Books  Environmental Studies  Philosophy, Ethics & Religion 

Life's Intrinsic Value: Science, Ethics, and Nature

By: N Agar

200 pages, no illustrations

Columbia University Press

Paperback | May 2001 | #118205 | ISBN: 0231117876
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NHBS Price: £29.99 $40/€34 approx
Hardback | May 2001 | #118203 | ISBN: 0231117868
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About this book

Argues that anything living is intrinsically valuable and builds a bridge between the biological sciences and morality to form a new hierarchy of living organisms. Agar analyzes a wide array of historic and contemporary views, from Aristotle and Kant, to E. O. Wilson, Holmes Rolston II, and Baird Caldicot. The result is a challenge to prevailing definitions of value and a call for a scientifically-informed appreciation of nature.

I hope that this book is a harbinger of a new age in environmental philosophy.... Agar's book is an excellent illustration... [that] draws on contemporary work in the philosophy of mind, philosophy of biology, and philosophy of science. -- Gary Varner, "Environmental Ethics"


1. The Psychological View of Intrinsic Value2. Science's Bridge from Nature to Value3. Overlapping Kinds and Value4. Recent Defenses of Biocentrism5. A Morally Specialized Account of Life6. The Contents of Biopreferences7. Species and Ecosystems8. An Impossible Ethic?

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Nicholas Agar is lecturer in philosophy at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand.

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