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Morals from Motives$
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Michael Slote

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780195138375

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0195138376.001.0001

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The Structure of Caring

The Structure of Caring

Chapter:
(p.63) Three The Structure of Caring
Source:
Morals from Motives
Author(s):

Michael Slote (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0195138376.003.0003

If we think caring can be a valid basis for ethics, we need to describe further what kind of overall pattern of caring motivation is morally best. An ”inverse care law” that treats ideal caring as simply varying according to how distant in familial or personal terms someone is from the agent is considered and rejected in favor of an ideal of ”balanced caring,” according to which concern for the class of those near and dear to one is to be balanced against (not be lopsided in relation to) concern for all others taken as a class. It is argued that humans can develop such motivation naturally without having to be told that it is their obligation (or that it is virtuous) to do so.

Keywords:   balanced caring, caring, inverse care law, motivation

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