What Is Honor?: A Question of Moral Imperatives

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9780300125641: What Is Honor?: A Question of Moral Imperatives

What is honor? Has its meaning changed since ancient times? Is it an outmoded notion? Does it still have the power to direct our behavior? In this provocative book Alexander Welsh considers the history and meaning of honor and dismisses the idea that we live in a post-honor culture. He notes that we have words other than honor, such as respect, self-respect, and personal identity, that show we do indeed care deeply about honor. Honor, he argues, is a continuing process of respect that motivates or constrains members of a peer group. Honor’s dictates function as moral imperatives.

 

Surprisingly, little systematic study of the history of honor in Western culture has been attempted. Offering a welcome remedy, Welsh provides a genealogy of approaches to the subject, mining some of the most influential texts of the Western tradition. He rereads with fascinating results the works of Aristotle, Cicero, Shakespeare, Mandeville, Montesquieu, Rousseau, Kant, Adam Smith, and others. With a sharp focus on the intersection of honor and ethics in both literature and philosophy, Welsh invites new and constructive debate on a topic of vital interest.

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About the Author:

Alexander Welsh is Emily Sanford Professor of English Literature Emeritus, Yale University. His previous books include Reflections on the Hero as Quixote, George Eliot and Blackmail, Strong Representations, Freud's Wishful Dream Book, and Hamlet in His Modern Guises, as well as a book on Scott and three on Dickens.

Review:

"Intelligent, well-informed, and thought-provoking, this book maps and renders intelligible a formidably difficult terrain: the intersection of honor with ethics in both literature and philosophy. This is an important book."—A.D. Nuttall, author of Shakespeare the Thinker
(A.D. Nuttall)

"Fascinating, erudite, and beautifully written, Alexander Welsh’s new book draws on Aristotle and Adam Smith, Shakespeare and Defoe, in its sweeping but subtle exploration of the meaning of honor."—Amy Chua, author of Day of Empire: How Hyperpowers Rise to Global Dominance—and Why They Fall
 
(Amy Chua)

". . . [A]n impressive philosophical and historical analysis regarding the role honor has played in societies from the early Greeks through contemporary times. . . . [U]seful for advanced students and scholars concerned with the history of ethics and moral theory generally. Highly recommended."— Choice (Choice)

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Welsh, Alexander
Editorial: Yale University Press (2008)
ISBN 10: 030012564X ISBN 13: 9780300125641
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Descripción Yale University Press, 2008. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. Never used!. Nº de ref. de la librería P11030012564X

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Alexander Welsh
Editorial: Yale University Press (2008)
ISBN 10: 030012564X ISBN 13: 9780300125641
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Descripción Yale University Press, 2008. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. book. Nº de ref. de la librería M030012564X

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Professor Alexander Welsh
Editorial: Yale University Press (2008)
ISBN 10: 030012564X ISBN 13: 9780300125641
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Descripción Yale University Press, 2008. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería DADAX030012564X

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