Moral Tribes

Emotion, Reason and the Gap Between Us and Them

Author: Joshua Greene

Publisher: Atlantic Books Ltd

ISBN: 1782393382

Category: Psychology

Page: 300

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A ground-breaking and ambitious book that promotes a new understanding of morality, one that will help us to solve society's biggest problems. Our brains were designed for tribal life, for getting along with a select group of others (Us), and for fighting off everyone else (Them). But modern life has thrust the world's tribes into a shared space, creating conflicts of interest and clashes of values, along with unprecedented opportunities. As the world shrinks, the moral lines that divide us become more salient and more puzzling. We fight over everything from tax codes to gay marriage to global warming, and we wonder where, if at all, we can find our common ground. A grand synthesis of neuroscience, psychology, and philosophy, Moral Tribes reveals the underlying causes of modern conflict and lights a way forward. Our emotions make us social animals, turning Me into Us. But they also make us tribal animals, turning Us against Them. Our tribal emotions make us fight, sometimes with bombs, sometimes with words, and often with life-and-death stakes. Drawing inspiration from moral philosophy and cutting-edge science, Moral Tribes shows when we should trust our instincts, when we should reason, and how the right kind of reasoning can move us forward. Joshua Greene is the director of Harvard University's Moral Cognition Lab, a pioneering scientist, a philosopher, and an acclaimed teacher. The great challenge of Moral Tribes is this: How can we get along with Them when what they want feels so wrong? Finally, Greene offers a surprisingly simple set of maxims for navigating the modern moral terrain, a practical road map for solving problems and living better lives.
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The Point of View of the Universe

Sidgwick and Contemporary Ethics

Author: Katarzyna de Lazari-Radek,Peter Singer

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191022438

Category: Philosophy

Page: 320

View: 3765

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What does the idea of taking 'the point of view of the universe' tell us about ethics? The great nineteenth-century utilitarian Henry Sidgwick used this metaphor to present what he took to be a self-evident moral truth: the good of one individual is of no more importance than the good of any other. Ethical judgments, he held, are objective truths that we can know by reason. The ethical axioms he took to be self-evident provide a foundation for utilitarianism. He supplements this foundation with an argument that nothing except states of consciousness have ultimate value, which led him to hold that pleasure is the only thing that is intrinsically good. Are these claims defensible? Katarzyna de Lazari-Radek and Peter Singer test them against a variety of views held by contemporary writers in ethics, and conclude that they are. This book is therefore a defence of objectivism in ethics, and of hedonistic utilitarianism. The authors also explore, and in most cases support, Sidgwick's views on many other key questions in ethics: how to justify an ethical theory, the significance of an evolutionary explanation of our moral judgments, the choice between preference-utilitarianism and hedonistic utilitarianism, the conflict between self-interest and universal benevolence, whether something that it would be wrong to do openly can be right if kept secret, how demanding utilitarianism is, whether we should discount the future, or favor those who are worse off, the moral status of animals, and what is an optimum population.
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Identified versus Statistical Lives

An Interdisciplinary Perspective

Author: I. Glenn Cohen,Norman Daniels,Nir Eyal

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0190217502

Category: Medical

Page: 288

View: 8316

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The identified lives effect describes the fact that people demonstrate a stronger inclination to assist persons and groups identified as at high risk of great harm than those who will or already suffer similar harm, but endure unidentified. As a result of this effect, we allocate resources reactively rather than proactively, prioritizing treatment over prevention. For example, during the August 2010 gold mine cave-in in Chile, where ten to twenty million dollars was spent by the Chilean government to rescue the 33 miners trapped underground. Rather than address the many, more cost effective mine safety measures that should have been implemented, the Chilean government and international donors concentrated efforts in large-scale missions that concerned only the specific group. Such bias as illustrated through this incident raises practical and ethical questions that extend to almost every aspect of human life and politics. What can social and cognitive sciences teach us about the origin and triggers of the effect? Philosophically and ethically, is the effect a "bias" to be eliminated or is it morally justified? What implications does the effect have for health care, law, the environment and other practice domains? This volume is the first to take an interdisciplinary approach toward answering this issue of identified versus statistical lives by considering a variety of perspectives from psychology, public health, law, ethics, and public policy.
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Shaping Our Selves

