This volume provides a new account of business ethics from the perspective of Catholic social thought. Focusing on the sense of agency of the business person and the interests of business firms, this volume addresses business from both "the outside" (with questions about economic life in Catholic social thought) and "the inside" (with attention to the internal dynamics of business firms). The result is a creative account of fundamental issues confronting the moral business leader and any firm committed to responsible (...) business practice. This volume is unique in the depth of the questions from Catholic social thought that it brings to bear on business. It begins with interviews of three CEOs to ensure a grounding in experience and a consideration of the intellectual history of business issues in Christianity. Most importantly, it deals with fundamental moral concerns: the character of agency, autonomy, practical wisdom, and the technocratic paradigm, along with other elements of Catholic social thought. The book then applies these concepts to assess management science, the motivations of business leaders, the role of luck in personal success, the traditional moral justifications of business, and more. (shrink)
Moral functioning is a defining feature of human personhood and human social life. Moral Psychology provides an integrative and evaluative overview of the theoretical and empirical traditions that have attempted to make sense of moral cognition, prosocial behavior, and the development of virtuous character.This is the first book to integrate a comprehensive review of the psychological literatures with allied traditions in ethics. Moral rationality and decisionmaking; the development of the sense of fairness and justice, and of prosocial dispositions; as well (...) as the notion of moral self and moral identity and their relation to issues of character and virtue are fully discussed in the rich contexts provided by psychological and philosophical paradigms. Lapsley emphasizes parenting and educational strategies for influencing moral behavior, reasoning, and character development, and charts a line of research for the “post-Kohlbergian era” in moral psychology.This book will be an invaluable text for advanced courses in moral psychology, as taught in departments of psychology, education, and philosophy. It will also prove to be a standard reference work for researchers and ethicists alike. (shrink)
In this engaging volume, Daniel Gardner explains the way in which the Four Books--_Great Learning_, _Analects_, _Mencius_, and _Maintaining Perfect Balance_--have been read and understood by the Chinese since the twelfth century. Selected passages in translation are accompanied by Gardner's comments, which incorporate selections from the commentary and interpretation of the renowned Neo-Confucian thinker, Zhu Xi. This study provides an ideal introduction to the basic texts in the Confucian tradition from the twelfth through the twentieth centuries. It guides the (...) reader through Zhu Xi's influential interpretation of the Four Books, showing how Zhu, through the genre of commentary, gave new coherence and meaning to these foundational texts. Since the Four Books with Zhu Xi's commentary served as the basic textbook for Chinese schooling and the civil service examinations for more than seven hundred years, this book illustrates as well the nature of the standard Chinese educational curriculum. (shrink)
Students and teachers of Chinese history and philosophy will not want to miss Daniel Gardner's accessible translation of the teachings of Chu Hsi —a luminary of the Confucian tradition who dominated Chinese intellectual life for centuries. Homing in on a primary concern of our own time, Gardner focuses on Chu Hsi's passionate interest in education and its importance to individual development. For hundreds of years, every literate person in China was familiar with Chu Hsi's teachings. They informed the curricula (...) of private academies and public schools and became the basis of the state's prestigious civil service examinations. Nor was Chu's influence limited to China. In Korea and Japan as well, his teachings defined the terms of scholarly debate and served as the foundation for state ideology. Chu Hsi was convinced that through education anyone could learn to be fully moral and thus travel the road to sagehood. Throughout his life, he struggled with the philosophical questions underlying education: What should people learn? How should they go about learning? What enables them to learn? What are the aims and the effects of learning? Part One of _Learning to Be a Sage_ examines Chu Hsi's views on learning and how he arrived at them. Part Two presents a translation of the chapters devoted to learning in the _Conversations of Master Chu_. (shrink)
