Value Theory

Tim Mulgan

in Future People

Published in print January 2006 | ISBN: 9780199282203
Published online May 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780191603624 | DOI:
 						Value Theory

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This chapter rejects the common assumption that we can construct a theory of value in isolation from our theory of right action on the grounds that our strongest moral convictions concern the morality of actions rather than the values of possible worlds. Moderate Consequentialism (which does not always oblige us to produce the best available outcome) can separate judgements of value from judgements of right action. This flexibility enables us to dissolve familiar puzzles without abandoning standard Consequentialist value theory. For instance, to solve Parfit’s Repugnant Conclusion, a lexical view is defended using both Kantian and Consequentialist arguments. This chapter begins with a sketch of the theory of well-being required by moderate Consequentialism. Its primary focus will be on theories of aggregation: accounts of the relationship between the value of an outcome and the values of the individual lives it contains.

Keywords: Parfit; Repugnant Conclusion; well-being; lexical; Kant; Consequentialism

Chapter.  12120 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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