John Finnis

in Human Rights and Common Good

Published in print April 2011 | ISBN: 9780199580071
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191729393 | DOI:

Show Summary Details


This introductory chapter aims to vindicate the idea of human rights (properly understood in their logical complexity) against scepticism which puts in doubt, or treats as ungrounded, the idea that rights can and should be predicated of human persons just as such. The vindication involves articulating and illustrating the reality of the spiritual as an intrinsic aspect of each human being's unitary reality or nature. This in turn requires articulation of the idea of radical capacities, and at least suggests the relevance of the universe's being providentially ordered. A change of mind in relation to Aquinas and paternalism is pointed out. The main arguments in the volume's remaining parts are surveyed with brief commentary, explanation, contextualizing, and some updating.

Keywords: human rights; scepticism; human nature; spirit; radical capacities; logic of rights; Aquinas; paternalism

Chapter.  7380 words. 

Subjects: Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.