Christian ethics has from the beginning been concerned with moral agency and culture, and Christian social ethics has acknowledged the power of social structures for the last 150 years. But ethics has yet to employ extensively the resources of that discipline that specializes in understanding structure and culture: sociology. Out of a concern to defend human freedom, Catholic social teaching has employed an individualistic approach that misdescribes the characteristics of social evil as little more than the sum of individual choices (...) and proposes individual conversion as a remedy. This book presents a refined sociological understanding of social structures and culture: critical realist sociology. It briefly describes the roots of critical realism in the natural sciences, its understanding of social structure and culture, and how structure and culture have causal impact on human decisions - through freedom, not cancelling it. It makes clear how, in most cases, people "go along" with the restrictions and opportunities offered them but, when there is sufficient frustration with these, how decisions can transform both structure and culture. The analysis is then applied in more detail to provide needed illumination in three areas: the ecological crisis, economic life, and virtue ethics. The core claims of the volume, offering an explanatory account of moral-agency-amidst-structure-and-culture for use in social ethics, would be of great interest to all those working in the field, both Catholic and Protestant. (shrink)
In this book, Daniel K. Miller articulates a new vision of human and animal relationships based on the foundational love ethic within Christianity. Framed around Jesus' parable of the Good Samaritan, Animal Ethics and Theologythoughtfully examines the shortcomings of utilitarian and rights-based approaches to animal ethics. By considering the question of animals within the Christian concept of neighbourly love, Miller provides an alternative narrative for understanding the complex relationships that humans have with other animals. This book addresses significant theological (...) questions such as: Does being created in the image of God present a meaningful distinction between humans and other animals? What does it mean for humans to have dominion over animals? Is meat eating a moral problem for Christians? In addition to drawing out the significance of Christian theology for field of animal ethics this book also engages environmental and feminist ethics. Miller brings a theological perspective to such questions as: Should care for animals be distinguished from care for the environment, and what role should human emotions play in our ethical dealings with other animals? As the title suggests, this book provides fresh insight into the theological significance of human relationships with other animals. mental and feminist ethics. Miller brings a theological perspective to such questions as: Should care for animals be distinguished from care for the environment, and what role should human emotions play in our ethical dealings with other animals? As the title suggests, this book provides fresh insight into the theological significance of human relationships with other animals. (shrink)
Caritas in veritate (Charity in Truth) is the ''social'' encyclical of Pope Benedict XVI, one of many papal encyclicals over the last 120 years that address economic life. This volume, based on discussions at a symposium co-sponsored by the Institute for Advanced Catholic Studies and the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, analyzes the situation of the Church and the theological basis for Benedict's thinking about the person, community, and the globalized economy.
Most psychology begins with a distinction between organism and environment, where the two are implicitly (and sometimes explicitly) conceptualized as flipsides of a skin-severed space. This paper examines that conceptualization. Dewey and Bentley's (1949) account of firm naming is used to show that psychologists have, in general, (1) employed the skin as a morphological criterion for distinguishing organisms from backgrounds, and (2) equated background with environment. This two-step procedure, which in this article is named the morphological conception of organism, is (...) shown to inform the writings of the well-known psychologist B. F. Skinner. A review of difficulties with the morphological conception is followed with a review and preliminary integration of four attempts at an alternative conception of organism, and thus environment. Together, these four attempts converge on an analysis of living systems as transdermal (through and across skin) processes only within which organism and environment are distinguishable as complementary phases. The notion of a biological total process, or bioprocess, is employed to clarify this alternative analysis, in which an organism is an ongoing organization rather than a skin-bound body. (shrink)
Distant Harms, Distant Markets looks at moral complicity in markets, employing resources from sociology, early Christian history, feminism, legal theory, and Catholic moral theology today. The authors skillfully explore the causal and moral responsibilities which consumers bear for the harms that markets cause to distant others.
