Horizons of Care



We began this book by examining the obstacles that industrialised, technological societies present to thinking about responsibilities to future people, at the same time as they place the question of what these responsibilities might be and how to fulfil them firmly on the philosophical and political agenda. The difficulties we encounter when trying to determine what these responsibilities might be and what might motivate present people to fulfil them are not therefore timeless conceptual problems. On the contrary, they have arisen within the particular historical setting provided by societies that rely on naturalised technologies and ceaseless technological innovation, and that conceive of these technological means as the best way to serve the general good, in the shape of the satisfaction of individual preferences. Over 200 years ago, Edmund Burke was able to define society as a contract between ‘those who are living, those who are dead, and those who are to be born’. Thomas Paine responded by arguing that

Every age and generation must be as free to act for itself, in all cases, as the ages and generations which preceded it. The vanity and presumption of governing beyond the grave, is the most ridiculous and insolent of all tyrannies. Man has no property in man; neither has any generation a property in the generations which are to follow.


Climate Sensitivity Solar Radiation Management Care Perspective Ethical Life Future People 
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Copyright information

© Christopher Groves 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Social SciencesCardiff UniversityUK

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