A New Look at Courage
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Introduction Courage has a place both in philosophical ethics and in contemporary moral life. Regarding the former, for the majority of the twentieth century virtues in general and courage in particular were not standard topics in the philosophic literature. Martha Nussbaum writes Thirty years ago,just two varieties of ethical theory were being seriously considered in Anglo-American moral philosophy Utilitarianism and Kantianism 9. However, she notes, since then there has been a revival of interest in the notion of virtue, and to a type of ethical theory in which the notion of virtue plays a central role Nussbaum 10. Virtue theory has a conservative and a liberal approach. The liberal approach embraces the Enlightenment, universality, and the importance of reflection. The conservative approach is anti-Enlightenment, communitarian, and critical of the need for reflection.
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