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The Rejection of ConsequentialismA Philosophical Investigation of the Considerations Underlying Rival Moral Conceptions$
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Samuel Scheffler

Print publication date: 1994

Print ISBN-13: 9780198235118

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0198235119.001.0001

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(p.133) Agent‐Centred Restrictions, Rationality, and the Virtues

(p.133) Agent‐Centred Restrictions, Rationality, and the Virtues

The Rejection of Consequentialism

Samuel Scheffler

Oxford University Press

Scheffler responds to Philippa Foot's argument that agent‐centred restrictions cease to appear paradoxical when considered in the light of a certain virtue‐based, non‐consequentialist theory. Foot argues that the ranking of states of affairs from best to worst owes its place within morality to the virtue of benevolence, but that other virtues such as justice limit the role of such rankings in morality. According to Scheffler, Foot suggests that meaningful comparison of states of affairs is impossible when one of the states of affairs is the result of an unjust action. Scheffler rejects this suggestion as he explores the apparent conflict between agent‐centred restrictions and a conception of rationality, maximizing rationality, which is embodied in consequentialism as well as in other normative theories.

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