Goods, Interests and the Language of Morals
In his famous and powerful critique of contemporary morals, Alasdair MacIntyre pointed out that the contemporary moral situation should be seen as the outcome of the melting of languages of different origins and backgrounds (MacIntyre 1984/1981). As he understands languages as forms of tradition-carriers, they should be used with a clear recognition of the intellectual frameworks of which they are part. As the concept of tradition was widely rejected by both intellectual and cultural authorities as well as western societies of early modernity, the language of morals has started to be used instead as an alternative way of describing and solving moral issues. Hence, part of MacIntyre’s philosophical project was to make clear distinctions between different and competing traditions, which are embodied in particular moral languages, in order to explain their internal history and their place within the picture of intellectual modernity. My intention here is to follow this path.