Self-interest: An Anthology of Philosophical Perspectives
Human beings naturally care a great deal for themselves--and couldn't survive otherwise. As Aquinas observed, the drive for self-preservation is the first law of nature. Yet in the imperative of self-love, philosophers have also perceived a tacit threat. Plato reminds us that 'the excessive love of self is in reality the source to each man of all offences.' And so the inevitability of self- concern must be balanced with its manifest potential for harm. But how is such a reconciliation possible? This collection brings tohether the efforts of twenty- three great thinkers addressing such themes as the nature of self-interest, its connection to benevolence and morality, and its implications for political theory. The philosophical results are rich and varied. "Self-Interest" is intended for philosophers, students, and anyone inclined to reflect upon a subject of such enduring importance and perplexity as the love of self.
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Thomas Aquinas c 12241274
Baruch Spinoza 16321677
Joseph Butler 16921752
Immanuel Kant 17241804
John Stuart Mill 18061873
William James 18421910
Ayn Rand 19051982
David Gauthier b 1932
David Hume 17111776
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