The Journal of Value Inquiry

, Volume 45, Issue 2, pp 229–232 | Cite as

N. Zack, Ethics for Disaster

Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield Publishers Inc., 2009, 164 pages. ISBN: 0-74256-494-0 (cloth). Hardback: $59.95
  • Dale Murray
Book Review

Given the impact of Hurricane Katrina on the Gulf Coast region and the national debate centering on the perception that the US federal government utterly failed in its preparation and response to the storm, many persons are likely to have eagerly awaited a book such as Naomi Zack’s Ethics for Disaster. Generally speaking ethicists have shied away from moral assessments in any way linked to storms, earthquakes, and the like based on the premise that such calamities are not caused by moral agents. Without any culpable cause of disasters, perhaps the only germane normative question would seem to be how charitable people ought to be in the face of natural destruction. Of course, this question may not strike many as all that philosophically meaty. However, the furor about what could and should have been done before Katrina struck and what preparations are owed to citizens preceding possible future calamities have put preparation ethics in focus. The more recent rash of earthquakes and...

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyUniversity of Wisconsin-Baraboo/Sauk CountyBarabooUSA
  2. 2.University of Wisconsin-Richland Richland CenterUSA

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