Duties and Virtues

Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement , Volume 35, PP. 107-120.

By Onora O'Neill

Duty and virtue are no longer the common coin of daily conversation. Both terms strike many of us as old-fashioned and heavy handed. Yet we incessantly talk about what ought and ought not to be done, and about the sorts of persons we admire or despise. As soon as we talk in these ways we discuss topics traditionally dealt with under the headings of duty and of virtue. If we no longer use these terms, it may be because we associate them with heavily moralistic approaches to life, with obsolete codes and ideals, with ‘Victorian’ values and attitudes, rather than because the concerns our predecessors discussed in these terms have vanished from our lives.

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(Something interesting I found)Posted: Monday, April 19, 2010 by cait
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