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Torture and Moral IntegrityA Philosophical Enquiry$
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Matthew H. Kramer

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198714200

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198714200.001.0001

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Introduction I: Moral Conflicts and Deontology

Introduction I: Moral Conflicts and Deontology

(p.1) 1 Introduction I: Moral Conflicts and Deontology
Torture and Moral Integrity

Matthew H. Kramer

Oxford University Press

After briefly adumbrating the structure of the book as a whole, this chapter addresses some important matters in the more abstract reaches of moral philosophy. It disambiguates several key concepts in order to clarify the import of moral conflicts, and it elucidates the distinction between deontological obligations and consequentialist obligations. It repels a number of arguments propounded by philosophers who have maintained that moral conflicts are not genuinely possible. It proceeds to delineate the general structure of morality, with reference to the deontology/consequentialism distinction and the other distinctions that have been highlighted earlier in the chapter. The author's absolutist position is pitted against Michael Moore's threshold deontology, which deems the perpetration of interrogational torture to be permissible in circumstances of desperation.

Keywords:   moral conflicts, deontology, consequentialism, moral philosophy, obligations, torture, threshold deontology

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