Impartial benevolence and partial love

Chappell, Timothy (2009). Impartial benevolence and partial love. In: Chappell, Timothy ed. The problem of moral demandingness. London: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 70–85.



‘Impartial benevolence and partial love’ contributes, like the other essays in the edited collection ‘The Problem of Moral Demandingness’, to the discussion of that problem. Its contribution is to offer a phenomenological exploration of the place that these two ideas/ ideals actually have in our ethical life and experience. On the basis of this exploration I argue that neither ideal, neither impartial benevolence nor partial love, comprehensively “trumps” the other — both are important, and more to the point, simply different. Hence there is no general algorithm for deciding which counts for more.

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