rss_2.0Ethics & Bioethics FeedSciendo RSS Feed for Ethics & Bioethics & Bioethics Feed research on business ethics of SMEs in the V4 countries<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The aim of this study is to evaluate the level of select ethical issues in Visegrad Four (V4) countries (Czech republic, Slovakia, Poland, and Hungary) and quantify the differences in the attitudes of entrepreneurs in the field of business ethics in these countries. Empirical research was conducted in June 2022 in the V4 countries. Data collection was carried out by the renowned external company MNFORCE using "Computer Assisted Web Interviewing" (CAWI Research Method), according to the questionnaire created by the research team. The total number of respondents was 1,398, of which 347 were from the Czech Republic, 322 from Slovakia, 381 from Poland, and 348 from Hungary. Statistical hypotheses were verified using descriptive statistics, chi-square, and Z-scores at a α = 5% significance level. The preliminary results of this study can be evaluated as follows: The ethical level of entrepreneurs in V4 countries is high because the dominant group showed a positive attitude towards the defined issues in the field of business ethics. The attitudes of these entrepreneurs showed that they not only perceived the importance of business ethics, but also implemented and promoted these practices in managerial decision-making. Moreover, they feel good when they behave ethically, which is a significant motivating factor. In this study, it was found that Hungarian SMEs presented the highest level of business ethics. In contrast, the Czech Republic presented the lowest level of perception and enforcement of business ethics.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue for deafness – a marvellous opportunity or imposed dependence?<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The paper focuses on the question of whether it is morally permissible to use reproductive technologies to select children with congenital deafness. I review the arguments that have been presented to support the claims that the lack of hearing is not overall bad, that disability is caused by social discrimination rather than impairment, that the community of deaf people gives its members plenty of opportunities to lead a happy life, and that procreative decisions need not improve the world. I argue that although the claims are, to a certain extent, reasonable, they fail to establish the conclusion that selecting for deafness is morally permissible. I further argue that the decision to select a deaf child is morally wrong because it results in imposed and needless dependency, that the happiness of a deaf child is conditioned by their confinement to a relatively small community, and that the deaf parents who reject their child’s potential biculturalism are motivated by questionably self-regarding reasons.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue and peace as consequences of human nature?<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The issue of human nature is very complex and elusive, and mankind has been trying to unveil its elements since the beginnings of any philosophical reasoning. Whether they were questions of ontology, gnoseology, or ethics, it has been an uneasy task to uncover the complexity of the term. This article concentrates on finding ideas that support the existence of human nature and consequently searches for its possible ethical implications. I focused on the traditional issues of good vs evil, especially in terms of dichotomy between committing violent acts and waging wars in contradiction to creation of conditions for peaceful and just societies. In the article, I compare various ideas on human nature and analyse their potential in unveiling its ethical implications. I also comment on the possibility of war and peace being consequences of human nature and its connection to our disposition of being moral subjects.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue of individuals with dementia, palliative care, and futile treatment<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Case studies are used to reflect on the treatment of patients with dementia hospitalized at the Geriatric Department of the Faculty hospital in Prešov, emphasizing human dignity in clinical practice. The discussion is focused on the palliative care of patients with severe dementia. The biomedical method, which respects human dignity is defined by means of inductive, deductive, and normative bioethical methods. They make it possible to provide guidelines for palliative care and individualized prognosis strategy. An analysis of health status of individuals with severe dementia enables us to offer a clinical definition of purposeful treatment based on normative justice and decision-making that reflects the patient’s best interest, thus respecting their dignity. An evaluation of a patient’s care is based on a biomedical method that considers the dementia stage. Applying a bioethical model in a holistic context preconditions the human rights of patients with dementia.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrueätopluk Štúr’s criticism of Nietzsche’s vitalism<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Svätopluk Štúr is a strong critic of strands of German thought that emphasize the will to power as an organizing principle of human society. Štúr is particularly critical of Nietzsche’s vitalism, which Štúr believes culminated in national socialism and the destruction of the Second World War. This paper describes and examines Štúr’s criticism of a number of German thinkers and focuses especially on Štúr’s criticism of Nietzsche. Štúr criticizes Nietzsche’s emphasis on life over knowledge. Štúr offers a different philosophy of life grounded in the dignity of human beings and the social consequences of ideas and actions. This paper concludes by examining what Štúr means by dignity in terms of a moral agent and as opposed to Nietzsche’s emphasis on vitalism.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue will, moral responsibility and automatisms<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Some determinist approaches to free will opine that the human brain is subordinate to physical laws not fully under our control. This results in a weakening of the concept of the personal autonomy and moral responsibility of humans. Were we to acknowledge this assumption, we might consider automatic machines unable to influence the thoughts and intentions from which our actions take root. The key issue lies in the fact that an individual does not consciously engage in particular actions (automatisms), which challenges the concept of free will in an individual’s complex behaviour. Despite this issue, not all automatisms that lack conscious will can be viewed as lacking free will. The paper examines whether classical philosophical concepts may weaken the strict determinist approach, which seeks to deny that individuals have free will due to the existence of automatic actions.