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Which Rights Should Be Universal?$
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William Talbott

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780195173475

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2005

DOI: 10.1093/0195173473.001.0001

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CULTURAL RELATIVISM ABOUT HUMAN RIGHTS

CULTURAL RELATIVISM ABOUT HUMAN RIGHTS

Chapter:
(p.39) 3 CULTURAL RELATIVISM ABOUT HUMAN RIGHTS
Source:
Which Rights Should Be Universal?
Author(s):

William Talbott (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0195173473.003.0003

In this chapter, Talbott explains why one of the most attractive arguments for extreme cultural relativism about morality, the moral imperialism argument, is incoherent. The incoherence of the cultural imperialism argument shows that extreme cultural relativism is too wishy-washy. Talbott distinguishes between internal and external moral norms and articulates a less extreme form of cultural relativism that is compatible with the cultural imperialism argument, cultural relativism about internal norms. This sets the stage for an evaluation of this less extreme form of cultural relativism.

Keywords:   external norms, cultural imperialism, cultural relativism, incommensurability, internal norms

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