompatibility of the profit motive with the motive of benevolence. Accordingly, it is thought that the profit motive is essentially selfish which thereby contradicts the selfless motive of benevolence. A standard strategy for reconciling these two motives takes the profit motive as a means to perform benevolent acts, which, however, only separates the business act from the ethical one. This essay advances an alternative strategy in which said motives occur simultaneously as motives for performing the same act. After demonstrating its possibility through a case involving General Motors, the essay shows how this strategy can be ethically justified using the Kantian moral principle of respect for persons.
CREATING ETHICAL SOCIETIES IN A CONCENTRATIONARY UNIVERSEThis essay argues that Simone Weil’s writings suggest a phenomenological method of particular relevance to investigating ethical questions. It begins by presenting evidence that although Weil does not mention phenomenology explicitly, she thinks about ethics in a phenomenological manner. Subsequent sections outline a “phenomenological ethics” derived from Weil’s notion of attention and her hermeneutics of ‘reading’ the world. Since attention sets aside the self and its personal world, this allows for an ethics of self-abdication (decreation) relatively free of influence by the forces of domination. David Rousset’s term “concentrationary universe” is introduced to describe the claim, argued by Hannah Arendt, Giorgio Agamben, and others, that present-day societies show evidence of an increasing reliance on ways of thinking derived from the Nazi concentration camps. Examples are given of applications of Weil’s phenomenological method to the problem of how to recognize signs of potential domination in a concentrationary universe.
MORAL CULTIVATION BY WU KANGZHAIWu Kangzhai, an educator in Ming Dynasty of China (AD 1368-1644), expressed his philosophical thoughts through various literary forms such as poetry and journal. An analysis of his works shows that his moral cultivation in different periods reflected his wisdom and sensitivity. However, his theory of moral cultivation and the ‘heart-mind’ duality has been given little to no due attention within the academia. Most scholars regard Wu Kangzai as a scholar of ‘learning of the principle’ rather than a scholar of ‘learning of the heart’. His learning and understanding about ‘heart-mind’ duality may have manifested in his progress of moral practice. This study aims to show Wu’s important role in encouraging learning of the ‘heart-mind’ by Chen Baisha and Wang Yangming. Wu Kangzhai’s learning of the ‘heart-mind’ duality was not only enlightenment and guidance for Wang Yangming’s theory, but also inspired literary schools in Ming Dynasty such as the Tang-Song school, the Gongan school, and later the Ming prose. His observation of self-cultivation and subtle inspection of moral development over the years, parallels the sentimentalism and spiritual writing in the middle and later Ming Dynasty literary works.
Factors associated with discriminatory attitudes towards people living with HIV among adult population in Ethiopia: analysis on Ethiopian demographic and health surveyExtensive discriminatory attitudes in a population can affect people’s willingness to be tested for Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), their initiation of antiretroviral therapy, social support as well as the quality of life of people infected with HIV. This study aimed to assess factors associated with discriminatory attitudes towards people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA). Secondary data analysis was conducted using data from the 2016 Ethiopia Demographic Health Survey. A total of 26,623 adult populations were included. Multivariable logistic regression analysis was conducted to identify factors associated with discriminatory attitudes. The proportion of participants having discriminatory attitudes towards PLWHA was 93.8% among men and 64.5% among women. This study revealed that rural residence, no formal education, lack of media access, not previously tested for HIV and lack of comprehensive HIV knowledge increase the odds of having discriminatory attitudes. In conclusion, there is a high-level discriminatory attitude towards PLWHA. Improvement in HIV-related knowledge and dealing with wrong perceptions and myths are extremely vital to reduce discriminatory attitudes towards HIV-infected people. Information, education and communication programmes need to intensify its educational campaigns to dispel these misconceptions.