In preparing for a lecture on the ethics of surgical complications, it became apparent that confusion exists about the definition of a ‘‘surgical complication.’’ Is it, as one medical website states, ‘‘any undesirable result of surgery?’’ . In the European Journal of Surgery, Veen et al.  provide a more elaborate definition: ‘‘every unwanted development in the illness of the patient or in the treatment of the patient’s illness that occurs in the clinic’’ . An esteemed historian of science suggests (...) yet another definition in a recent volume on surgical complications: ‘‘a complication, in any sphere of endeavour, is something out of the norm, and the product of extraneous and unexpected factors’’ . Such is the discrepancy in definitions that Rampersaud et al.  declared in 2006 that ‘‘presently, there is no clear or consistent definition of a complication in the surgical literature.’’ Much research in surgery aims to reduce the risk of surgical complications. However, until we have a stable and agreed definition of what counts as a surgical complication, we cannot reliably compare different studies to discover what best reduces the chance of surgical complications . Therefore, the topic is more than mere pedantry; defining surgical complications will help us with the broader question of how to improve surgical practice. A basic PubMed search returned nearly 800 articles with the phrases ‘‘surgical complications’’ or ‘‘surgical complication’’ in the title. But unlike the sources above. (shrink)
Psychologists sometimes discuss the need to refine clear designations of the observable units comprising their subject matter. This paper links such discussions to (a) Dewey and Bentley's (1949) account of specification as relatively accurate unit-designation, and (b) the logical base of scientific classifications and abstractions in observable particulars. The paper then reviews, clarifies, evaluates, and contrasts the psychological units proposed by Kantor (behavior segment), Skinner (operant), and Lee (deed). Overall, Lee's deed is found to be the sharpest, least ambiguous designation, (...) and the only specification. Deeds, fields of contributors, and contingencies are then used to selectively integrate aspects of all three units. The resulting integration is consistent with field-based approaches to causal relations within and among units, where the noun cause is synonymous with one of many contributors. It is also applicable to the analysis of feedback loops, which are designated as circular networks of dependency among subclasses of deeds. (shrink)
Using a real-life case involving an accidental discovery of misattributed paternity as a springboard for discussion, I reflect on several practical and theoretical issues surrounding truth-telling in the doctor-patient relationship. I present the moral dilemma and identify arguments in favour of and against disclosure. I then examine the theoretical difficulties in balancing conflicting reasons and in establishing what constitutes the 'truth'. I conclude that withholding the information from the patients would be ethically permissible and, more generally, that honesty is not (...) always the best policy. (shrink)
The ever-growing acceptance and use of assisted human reproduction techniques has caused demand for “donated” sperm and eggs to outstrip supply. Medical professionals and others argue that monetary reward is the only way to recruit sufficient numbers of “donors”. Is this a clash between pragmatics and policy/ethics? Where monetary payments are the norm, alternative recruitment strategies used successfully elsewhere may not have been considered, nor the negative consequences of commercialism on all participants thought through. Considerations leading some countries to ban (...) the buying and selling of sperm, eggs and embryos are outlined and a case made that the collective welfare of all involved parties be the primary consideration in this, at times heated, debate. (shrink)
Workers in distant nations who produce the products we buy frequently suffer from accidents, managerial malfeasance, and injustice. Are consumers who bought the products made by these workers in any way morally responsible for those injustices? And what about the far more frequent, less severe injustices, such as the withholding of wages, the denial of bathroom breaks, forced overtime, and harassment of various sorts? Could buying a shirt at the local department store create for you some responsibility for the horrendous (...) death in a factory fire of the women who sewed it half a planet away? (shrink)
Visuomotor adaptation to novel environments can occur via non-physical means, such as observation. Observation does not appear to activate the same implicit learning processes as physical practice, rather it appears to be more strategic in nature. However, there is evidence that interspersing observational practice with physical practice can benefit performance and memory consolidation either through the combined benefits of separate processes or through a change in processes activated during observation trials. To test these ideas, we asked people to practice aiming (...) to targets with visually rotated cursor feedback or engage in a combined practice schedule comprising physical practice and observation of projected videos showing successful aiming. Ninety-three participants were randomly assigned to one of five groups: massed physical practice, distributed physical practice, or one of 3 types of combined practice: alternating blocks, or all observation before or after blocked physical practice. Participants received 100 practice trials. All groups improved in adaptation trials and showed savings across the 24-h retention interval relative to initial practice. There was some forgetting for all groups, but the magnitudes were larger for physical practice groups. The Act and Obs_During groups were most accurate in retention and did not differ, suggesting that observation can serve as a replacement for physical practice if supplied intermittently and offers advantages above just resting. However, after-effects associated with combined practice were smaller than those for physical practice control groups, suggesting that beneficial learning effects as a result of observation were not due to activation of implicit learning processes. Reaction time, variable error, and post-test rotation drawings supported this conclusion that adaptation for observation groups was promoted by explicit/strategic processes. (shrink)
ABSTRACT Cybernetic attacks have been wrongly perceived as weapons of physical destruction rather than of disruption. Because modern, post?industrial societies have become critically dependent on computer networks to function on a day?to?day basis, disruption of those networks could have serious social and economic consequences. In order to better protect society, policymakers will have to re?orient their approach toward cyber security so as to emphasize the genuine cybernetic threat, which is network disruption rather than physical destruction.
