Unto the Thousandth Generation: Conceptualizing Intergenerational Justice
The problem of intergenerational justice is among the most important issues in contemporary politics. Yet contemporary philosophers and political theorists have had great difficulty coming to grips with the nature and extent of our intergenerational obligations. This book examines the historical roots of intergenerational justice and analyzes this concept critically. Contemporary approaches are critiqued for their inability to address adequately such essential «intergenerational» questions as whether, and under what circumstances, we have an obligation to perpetuate the human species, the moral implications of our power to affect the identity of future persons, and the nature of our obligations to the dead. The concluding chapters propose a broader understanding of intergenerational justice and the moral necessity of establishing a tradition of just intergenerational action as our legacy to posterity.
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THE HISTORICAL ROOTS
THE LIMITATIONS OF CONTEMPORARY APPROACHES
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act justly actions that affect alter the identity ancestors approaches to intergenerational argue argument average utilitarianism benefits Brian Barry Burke child commitments concept of intergenerational concept of justice contemporary thinkers contemporary understandings Covenant Derek Parfit distant future duty Edmund Burke energy resources Ernest Partridge example existence of future extent Feinberg future persons future population genetic defect genetic engineering genetic makeup genocide Golding's harm the dead harm to future human species identity of future immediate descendants important interests intergenerational community intergenerational ethics intergenerational justice intergenerationally unjust Joel Feinberg living non-identity problem nuclear nuclear war obligation to procreate obligations to future obligations to past person-affecting principles Peter Laslett Plato polis position possible posterity present questions of intergenerational Reasons and Persons recognize remote future Responsibilities to Future scenario standards survival theory of intergenerational Theory of Justice total utilitarianism traditional understanding of intergenerational understanding of justice universalistic wrong