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Moral Combat : The Dilemma of Legal Perspectivalism - Heidi Hurd

Moral Combat

The Dilemma of Legal Perspectivalism


Published: 31st July 2008
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This book explores the thesis that legal roles force people to engage in moral combat, an idea which is implicit in the assumption that citizens may be morally required to disobey unjust laws, while judges may be morally required to punish citizens for civil disobedience. Heidi Hurd advances the surprising argument that the law cannot require us to do what morality forbids.

The 'role-relative' understanding of morality is shown to be incompatible with both consequentialist and deontological moral philosophies. In the end, Hurd shows that our best moral theory is one which never makes one actor's moral success turn on another's moral failure. Moral Combat is a sophisticated, well-conceived and carefully argued book on a very important and controversial topic at the junction between legal and political philosophy.

It will be of interest to moral, legal, and political philosophers, as well as teachers and students of professional ethics in law.

"[Hurd's] book is admirably systematic, rigorous, clear, informed, and reasonable." Ethics "Hurd's book brings many important issues in moral, political, and legal philosophy together in a structured way...I found Moral Combat to be rich and have prompted reflection." Thaddeus Metz, The Philosophical Review "This striking and challenging book lays out as persuasive a case as can be made against the view that citizens and legal officials should elevate legal roles over moral commitments and in favor of the view that democracy and the rule of law are not well served by what Hurd calls the moral perspectivist point of view. This book makes an especially powerful case against the view that it is right to punish those who are morally innocent in order to advance or preserve institutional values. Philosophers, lawyers, and others committed to the humanistic study of law will find much of value in Hurd's thorough review of the arguments in favor of treating law as authoritative when it conflicts with morality. Hurd's book is destined to become a landmark in the field. Highly recommended for upper-division undergraduates, graduate students, faculty, and practitioners." Choice "This volume by a professor of law and philosophy explores the thesis that legal roles force people to engage in moral combat, since citizens may be morally required to disobey unjust laws and judges may be morally required to punish citizens for civil disobedience." Ethics, Law, and Aging Review

The Dilemma of Legal Perspectivalism
The incompatibility of weak retributivism, the rule of law, and the separation of powers
Sources of the Dilemma of Legal Perspectivalism
The rejection of moral relativism
The indefensibility of practical authority
The failure of influential authority
The limits of advisory authority
A defense of theoretical authority
The Moral Case for Legal Perspectivalism
Practical errors: pragmatic foundations for perspectivalism
The rule of law values: principled foundations for judicial perspectivalism
The values of democracy and the separation of powers: principled foundations for constitutional perspectivalism
The Moral Case Against Legal Perspectivalism
Consequentialism and moral correspondence
Deontology and moral correspondence
Resolving the Dilemma of Legal Perspectivalism
Legal practices without moral combat
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521089999
ISBN-10: 0521089999
Series: Cambridge Studies in Philosophy and Law
Audience: Professional
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 368
Published: 31st July 2008
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.24  x 2.083
Weight (kg): 0.54