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue and marketing perspectives on surrogacy tourism<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>When an individual is unable or unwilling to become a parent the natural way, he/she can avail of a surrogate mother. Furthermore, when the surrogate pregnancy takes place in a foreign country, the practice is popularly referred to as ‘surrogacy tourism’ or ‘birther tourism’, which is the main topic of this research. In contrast to existing research most of which is confined to the medical angle, here we look at how marketing makes surrogacy tourism more accessible but concomitantly promotes unwanted ethical and marketing practices, even if inadvertently. On one hand, rigorous promotion of surrogacy tourism has successfully spread the word and has made such option available to individuals who would have otherwise been unaware of such opportunity. On the other hand, excessive marketing has resulted in unethical, illegal and in some cases, unhealthy medical practices in which, service providers, clinics and doctors often participate, but on which there appears to be scant research. This analysis, therefore, has two-fold implications: first, the findings can be extended to several other related professions, such as the medical community, administrators, law enforcement agencies and most importantly, potential ‘parents’; secondly, it can aid administrators and regulators tighten extant loopholes in the system, and thereby, provide a more robust and safer option for surrogate tourists.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue human hubris: Intelligence in nonhuman animals and artefacts<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>100 years ago, the editors of the <italic>Journal of Educational Psychology</italic> conducted one of the most famous studies of experts’ conceptions of human intelligence. This was reason enough to prompt the question where we stand today with making sense of “intelligence”. In this paper, we argue that we should overcome our anthropocentrism and appreciate the wonders of intelligence in nonhuman and nonbiological animals instead. For that reason, we study two cases of octopus intelligence and intelligence in machine learning systems to embrace the notion of intelligence as a non-unitary faculty with pluralistic forms. Furthermore, we derive lessons for advancing our human self-understanding.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue ethos of the fire service in the context of postmodern changes<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Professional involvement and the moral life of individuals and professional groups, especially those with high social prestige, such as firefighters, are linked by the category of “ethos”. Since the ethos of this service is today significantly influenced by multifaceted and dynamic ideological and existential transformations, it seems necessary to analyse the nature of this impact. Therefore, it seems that postmodernity brings with it ideological tendencies, which, by destroying the traditional preferences established so far, do not propose anything in their place. These include, among others: the crisis of personal and community identity, secularisation processes, the “axiology” of consumerism that is clearly being shaped nowadays, the depreciation of the meaning of work, and, finally, irrationalism and the crisis of the meaning of life.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue ideas about democracy and the importance of education in the work of T. G. Masaryk<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The main aim of the paper is to analyse T. G Masaryk’s ideas about the importance of education in democratic systems. In particular, the study analyses the ideas that Masaryk associates directly or indirectly with the nature of democracy or with the improvement of the democratic system through changes in the education system. The first part of the paper traces the basic aspects of democratic systems in his work that immediately condition ideas about the importance and role of education in democratic systems. The second part analyses the importance of education in the reproduction of national values, the role of the arts and humanities in the formation of the “democratic man”, and the significance of education of broad social strata and political authorities in democratic systems.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue teachings of Classical Antiquity philosophers in the poetry of Saint Gregory of Nazianzus<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>The paper focuses on the ethical teachings of Classical Antiquity philosophers in the poetry of Saint Gregory of Nazianzus, especially on the parallels between the author’s work and the Cynics and the Stoics. The syncretic nature of Gregory’s work, reflected in the assimilation of the teachings of ancient philosophical schools and the then expanding Christianity creates conditions for the explanation and highlighting of basic human virtues. Gregory of Nazianzus’ legacy also draws on the teachings of such philosophers as Plato and Aristotle, but he always approaches them from the perspective of a strictly Christian worldview. He understands philosophy as a moral underlying basis from which one can draw inspiration for a virtuous and happy life. Gregory thinks that philosophy cannot harm Christians in the pursuit of a virtuous life. Nevertheless, Christian teachings and God are the highest authority. They stand above all philosophical schools or ideas advanced by specific philosophers. Gregory’s moral poetry thus directs his readers, if they are to deserve eternal life, to follow the commandments, which is possible only if one lives a practical and virtuous life.</p></abstract>ARTICLEtrueří Menzel’s treatment of sacrifice<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>The paper explores the philosophical treatment of sacrifice in four of Jiří Menzel’s films of the 1960’s, <italic>Closely observed trains</italic> (<italic>Ostře sledované vlaky</italic>), <italic>Capricious summer</italic> (<italic>Rozmarné léto</italic>), <italic>Mr Balthazar’s death</italic> (<italic>Smrt pana Baltazara</italic>), his short film contribution to the anthology film of the New Wave, <italic>Pearls of the deep</italic> (<italic>Perličky na dně</italic>), and <italic>Larks on a string</italic> (<italic>Skřivánci na niti</italic>). The paper argues that Menzel problematizes romanticized versions of messianic sacrifice as they all too easily disregard the moral significance of mundane relations. By analysing the treatment of sacrifice in each of these films, the paper makes a case for the significance of Menzel’s treatment of sacrifice for current philosophical debates.