Professor Robert Lambert Bernasconi: Blind to Justice: Philosophising in the Face of Slavery and Genocide
What do we learn about ethics from the fact that so many seemingly ordinary people were so easily persuaded to participate in the Holocaust? What do we learn about ethics from the fact that generations of White North Americans were able to turn a blind eye to the evils of chattel slavery in their midst? And what was the role of ethics in general and of philosophy in particular in the eventual successful challenge to the system of chattel slavery? Given the effectiveness with which people have been able to justify genocide and slavery on moral grounds what trust can we put in traditional approaches to ethical philosophy?