Loyalty, Justice, Virtue: <i>Contemporary Debates</i>

Mathew A. Foust

in Loyalty to Loyalty

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print August 2012 | ISBN: 9780823242696
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780823242733 | DOI:

Series: American Philosophy (FUP)

Loyalty, Justice, Virtue: Contemporary Debates

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One ongoing debate in contemporary moral and social philosophy involves how to negotiate competing claims of partiality and impartiality. Participants in this debate often follow Alasdair MacIntyre's example in “Is Patriotism a Virtue?” by contrasting “liberal morality” (impartial morality) with “the morality of patriotism” (partial morality). Liberal morality is a morality of universal and impersonal principles while the morality of patriotism is a morality of particularist ties and solidarities. Thus, the debate often takes the form of a contrast between impartial justice and partial loyalty. It is argued that Royce's philosophy of loyalty clarifies how loyalty and justice need not be seen as odds with one another. Moreover, it is argued that MacIntyre's proposed solution to this problem – a return to “something like” Aristotelian virtue ethics – is anticipated in Royce's philosophy of loyalty.

Keywords: Ethics; Impartiality/Partiality; Justice; Loyalty; Morality; Virtue

Chapter.  6309 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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