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Environmental Values

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Environmental Values

The Moral Worth of Creatures: Neo-Classical Metaphysics and the Value Theories of Rolston and Callicott

Francisco Bennzoni

Environmental Values 18 (2009): 5-32. doi: 10.3197/096327109X404717

ABSTRACT

After showing that Rolston's and Callicott's value theories are fundamentally flawed, I demonstrate that a value theory grounded in neoclassical, or process, metaphysics avoids the problems in, and incorporates insights from, these accounts. A fundamental thesis of neoclassical metaphysics is that individual creatures at all levels of reality (from non-sensuous, non-conscious to self-conscious) are subjects of experience. Since individuals are subjects, this value theory meets Callicott's legitimate demand that value requires a valuer. And because such subjectivity does not depend on consciousness, this theory meets Rolston's legitimate demand that intrinsic value not depend upon human valuation.

KEYWORDS

Environmental ethics, moral worth, intrinsic value, metaphysics

REFERENCES to other articles in Environmental Values:

Non-Humean Holism, Un-Humean Holism Y.S. Lo

A Humean Argument for the Land Ethic? Y.S. Lo


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