The illusory appeal of double effect – The significance of intent – Means and ends – Blame.; "In a clear and elegant style, T. M. Scanlon reframes current philosophical debates as he explores the moral permissibility of an action. Permissibility may seem to depend on the agent's reasons for performing an action. There seems to be an important moral difference, for example, between tactical bombing and a campaign by terrorists - even if the same number of noncombatants are killed - and this difference may seem to lie in the agents' respective aims. Scanlon argues, however, that the apparent dependence of permissibility on the agent's reasons in such cases is merely a failure to distinguish between two kinds of moral assessment: assessment of the permissibility of an action and assessment of the way an agent decided what to do." "The meaning of an action depends on the agent's reasons for performing it, in a way that its permissibility does not. Blame, he argues, is a response to the meaning of an action rather than to its permissibility. This analysis leads to a novel account of the conditions of moral responsibility and to important conclusions about the ethics of blame."–BOOK JACKET.
Epithets and attitudes – When truth gives out – What the emotivists should have said – What's the matter with relativism? – Matters of taste – Appendix 1 : what can be said? – Appendix 2 : relativism and contextualism about knowledge.