Normative Implications of Care
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Before developing further the implications of the care perspective, I begin this chapter by reviewing the argument made in Part I, together with the key points of contrast between the care and administrative imaginaries that have emerged in Chapter 5. The world in which we are faced with trying to understand the moral significance of our relationship to future people is one, I argued in Chapter 1, with various salient characteristics. It is, for instance, a world in which it is generally believed that the human condition is one which can be improved. Not only are humans, as Aristotle already argued, the kinds of creatures that can choose their own ends but they are also the kind of creatures that can consciously transform the natural and social worlds in ways intended to ensure the ends they choose are realised. As we saw, however, this emphasis on the centrality of innovation and creativity to the human condition creates problems for itself. The novelty of some new technologies, together with the ‘interference effects’ which may result from their use, often make the future consequences of our interventions in the world impossible to predict with confidence. Against this backdrop of radical uncertainty, the idea that we have specific responsibilities to future generations appears hard to sustain, especially within the climate of moral corruption that gathers around our reliance on foresight, in which we constantly confront the temptation to focus on determinate risks rather than on deeper uncertainties, which experience shows may nevertheless prove to be of greater significance.
KeywordsFuture Generation Attachment Relationship Moral Significance Cultural Object Care Perspective
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