Research Article

Why Ethical Philosophy Needs to Be Comparative

Joel J. Kuppermana1 c1

a1 University of Connecticut


Principles can seem as entrenched in moral experience as Kant thinks space, time, and the categories are in human experience of the world. However not all cultures have such a view. Classical Indian and Chinese philosophies treat modification of the self as central to ethics. Decisions in particular cases and underlying principles are much less discussed.

Ethics needs comparative philosophy in order not to be narrow in its concerns. A broader view can give weight to how people sometimes can change who they are, in order to lead better lives.

JJK is Board of Trustees Professor of Philosophy at the University of Connecticut. His Theories of Human Nature, East and West will be published this fall.