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After virtue : a study in moral theory by…

After virtue : a study in moral theory (1981)

by Alasdair C. MacIntyre

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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
MacIntyre resurrected a virtue-based ethics and tied it to politics and society in an interesting way -- through narrative -- in order to connect Catholic thought, progressive politics, and democracy. His vision of community is interesting, but not, I think, altogether complete.
  Fledgist | May 5, 2012 |
This is a sweeping book that covers moral theory from Aristotle up to today. MacIntyre provides a bleak view of the state of modern moral discourse, regarding it as failing to be rational, and failing to admit to being irrational. He claims that older forms of moral discourse were in better shape, particularly singling out Aristotle's moral philosophy as an exemplar. After Virtue is among the most important texts in the recent revival of virtue ethics.
MacIntyre's argument is not just about the collapse of communities, it’s also about the transformation in how we think about the moral life that has purged the language of virtue from our speech and from our sensibility. After Virtue ends by posing the question 'Nietzsche or Aristotle?', although MacIntyre acknowledges that the book does not give sufficient grounds for a definitive answer that it is Aristotle, not Nietzsche, who points to the best solution for the problems that the book has diagnosed. Those grounds are set out in MacIntyre's subsequent works, in which he elaborates a sophisticated revision of the philosophical tradition of Aristotelianism.
In this work he is an advocate of the community over the individual and it is a sad story, but told no better than here. ( )
1 vote jwhenderson | Apr 7, 2012 |
Reading this was one of those "aha!" moments for me. I am convinced that some sort of virtue-based approach to ethics is not only traditional, but evangelically fruitful in a modern culture which conditions its members to reflexively resist "rules".
  johnredmond | Nov 29, 2010 |
After Virtue: A Study in Moral Theory by Alasdair C. MacIntyre (1984) ( )
  leese | Nov 23, 2009 |
This is one of the truly worth while reads of the last 20 years, and may while change the landscape of Christian ethics for the next 100. MacIntye challenges the very foundation stones of ethical arguments based on biblical interpretation. An absolute must read ( )
  hatterluke | Feb 11, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0268006113, Paperback)

Morality, according to Alasdair MacIntyre, is not what it used to be. In the Aristotelian tradition of ancient Greece and medieval Europe, morality enabled the transformation from untutored human nature as it happened to be to human nature as it could be if it realized its telos (fundamental goal). Eventually, belief in Aristotelian teleology waned, leaving the idea of imperfect human nature in conflict with the perfectionist aims of morality. The conflict dooms to failure any attempt to justify the claims of morality, whether based on emotion, such as Hume's was, or on reason, as in the case of Kant. The result is that moral discourse and practice in the contemporary world is hollow: although the language and appearance of morality remains, the substance is no longer there. Disagreements on moral matters appeal to incommensurable values and so are interminable; the only use of moral language is manipulative.

The claims presented in After Virtue are certainly audacious, but the historical erudition and philosophical acuity behind MacIntyre's powerful critique of modern moral philosophy cannot be disregarded. Moreover, independently of its principal claims, the book, first published in 1981, helped to stimulate philosophical work on the virtues, to reinvigorate traditionalist and communitarian thought, and to provoke valuable discussion in the history of moral philosophy. It was so widely discussed that MacIntyre added another chapter to the second edition in order to reply to his critics. After Virtue continues to deserve attention from philosophers, historians, and anyone interested in moral philosophy and its history. --Glenn Branch

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:21:13 -0400)

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"When After Virtue first appeared in 1981, it was recognized as a significant and potentially controversial critique of contemporary moral philosophy. Newsweek called it "a stunning new study of ethics by one of the foremost moral philosophers in the English-speaking world." Now, twenty-five years later, the University of Notre Dame Press is pleased to release the third edition of After Virtue, which includes a new prologue "After Virtue after a Quarter of a Century."" "In this classic work, Alasdair MacIntyre examines the historical and conceptual roots of the idea of virtue, diagnoses the reasons for its absence in personal and public life, and offers a tentative proposal for its recovery. While the individual chapters are wide-ranging, once pieced together they comprise a penetrating and focused argument about the price of modernity."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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