On Technology, Flourishing, and a Habit of Thinking

Author: Erik Parens

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0190211776

Category: Medical

Page: 192

View: 1875

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When bioethicists debate the use of technologies like surgery and pharmacology to shape our selves, they are, ultimately, debating what it means for human beings to flourish. They are debating what makes animals like us truly happy, and whether the technologies at issue will bring us closer to or farther from such happiness. The positions that participants adopt in debates regarding such ancient and fundamental questions are often polarized, and cannot help but be deeply personal. It is no wonder that the debates are sometimes acrimonious. How, then, should critics of and enthusiasts about technological self-transformation move forward? Based on his experience at the oldest free-standing bioethics research institute in the world, Erik Parens proposes a habit of thinking, which he calls "binocular." As our brains integrate slightly different information from our two eyes to achieve depth of visual perception, we need to try to integrate greatly different insights on the two sides of the debates about technologically shaping our selves-if depth of intellectual understanding is what we are after. Binocular thinking lets us benefit from the insights that are visible from the stance of the enthusiast, who emphasizes that using technology to creatively transform our selves will make us happier, and to benefit from the insights that are visible from the stance of the critic, who emphasizes that learning to let our selves be will make us happier. Parens observes that in debates as personal as these, we all-critics and enthusiasts alike-give reasons that we are partial to. In the throes of our passion to make our case, we exaggerate our insights and all-too-often fall into the conceptual traps that language sets for us. Foolishly, we make conceptual choices that no one who truly wanted understanding would accept: Are technologies value-free or value-laden? Are human beings by nature creators or creatures? Is disability a medical or a social phenomenon? Indeed, are we free or determined? Parens explains how participating in these debates for two decades helped him articulate the binocular habit of thinking that is better at benefiting from the insights in both poles of those binaries than was the habit of thinking he originally brought to the debates. Finally, Parens celebrates that bioethics doesn't aspire only to deeper thinking, but also to better acting. He embraces not only the intellectual aspiration to think deeply about meaning questions that don't admit of final answers, but also the ethical demand to give clear answers to practical questions. To show how to respect both that aspiration and that demand, the book culminates in the description of a process of truly informed consent, in the context of one specific form of using technology to shape our selves: families making decisions about appearance normalizing surgeries for children with atypical bodies.
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The Art of Communication in Nursing and Health Care

An Interdisciplinary Approach

Author: Theresa Raphael-Grimm, PhD, CNS

Publisher: Springer Publishing Company

ISBN: 0826110568

Category: Medical

Page: 200

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A handy guide to tackling difficult patient and professional interactions with confidence and compassion In this age of increasing reliance on technology, it is essential that the fundamentals of compassion and good communication—the art of patient care—remain at the heart of health care. This clear, concise guide to professional communication strategies helps nurses and other health care clinicians to build effective patient relationships and navigate a wide variety of difficult patient and professional interactions. Written by a practicing psychotherapist who has devoted nearly 30 years of study to clinician—patient relationships, the book tackles such complex issues as dealing with demanding patients, maintaining professional boundaries, overcoming biases and stereotypes, managing clinician emotions, communicating bad news, challenging a colleague’s clinical opinion, and other common scenarios. The book guides the reader through a conceptual framework for building effective relationships that is based on the principles of mindfulness. These principles are embedded in discussions of the fundamental elements of interpersonal effectiveness, such as hope, empathy, and listening. Chapters apply mindfulness principles to specific challenging situations with concrete examples that describe effective clinical behaviors as well as situations depicting pitfalls that may impede compassionate care. From a focus on everyday manners in difficult situations to beneficial approaches with challenging populations, the guide helps health care professionals confidently resolve common problems. Brief, to-the-point chapters help clinicians channel their clinical knowledge and good intentions into caring behaviors that allow the patient to more fully experience empathy and compassion. With the guiding theme of “using words as precision instruments,” this is a resource that will be referred to again and again. Key Features: • Helps health care professionals and nurses communicate effectively in challenging clinical and professional situations • Uses the principles of mindfulness to build satisfying relationships and resolve problems • Addresses such difficult issues as demanding patients, maintaining boundaries, overcoming biases, managing clinician emotions, and much more • Provides special tips for communicating with family members and caregivers • Authored by a practicing psychotherapist specializing in clinician—patient relationships for nearly 30 years
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The Psychological Construction of Emotion

