Moral Nihilism: The Good, the Bad, and the Skeptical
Morality is a contested phenomenon. Deeply committed partisans have fought over its meaning for millennia. Nevertheless, no enduring consensus has been reached. Some thinkers, including social scientists, have sought a way out of this predicament by positing that no answer is possible. Those here designated "moral nihilists" argue that morality is either unnecessary or impossible. Arrayed into three groups that may be distinguished as either "good," "bad," or "skeptical," they present a variety of reasons for purging morality from our thought categories. Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Karl Marx, Friedrich Nietzsche, Abraham Maslow, Carl Rogers, John Dewey, and Michele Foucault may all be counted as within their ranks. And yet, if morality is understood as a tripartite process in which people participate, their objections prove misleading. Morality is real and continues to be a vital part of the human experience. To contend otherwise is to embrace the prospect of anarchy.
Melvyn L. Fein. 2011. "Moral Nihilism: The Good, the Bad, and the Skeptical" The SelectedWorks of Melvyn L. Fein
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/melvyn_fein/49