The concept of impartiality figures in ordinary morality and philosophical discussions of morality in several ways. A virtue in many everyday contexts, impartiality is widely seen as crucial to the very meaning of morality. Moreover, normative theories of various types view impartiality as central to moral justification and see themselves as reflecting, displaying, or building in some way on this value. In recent years, however, some philosophers have challenged the priority that traditional ethical theories place on impartiality. This entry discusses impartiality in everyday life, its deep connection to our understanding of morality, and some philosophers’ rejection of the impartiality that the leading normative theories require.

Impartiality in Everyday Life

To be impartial is to be free from bias or prejudice; to be detached, objective, and ...

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