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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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Justice and the Virtues

Justice and the Virtues

(p.90) 5 Justice and the Virtues

Joel J. Kupperman

Oxford University Press

This chapter investigates the idea of unity of virtues by analyzing justice. The nature of justice cannot be appreciated without a prior understanding of the limited scope of the word and of the concerns that are related to it. Justice is an artificial virtue that has to be qualified. To be a just person is to make appropriate decisions in some of the areas in which one deals with other people. Virtues can have important and visible links with other areas of a person's character. Virtue-ethics would be immune from the criticisms and would have no more disadvantages than does character-ethics. However, it is likely to say that there are people who, by the highest standards, genuinely possess some virtues but lack others. Virtue requires that one have all virtues. Virtues cannot be treated as essentially separate from one another.

Keywords:   justice, virtue, virtue-ethics, vices, moral virtue, genre criticism, system of justice, character-centered ethics, artificial virtues, natural virtues

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