This article argues that killing animals for food represents an extreme case within Christian moral thinking comparable to Karl Barth's Grenzfall argument against such violent acts as suicide, abortion, killing in self‐defense, capital punishment, and war. This position is in contrast to the view of many environmental philosophers who hold human hunting to be comparable to animal predation. It also disputes the language of substitutionary sacrifice prevalent in some Christian discussions of meat eating.
We report on the case of a 2-year-old female, the youngest person ever to undergo ovarian tissue cryopreservation (OTC). This patient was diagnosed with a rare form of sickle cell disease, which required a bone-marrow transplant, and late effects included high risk of future infertility or complete sterility. Ethical concerns are raised, as the patient's mother made the decision for OTC on the patient's behalf with the intention that this would secure the option of biological childbearing in the future. Based (...) on Beauchamp and Childress's principlism approach of respect for autonomy, nonmaleficence, beneficence, and justice, pursing OTC was ethically justified. (shrink)
This paper discusses a series of important methodological issues in developing targeted health-related quality of life measures in studies of the effects of medical interventions. Such measures cannot be developed unless the evaluator understands the life domains that medical interventions affect. Qualitative discovery methods are needed to obtain this understanding. Once domains are targeted for measurement, careful and systematic laboratory pilot work should be used to select initial scale items. Psychometric evaluation of response patterns in subsequent field tests is needed (...) to assess the measures. Less concern should be directed to internal consistency reliability of scales in the psychometric evaluation and more to the ability of short scales to reproduce total scale variance and to provide precise measurement within the range of the outcome where effects are expected. The paper closes with a discussion of modern methods of item response scaling that can be used to address these issues. (shrink)
Computer users are often the last line of defense in computer security. However, with repeated exposures to system messages and computer security warnings, neural and behavioral responses show evidence of habituation. Habituation has been demonstrated at a neural level as repetition suppression where responses are attenuated with subsequent repetitions. In the brain, repetition suppression to visual stimuli has been demonstrated in multiple cortical areas, including the occipital lobe and medial temporal lobe. Prior research into the repetition suppression effect has generally (...) focused on a single repetition and has not examined the pattern of signal suppression with repeated exposures. We used complex, everyday stimuli, in the form of images of computer programs or security warning messages, to examine the repetition suppression effect across repeated exposures. The use of computer warnings as stimuli also allowed us to examine the activation of learned fearful stimuli. We observed widespread linear decreases in activation with repeated exposures, suggesting that repetition suppression continues after the first repetition. Further, we found greater activation for warning messages compared to neutral images in the anterior insula, pre-supplemental motor area, and inferior frontal gyrus, suggesting differential processing of security warning messages. However, the repetition suppression effect was similar in these regions for both warning messages and neutral images. Additionally, we observed an increase of activation in the default mode network with repeated exposures, suggestive of increased mind wandering with continuing habituation. (shrink)