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Journal for the Study of Religion

On-line version ISSN 2413-3027
Print version ISSN 1011-7601


PROZESKY, Martin. Homo ethicus: Understanding the human nature that underlies human rights and human rights education. J. Study Relig. [online]. 2014, vol.27, n.1, pp.283-301. ISSN 2413-3027.

The themes of human rights and human rights education in South Africa's multi-cultural society are central to the work of Cornelia Roux. This article discusses the human reality and ethics underlying those themes, using an approach based on a view of human nature. It has six sections, starting with an introduction that states the aims of the article, central to which is fostering debate and research with the goal of enhancing the ethical quality of society. The second section gives grounds for holding that significant ethical enhancement is achievable. Then there is a third section setting out a view of ethics, understood as practice as distinct from the academic discipline of that name. This is followed by a section containing an updated working hypothesis about homo sapiens stemming from earlier research by the author on human nature, arguing that it exhibits a drive to maximize well-being. The fifth section links the hypothesis to the ethical dimension of human nature, while the final section provides short accounts of a range of research questions related to ethical enhancement where further research is needed.

Keywords : applied ethics; human nature; maximizing well-being; moral experience; further research.

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