Intrinsic Value

In ethics, ascribing intrinsic value to something means that it is valuable for its own sake rather than as the means to some end. This is a crucial concept in many moral judgments: for instance, in many cultures, human life is considered to have an intrinsic value that does not need to be justified by, for instance, the economic value of the person's labor. Similarly, preservation of the natural world may be conceived of as having an intrinsic value without regard to the economic or other advantages that may be gained from it. Intrinsic value is contrasted to extrinsic value, which refers to assigning value to a thing according to how it may be used: if intrinsic value considers the value a thing may have ...

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