Alasdair MacIntyre as a Critic of the Enlightenment Project of Justifying Morality (II): The History of the Corruption of the Modern Ethics Cover Image

Alasdair MacIntyre jako krytyk oświeceniowego projektu uzasadnienia moralności (II): Dzieje degeneracji etyki nowożytnej
Alasdair MacIntyre as a Critic of the Enlightenment Project of Justifying Morality (II): The History of the Corruption of the Modern Ethics

Author(s): Sebastian Gałecki
Subject(s): Ethics / Practical Philosophy, Contemporary Philosophy, Existentialism
Published by: Uniwersytet Humanistyczno-Przyrodniczy im. Jana Długosza w Częstochowie
Keywords: MacIntyre A.; “the Enlightenment Project of Justifying Morality”; rationalism; existentialism; intuitionism; utilitarianism; emotivism; postmodernity;

Summary/Abstract: In the famous “disquieting suggestion” Alasdair MacIntyre has written a hypothetical state of modern ethics as a set of mutually antagonistic, chaotic, irrational and ultimately arbitrary positions. The late work of this extremely popular contemporary Scottish philosopher (although for many decades living in the United States), sometimes referred to “an interminably long history of ethics”, is devoted to mainly two purposes: to prove the arguments put forward in the “disquieting suggestion” and to overcome this crisis. This series of two articles is devoted to the presentation of the first, negative aim of MacIntyre. MacIntyre summarizes the main reasons of the contemporary crisis into the three slogans: incommensurability of terms and languages, the conceptual incommensurability of the rival arguments, and the ostensible impersonal, objective rationality. These three elements are characteristic of all modern ethical theories realizing “the enlightenment project of justifying morality”. As the example, MacIntyre has shown two post-Enlightenment ethical traditions: liberal individualism (negating the social dimension of the person and the communal base of practical rationality) and emotivism, which is based on the negation of rational discourse, leading to persuasion and propaganda in the moral sphere.

  • Issue Year: XIV/2017
  • Issue No: 14
  • Page Range: 243-265
  • Page Count: 23
  • Language: Polish