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Post by tbieter » Thu May 29, 2014 6:11 pm

Ethics in Society
by Rick Lewis

"Our cover model this month is gorgeous, pouting Karl Marx. Hailing from sunny Trier, Karl is 196 years old, and his hobbies include reading, beard care and expropriating the ruling classes. The theme of this issue of Philosophy Now is ‘Ethics in Society’, a topic which may well have been close to Marx’s heart, though to be honest most of the articles approach the subject in a completely non-Marxist fashion."

When I first looked at the subjects depicted on the cover - 'Ethics and Karl Marx', I was totally perplexed. I don't associate Marx with ethics either in his writings, or in his personal life.

So I turned to the table of contents in this new issue. I expected to find an article describing the subject of "Marxist ethics." The article on Marx by Roger Caldwell is certainly not about a "Marxist ethics."

So I'm still perplexed by the cover.

Rick, what is the justification for Marx dominating the cover relative to the subject of ethics.

"Marxist Ethics – Conclusion
Many uncertainties surround Marxist ethics. While virtually all Marxists agree on the dialectical materialist foundation for morality and the inevitability of the evolution of moral precepts, they cannot predict what the ethics of a classless society would look like. Marxists label Christian ethics “immoral” because it theoretically maintains the domination of the bourgeoisie over the proletariat; but Marxists cannot conceive of a moral scheme other than the vague idea of the “creation of a new moral man.”

An ethical ideology that includes the inevitability of change and the evolution of morals leaves Marxists free to abandon generally accepted moral standards in pursuit of a greater good—the creation of a classless communist society. This pursuit requires Marxists to dedicate themselves to the cause and to use whatever action they believe will bring about a classless society. Any course of action then, no matter how immoral it appears to a world that believes in an absolute or universal moral standard, is morally good within the Marxist-Leninist worldview."

But, see also

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Post by RickLewis » Fri Jun 13, 2014 4:54 pm

tbieter wrote: Rick, what is the justification for Marx dominating the cover relative to the subject of ethics.[/color]
I don't have such a justification, really. The theme of the issue is "Ethics in Society", but the "theme" articles are on very varied subjects within that, so we couldn't think of any cover image which would encompass them all. Therefore we decided to go instead for a cover based on Roger Caldwell's article about Marx.

However, as Marx wrote about commodities and capitalism, and we have one article on consumer ethics, I did think that there was also a resonance there, and that it would be amusing to have something that looked like a till receipt pinned to a cover consisting of pictures of Marx. Mind you, I'm easily amused. :-)

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