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    Gertrude Himmelfarb, The de-moralization of society - From Victorian Virtues to Modern Values

    Johnathan R. Razorback
    Johnathan R. Razorback

    Messages : 7710
    Date d'inscription : 12/08/2013
    Localisation : France

    Gertrude Himmelfarb, The de-moralization of society - From Victorian Virtues to Modern Values Empty Gertrude Himmelfarb, The de-moralization of society - From Victorian Virtues to Modern Values

    Message par Johnathan R. Razorback le Jeu 16 Juil - 21:55




    "Stigmatization is the other side of the coin of virtue. You can’t have a set of virtues, a system of values, without having a corresponding system of stigmas."

    "The idea of virtue goes back to antiquity, and it varied in the course of time. The ancient virtues were not the Christian virtues, and they were certainly not the Victorian virtues. But what was common to all of these virtues, to the very idea of virtue, was a fixed moral standard – a standard by which all people at all times and under all circumstances would be judged. Today we have abandoned that idea of virtue and have adopted instead what we now call “values”. Value is a subjective, relativistic term; any individual, group, or society may choose to value whatever they like. One cannot say of virtues what one can say of values, that anyone’s virtues are as good as anyone else’s, or that everyone has a right to his own virtues. This shift from virtues to values represents the true moral revolution of our time."

    "There was a drop in the crime rate of nearly fifty percent in the second half of the 19th century; again in dramatic contrast to the crime rate in our own times which in the past thirty years has risen ten-fold. The low crime rate was a reflection of the Victorian virtues – work, temperance, orderliness, and responsibility.

    It was also a reflection of the degree to which this ethos had been internalized. We tend to think of stigma and sanctions as being externally imposed by society, by law and coercion. But in fact, what was most characteristic about Victorian England was the internalization of these sanctions. For the most part they were accepted by the individual willingly, even unconsciously; they were incorporated in his superego, as we would now say."

    "This period saw an enormous expansion of private charities, especially in the 1880’s and 1890’s. Most of them, but not all, were religious based. Some were denominational, some ecumenical, still others testified to a generalized religious spirit. Charity itself was regarded as a religious virtue. Some philanthropists, like Charles Booth, were not religious in any orthodox sense, but adhered to the Positivist’s “Religion of Humanity”."
    -Gertrude Himmelfarb, Learning from Victorian Virtues, RELIGION & LIBERTY: VOLUME 5, NUMBER 4, JULY 20, 2010:


    « La question n’est pas de constater que les gens vivent plus ou moins pauvrement, mais toujours d’une manière qui leur échappe. »
    -Guy Debord, Critique de la séparation (1961).

      La date/heure actuelle est Dim 17 Jan - 6:44