Metaethics - Metaethics The Challenge of Cultural...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–5. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Metaethics The Challenge of Cultural Relativism James Rachels
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
There are a lot of different ways people have expressed There are a lot of different ways people have expressed cultural relativism. Here are a few of the ways: cultural relativism. Here are a few of the ways: 1. 1. Different societies have different moral codes Different societies have different moral codes 2. 2. There is no objective standard that can be used to judge There is no objective standard that can be used to judge one societal code better than another one societal code better than another 3. 3. The moral code of our own society has no special status; The moral code of our own society has no special status; it is one among many it is one among many 4. 4. There is no ‘universal truth’ in ethics; that is, there are no There is no ‘universal truth’ in ethics; that is, there are no moral truths that hold for all peoples at all times moral truths that hold for all peoples at all times 5. 5. The moral code of a society determines what is right The moral code of a society determines what is right within that society; that is, the moral code of a society within that society; that is, the moral code of a society says that a certain action is right, then that action is right, says that a certain action is right, then that action is right, at least within that society. at least within that society. 6. 6. It is mere arrogance for us to try to judge the conduct of It is mere arrogance for us to try to judge the conduct of other peoples. We should adopt an attitude of tolerance other peoples. We should adopt an attitude of tolerance toward the practices of other cultures. toward the practices of other cultures.
Background image of page 2
Notice that Rachels seems to pick #4 as the explanation of cultural relativism that he is going to use. But we had better make clear that there is a further claim on the end of it: that the truth of moral claims is a function of the beliefs/practices of a culture (plus the bit about no universal truths). A complication is that Rachels sometimes substitutes “objective truth” for “universal truth”. This is fine, but we should say more about what an ‘objective truth’ is.
Background image of page 3

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Objective truth versus Subjective truth? Objective truths
Background image of page 4
Image of page 5
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 10/14/2011 for the course PHIL 2103 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '08 term at Arkansas.

Page1 / 22

Metaethics - Metaethics The Challenge of Cultural...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 5. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online