University of Oregon

Academic Moral Philosophy (3 of 4)

On the 6-8 March 2009 the UCD School of Philosophy (whose expertise in the area of continental philosophy was recently ranked as one of the top ten globally by 'The Philosophical Gourmet') hosted the International Society for MacIntyrean Enquiry, at which Alasdair MacIntyre spoke "On Having Survived The Academic Moral Philosophy of the Twentieth Century".

MacIntyre's most famous book, After Virtue (1981), revealed the inconsistencies inherent in the various conflicting ethical systems born out of the Enlightenment, and which for the most part have shaped current social and political values. The common error, he argued in the book, was the failure to adequately ask the most basic of all questions. We ask what is it to be a good manager, teacher, or parent, but neglect to ask: what is it to be a good human being? MacIntyre encouraged his readers to rediscover with Aristotle the centrality of the virtues as concretely exemplifying the goals and practices of the good life.

Alasdair MacIntyre has written widely in philosophy since his first book, Marxism: An Interpretation, appeared in 1953. He is the author of over thirty books, and has made prominent contributions to the history of philosophy, moral philosophy, political theory, philosophy of the social sciences, and philosophy of religion. He has taught at Oxford University, Princeton University, Brandeis University, Boston University, Wellesley College, Vanderbilt University, Duke University, and the University of Notre Dame.