Moral Phenomena: Volume 1

Moral Phenomena: Volume 1

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Since the nineteenth century, moral philosophy in the Western world has been dominated by utilitarianism, Kantianism, and relativism. Only a few philosophers have been able to escape from this Procrustean bed. Foremost among these few is Nicolai Hartmann (1882-1950). Together with Henri Bergson and Martin Heidegger, Hartmann was instrumental in restoring metaphysics. Hartmann's metaphysics differs markedly from that of both Bergson and Heidegger, in his indebtedness to Plato. In 1926, Hartmann published a massive treatise, Ethik, which was translated into English by Stanton Coit and published as Ethics in 1932. Ethics is probably the most outstanding treatise on moral philosophy in the twentieth century. The central concept of the book is "value." Drawing upon the pre-modern view of ethics, Hartmann maintains that values are objectively given, part and parcel of the order of being. We cannot invent values, we can merely discover them. The first part of Ethics is concerned with the structure of ethical phenomena and criticizes utilitarianism, Kantianism, and relativism as misleading approaches. After some introductory thoughts concerning the competence of practical philosophy, Hartmann discusses the essence of moral values, including their absoluteness and ideal being, and the essence of the "ought." Hartmann is both controversial and compelling. He provides a moral philosophy that rejects the subjectivism of the ruling approaches, without taking recourse to older theological notions on the foundation of the ethical. In sum: Hartmann's Ethics constitutes an impressive and preeminent contribution to moral philosophy.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 358 pages
  • 149.9 x 221 x 25.4mm | 635.04g
  • Taylor & Francis Inc
  • Transaction Publishers
  • Somerset, United Kingdom
  • English
  • New edition
  • New edition
  • black & white illustrations
  • 0765809095
  • 9780765809094
  • 1,403,403

Review quote

On Nicolai Hartmann's Ethics -This is a remarkable and perhaps an epoch-making book. . . . Certainly Professor Hartmann has brought into the philosophy of morality and into purely ethical theory a refreshing vitality and acuteness. . . . So valuable a contribution to ethics has not been made for many years, and it gives promise of more to come. . . . It is a genuine contribution of new knowledge.- --C. Delisle Burns, International Journal of Ethics -In this work Professor Hartmann has covered the ethical field from end to end in a luminous survey which never loses its unity, its proportion, or its philosophic depth. . . . I agree so profoundly with his method and his main ethical conceptions, and I am so grateful for the strength and clarity of his exposition, that I can only end by thanking him for what he has done.- --J. L. Stocks, Philosophy On Nicolai Hartmann's Ethics "This is a remarkable and perhaps an epoch-making book. . . . Certainly Professor Hartmann has brought into the philosophy of morality and into purely ethical theory a refreshing vitality and acuteness. . . . So valuable a contribution to ethics has not been made for many years, and it gives promise of more to come. . . . It is a genuine contribution of new knowledge." --C. Delisle Burns, International Journal of Ethics "In this work Professor Hartmann has covered the ethical field from end to end in a luminous survey which never loses its unity, its proportion, or its philosophic depth. . . . I agree so profoundly with his method and his main ethical conceptions, and I am so grateful for the strength and clarity of his exposition, that I can only end by thanking him for what he has done." --J. L. Stocks, Philosophy On Nicolai Hartmann's Ethics "This is a remarkable and perhaps an epoch-making book. . . . Certainly Professor Hartmann has brought into the philosophy of morality and into purely ethical theory a refreshing vitality and acuteness. . . . So valuable a contribution to ethics has not been made for many years, and it gives promise of more to come. . . . It is a genuine contribution of new knowledge." --C. Delisle Burns, International Journal of Ethics "In this work Professor Hartmann has covered the ethical field from end to end in a luminous survey which never loses its unity, its proportion, or its philosophic depth. . . . I agree so profoundly with his method and his main ethical conceptions, and I am so grateful for the strength and clarity of his exposition, that I can only end by thanking him for what he has done." --J. L. Stocks, Philosophyshow more

About Nicolai Hartmann

Nicolai Hartmann was born in 1882 in Riga, Latvia, of German parents. He studied philosophy and classics, first in St. Petersburg and later in Marburg, where he was appointed to a chair of philosophy in 1920. In 1931, after a short spell at the University of Cologne. Hartmann was offered the prestigious chair of philosophy by the University of Berlin, where he lectured until the end of the war, untainted by Nazism. From 1945 until his death in 1950 he held a chair of philosophy at the University of Gottingen. Andreas A.M. Kinneging is associate professor in legal philosophy at the University of Leiden, and author of several works in normative theory and intellectual history, including Aristocracy. Antiquity, and History: Classicism in Political Thought, published by Transaction.show more

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