A Delicate Balance: What Philosophy Can Tell Us about Terrorism

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Basic Books, 2004 - Philosophy - 176 pages
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Did the world change on September 11, 2001? For those who live outside of New York or Washington, life's familiar pace persists and families and jobs resume their routines. Yet everything seems different because of the dramatic disturbance in our sense of what our world means and how we exist within it. In A Delicate Balance, philosopher Trudy Govier writes that it is because our feelings and attitudes have altered so fundamentally that our world has changed. Govier believes that there are ethical challenges we cannot ignore. From Plato and Aristotle on courage to Kant on revenge, to 20th Century philosopher John Rawls's views on justice, Govier mines the world of philosophy to reflect on terrorism. Govier argues that moral complexities such as victimhood, evil, power and revenge, if properly understood, can provide a basis for hope? not despair. Govier walks the reader through this shift, challenging us to construct a new sense of the world and our place within it.
 

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Contents

Vulnerability
1
Victims
11
Evil
21
Hatred
31
Revenge
43
Power
53
Justice
65
Violence
79
Kindness
103
Courage
112
Perspective
123
Life
137
Vindication
149
Hope
159
Index
171
Copyright

Responsibility
93

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About the author (2004)

Philosopher, author, and lecturer, Trudy Govier is the author of several books and has written many articles on topics ranging from self-deception to nuclear deterrence. She lives and works in Calgary, Alberta.

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