Self-regardingness concerns acts and virtues focused on benefiting the self, and it is a prominent component of a person’s orientation to the world. Its strength in relation to other-regardingness has been disputed, with most accounts of moral psychology also attributing to us a natural concern for others, while some other accounts describe humanity as primarily or even exclusively egoistic (psychological egoism). Most scholars would agree, however, that self-regarding tendencies can and do coexist with other-regarding ones in various ways. Self-regardingness should not be confused with selfishness, because it does not necessarily exclude concern for others.

In modern ethics, the moral legitimacy of self-regardingness ranges from its celebration in ethical egoism to its complete denial in altruism. Self-regarding acts and virtues are frequently classified as nonmoral, ...

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