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Joel J. Kupperman

Print publication date: 1995

Print ISBN-13: 9780195096545

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195096545.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 14 July 2020

What is Character?

What is Character?

(p.3) 1 What is Character?

Joel J. Kupperman

Oxford University Press

This chapter illustrates character as the fundamental facet of ethics. This book explores, analyzes, and defines character in different ways. Character involves habits and tendencies of thought and action that are not, or at least need not have been, original to a person. It has a vital role in how we act. It can provide the threads that bind together the various episodes and commitments of a person's life. The word personality is sometimes treated as interchangeable with character. On the other hand, the word character is less concerned with distinctiveness and individuality than the word personality. Nevertheless, how people take on and handle various kinds of responsibility best describe the role of character in ethical behavior.

Keywords:   character, ethics, personality, ethical behavior, role of character, personal qualities, John Locke's tabula rasa, fatalism, individuality, virtues

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