The Oxford Handbook of Value Theory

ISBN : 9780190927028

Iwao Hirose; Jonas Olson
458 Pages
170 x 244 mm
Pub date
Nov 2018
Oxford Handbooks
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Value theory, or axiology, looks at what things are good or bad, how good or bad they are, and, most fundamentally, what it is for a thing to be good or bad. Questions about value and about what is valuable are important to moral philosophers, since most moral theories hold that we ought to promote the good (even if this is not the only thing we ought to do). This Handbook focuses on value theory as it pertains to ethics, broadly construed, and provides a comprehensive overview of contemporary debates pertaining not only to philosophy but also to other disciplines-most notably, political theory and economics.

The Handbook's twenty-two newly commissioned chapters are divided into three parts. Part I: Foundations concerns fundamental and interrelated issues about the nature of value and distinctions between kinds of value. Part II: Structure concerns formal properties of value that bear on the possibilities of measuring and comparing value. Part III: Extensions, finally, considers specific topics, ranging from health to freedom, where questions of value figure prominently.


Introduction to Value Theory: Iwao Hirose and Jonas Olson
Part I: Foundations
1. Value and Normativity: Michael J. Zimmerman
2. Intrinsic and Extrinsic Value: Toni Ronnow-Rasmussen
3. Doubts about Intrinsic Value: Jonas Olson
4. Value and Desires: Graham Oddie
5. Value and Emotions: Christine Tappolet
6. Neutral and Relative Value: Garrett Cullity
7. Value and Time: Krister Bykvist
8. Monism and Pluralism about Value: Chris Heathwood
9. Prudential Value: Valerie Tiberius
10. Kantian Axiology and the Dualism of Practical Reason: Ralf M. Bader
Part II: Structure
11. Value Incomparability and Incommensurability: Ruth Chang
12. Value Superiority: Gustaf Arrhenius and Wlodek Rabinowicz
13. General and Personal Good: Harsanyi's Contribution to the Theory of Value: John Broome
14. Theories of Value Aggregation: Utilitarianism, Egalitarianism , Prioritarianism: Nils Holtug
15. Organic Unities: Erik Carlson
16. Skepticism about Value Aggregation: Iwao Hirose
Part III: Extensions
17. Value and Cost-Benefit Analysis: Matthew D. Adler
18. The Value of Health: Daniel Hausman
19. Freedom and Its Value: Prasanta Pattanaik and Yongsheng Xu
20. Value in Nature: David Schmidtz
21. Population Axiology: M. A. Roberts
22. The Value of Existence: Gustaf Arrhenius and Wlodek Rabinowicz

About the author: 

Iwao Hirose is Associate Professor at the Philosophy Department and the School of Environment, McGill University. He is the author of Moral Aggregation (OUP, 2015), Egalitarianism (2015), and The Ethics of Health Care Rationing (with Greg Bognar, 2014). He is also editor of Weighing and Reasoning: Themes from the Philosophy of John Broome (with Andrew Reisner, OUP, 2015). Jonas Olson is Professor of Practical Philosophy at Stockholm University. He works mainly on value theory, metaethics, and the history of moral philosophy. He is the author of Moral Error Therory: History, Critique, Defence (OUP, 2014).

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