Author: Lisa Feldman Barrett,James A. Russell

Publisher: Guilford Publications

ISBN: 1462517013

Category: Psychology

Page: 479

View: 9818

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This volume presents cutting-edge theory and research on emotions as constructed events rather than fixed, essential entities. It provides a thorough introduction to the assumptions, hypotheses, and scientific methods that embody psychological constructionist approaches. Leading scholars examine the neurobiological, cognitive/perceptual, and social processes that give rise to the experiences Western cultures call sadness, anger, fear, and so on. The book explores such compelling questions as how the brain creates emotional experiences, whether the "ingredients" of emotions also give rise to other mental states, and how to define what is or is not an emotion. Introductory and concluding chapters by the editors identify key themes and controversies and compare psychological construction to other theories of emotion.
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Neuroscience, Neurophilosophy and Pragmatism

Brains at Work with the World

Author: T. Solymosi,J. Shook

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 1137376074

Category: Philosophy

Page: 326

View: 9735

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Bringing together active neuroscientists, neurophilosophers, and scholars this volume considers the prospects of a neuroscientifically-informed pragmatism and a pragmatically-informed neuroscience on issues ranging from the nature of mental life to the implications of neuroscience for education and ethics.
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Moral Dilemmas, Identity, and Our Moral Condition

A Guide for the Ethically Perplexed

Author: Michael Shaw Perry

Publisher: Algora Publishing

ISBN: 1628940751

Category: Philosophy

Page: 246

View: 4846

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For readers engaged in intellectual struggle, ethical thinking, and trying to figure out how to live a purposeful, fulfilling life, here is a critical and accessible approach to ethics. Moral dilemmas challenge us to think through sticky situations and lead us to look for moral grounding. Following Cicero and other ancient philosophers, the author views ethics in terms of the question of who and what sort of person one ought to be, without relying on religion or any other prescriptions.
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Outposts of Hope

First Peter's Christ for Culture Strategy

Author: Douglas D. Webster

Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers

ISBN: 1498200672

Category: Religion

Page: 174

View: 4169

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The original recipients of the Letter of First Peter inhabited a radically different social context from our own. We do not live under Roman imperial rule. Slave labor is not the driving force of our economy. Women are not under patriarchal domination in our culture as they once were. Society has changed, but what is beyond dispute is that Western culture remains antithetical to God's will and hostile to the Jesus way. The imperial Caesar has been replaced by the imperial self. The Pax Romana has been replaced by the American Dream. Western capitalism still trades in the bodies and souls of human beings. Culture obsesses over sexual freedom and material indulgence. Idolatry is pervasive. Autonomous individualism is the ideal. First Peter is about the inevitable clash with culture that ensues because of the good news of Jesus Christ. The Apostle Peter's bottom-up profile of costly discipleship is far more radical than we may realize. Hostility against the church is the believer's opportunity under pressure to reveal the goodness of God. Suffering and submission are essential for Peter's Christ for culture strategy. Sacrifice is the leverage of the gospel. Cross-bearing humility is the strategy for relating to culture and Christlike humility is essential for living in the household of God.
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The Moral Arc

How Science Makes Us Better People

Author: Michael Shermer

Publisher: Henry Holt and Company

ISBN: 0805096930

Category: Science

Page: 560

View: 6668

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Bestselling author Michael Shermer's exploration of science and morality that demonstrates how the scientific way of thinking has made people, and society as a whole, more moral From Galileo and Newton to Thomas Hobbes and Martin Luther King, Jr., thinkers throughout history have consciously employed scientific techniques to better understand the non-physical world. The Age of Reason and the Enlightenment led theorists to apply scientific reasoning to the non-scientific disciplines of politics, economics, and moral philosophy. Instead of relying on the woodcuts of dissected bodies in old medical texts, physicians opened bodies themselves to see what was there; instead of divining truth through the authority of an ancient holy book or philosophical treatise, people began to explore the book of nature for themselves through travel and exploration; instead of the supernatural belief in the divine right of kings, people employed a natural belief in the right of democracy. In The Moral Arc, Shermer will explain how abstract reasoning, rationality, empiricism, skepticism--scientific ways of thinking--have profoundly changed the way we perceive morality and, indeed, move us ever closer to a more just world.
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