Moral methodology and the third theory of rights


The paper engages the conceptual question of the nature of rights. First, moral methodology for developing criteria to judge the adequacy of theories for the concept of rights is discussed. Standard methodologies for conceptual theory, such as analysis of language practices, appealing to intuitions to test and correct hypotheses, and mixtures of these with appeals to substantive moral values, are shown to fail in important ways to give us reasons to adopt one or another view of the concept. An alternative methodology is proposed which appeals to the distinct role of concepts in our value scheme (the added value of being able to employ such concepts in our moral judgments). This is then used to develop criteria for a successful theory of rights. Two existing theories are shown, as a matter of illustration, to fail to satisfy the criteria, and finally an alternative theory of rights which does satisfy these criteria is proposed and defended.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 79,702

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

  • Only published works are available at libraries.

Similar books and articles

Defending the Right To Do Wrong.Ori J. Herstein - 2012 - Law and Philosophy 31 (3):343-365.
Moral rights: Conflicts and valid claims.Judith Wagner Decew - 1988 - Philosophical Studies 54 (1):63 - 86.
The moral foundation of rights.L. W. Sumner - 1987 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Collective Rights and Minority Rights.Seumas Miller - 2000 - International Journal of Applied Philosophy 14 (2):241-257.
An examination and defense of one argument concerning animal rights.Tom Regan - 1979 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 22 (1-4):189 – 219.
The Nature of Rights.Louis G. Lombardi - 1985 - Philosophy Research Archives 11:431-439.
Natural rights and individual sovereignty.Siegfried Van Duffel - 2004 - Journal of Political Philosophy 12 (2):147–162.


Added to PP

69 (#184,258)

6 months
1 (#480,202)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Saladin Meckled-Garcia
University College London

Citations of this work

On Prepositional Duties.Tim Hayward - 2013 - Ethics 123 (2):264-291.

Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references