Journal of Religious Ethics 25 (1):65 - 85 (1997)

Abstract
Kierkegaard's "Works of Love" provocatively presses for a reconsideration of impartiality, partiality, and equality. Past readings of this text have typically (1) criticized its focus on the abstract category of "human being," ignoring its attention to distinctiveness and difference; (2) defended it from the charge of abstraction by accenting its treatment of distinctiveness and difference, playing down its assumptions about the "essentially" human; (3) acknowledged its emphases on both essence and difference, arguing that they are incompatible and irreconcilable; or (4) acknowledged both emphases, assuming they are compatible without exploring or accounting for the apparent incompatibility. As a means of resolving this seeming inconsistency, I will focus on Kierkegaard's recommendation of moral blindness and its implications for moral vision, and I will argue that "Works of Love" contains resources for an understanding of impartiality that allows moral attention to concrete difference.
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