Why we have ethical questions but not answers (via eriktrips)

The author argues that even without an agreed up objective standard of morality, there can still be a discussion of morality based on the “cultural constructions,” – how well the society succeeds in its purposes based on its ideas. This is a particularly significant passage –

What that leaves us with can vary depending on whom one talks to, but among other things, it is possible to critique cultural constructions from within their very constructedness without having to appeal to an objective standard. In fact it is the constructions themselves that are critiqued: arguments and their consequences are not without consequences simply because they are not objective. The real does not dissolve when dualism is questioned but becomes a part of discursive practices that have real effects on real beings whose discursive aspects do not render them less real or less prone to suffering.

I freely admit that I may not understand the argument as well as I should but I am delighted with the idea of still having a “common” ground discussion of a society even without an agreement on what form of morality should be the standard.

James Pilant

As so many do, this post started as a reply to another post elsenet where a writer was quoted about something like the impossibility of an ethics of narrative or what is commonly thought of as postmodernity’s most glaring problem: that of the relativism of its moral arguments, when it has any. Usually when I read the phrase “post-modern ‘anything goes'” it is being written by someone in a field in which postmodern theory does not figure very larg … Read More

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