Right and Wrong [Book Review]

Review of Metaphysics 22 (2):390-390 (1968)


Jonathan and Paul Weiss, obviously enjoying themselves, spar with one another over everyday problems of ethical decisions and principles--problems which they have obviously discussed before and which they now air for our benefit, taking advantage of their prolonged and special relationship to avoid haggling over banalities and to present the fruits of dialogue without its heavy stalks. Although the two men are enjoying their talk, their tone is not frivolous. They reveal a deep and human concern with the issues they are discussing. They are aware of their presuppositions but conscientiously avoid any philosophically compulsive examination of them. The result is that the lay reader is rewarded with strong substantive positions that deal squarely, even if not definitively, with the practical issues at hand. The format of the book is what appears to be a transcription of actual conversations about the individual, his obligations, the family, the state, society, and the universe. The conversations often seemed to be "staged," however, with one of them playing devil's advocate. They stick to the agenda and leave each issue when the time is up or when the discussion becomes unfruitful.--S. O. H.

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