Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 26 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This article considers the relationship between Levinas’s ethics and the “second-personal” approach adopted by Stephen Darwall and K. E. Løgstrup. Darwall’s ethics treats the second-personal relation as one of command as an exercise of authority, while K. E. Løgstrup treats the second-personal relation as one of responsibility rather than command. It is argued that Løgstrup raises a fundamental difficulty for any command view, namely that the reason to act on a command is because one has been commanded to do so, where this cannot provide the right reason for a moral action. This article considers where Levinas should be located in this debate between the two models of second-personal ethics represented by Darwall and Løgstrup. It is suggested that while Levinas’s position reflects elements of both accounts, he is perhaps closer to the command approach, in a way that then makes him vulnerable to Løgstrup’s objections.

Keywords: Emmanuel Levinas, Stephen Darwall, K. E. Løgstrup, second-personal ethics, ethical responsibility, command accounts of obligation

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.