</p></abstract>ARTICLEtrueín Gavlovič on moral education: Enlightenment ideas in baroque literature?<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>The work of Hugolín Gavlovič belongs is part of the most influential literary and didactic heritage of 18<sup>th</sup> century literature in the region of contemporary Slovakia. Even though Gavlovič was not a systematic moral philosopher, the role and importance of ethics in his literary work is significant. He contributed greatly to the debate on moral education, which was (in the context of that time) linked to the fulfilment of God's will and to the accomplishment of a good life. In his extensive poetic work <italic>Valaská škola mravúv stodola</italic> [<italic>Shepherd´s school of morals</italic>], the author not only formulated moral norms but, inspired by classical Greek philosophy, he also defined them in the wider ethical context of virtue, morals, and human nature. In this study, the historical context of his work, marked by the literary and cultural transition to the Enlightenment era, will be presented, concepts related to the understanding of good life (as a goal of moral education) will be identified, and the possibility for further philosophical and ethical analysis of Gavlovič’s work will be offered (through a reflexion of Aristotle’s thoughts referred to in <italic>Valaská škola</italic>). Overall, the paper offers an original point of view on how to interpret the thoughts of Hugolín Gavlovič from the perspective of ethics. This has been, despite the impact of his work, rather omitted.</p></abstract>ARTICLEtrue Crime and punishment<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>When we read <italic>The Trial</italic> and <italic>In the Penal Colony</italic> together, we read about the logic of law, crime, punishment, and guilt. Of course, we cannot know the law, or, as Kafka writes, we cannot enter the law. I interpret the idea in this way: the law opens a gate to the truth. Alas, no one can enter the law, or come to know the truth, as Kafka says. The consequences are devastating: one cannot know the name of one’s own crime, which is to say guilt is eternal and permanent; nothing can absolve us. Only one solution exists. Josef K. in <italic>The Trial</italic> should have committed suicide like the Officer in “Penal Colony.” That is to say, perhaps, that you always are your own judge and executioner. Guilt cannot be doubted and thus, you are doomed. Both narratives are cruel and ruthless in their own way in their moral pessimism.</p></abstract>ARTICLEtrue’s animals between mimicry and assimilation<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>In Kafka’s literary world, several animals emerge; they belong to an odd and enigmatic fauna, on the edge between violence and artistry but also between stillness and music; according to the writer, scripture represents both the fault and the punishment waiting for the solitary artist. Animals, especially depicted as hordes of small mice or other rodents, also hint to the heterogeneous structure of the Self, who doesn’t manage to keep under control all the divisions in his ambiguous dentity. Through opposition between the point of view of the subject, who considers his own isolation as indispensable to carry on writing, and the multitude of escaping small animals, Kafka also expresses and experiences his own impossibility of “description” (<italic>Beschreibung</italic>). In the meantime, Kafka’s animals embody the creatural and unconscious sources of imagination the writer draws from that constantly escape his own control and willingness, pushing forwards into an unknown and inhospitable region, towards the wasteland, the eternal winter that can be identified with scripture. In writing, a deep metamorphosis of the Self takes place. Kafka shares this belief with one of the writers he most admired and considered his master, Gustave Flaubert, who firmly thought that, while writing, one loses his previous identity, becoming someone else, even assuming the appearence of the “otherness”. We can state that Kafka’s imagery of animals takes to the extreme the paradox and ambiguity the idea of writing relies on, also reproducing, especially, in his hybrid creatures, the feeling of uncertainty and lack of safety of the assimilated Jewish artist.</p></abstract>ARTICLEtrue bitter diagnostic of the ultra-liberal human: Michel Houellebecq on some ethical issues<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>The paper examines the ethical dimensions of Michel Houellebecq’s works of fiction. On the basis of keen diagnostics of contemporary Western culture, this world-renowned French writer predicts the destructive social consequences of ultra-liberalism and enters into an argument with transhumanist theories. His writings, depicting the misery of contemporary man and imagining a new human species enhanced by technologies, show that neither the so-called neo-humans nor the “last man” of liberal democracies can reach happiness. The latter can only be achieved if humanist values, shared by previous generations and promoted by the great 19<sup>th</sup>-century authors (Balzac, Flaubert), are reinvented.</p></abstract>ARTICLEtrue and moral personhood<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>Can a good man do evil things? This paper offers a moral philosophical reading of Hilary Mantel’s novels <italic>Wolf Hall</italic> and <italic>Bring up the bodies</italic>, focusing on Mantel’s fictional portrayal of Thomas Cromwell as a good person, in spite of his growing involvement in the dirty work of Henry VIII. The narrative resists interpretations of Cromwell as someone corrupted by power. It also thwarts attempts to read his deeds as results of a deficient capacity for sympathetic imagination, which has been a focalized moral flaw in contemporary moral philosophical discussions of literature. By thus resisting moralized readings of his character, the novels invite intensified attention to the complex dynamics of character and circumstance.</p></abstract>ARTICLEtrue and culture at the time of<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>The article is devoted to the theme of the moral condition during the Black Death epidemic in Florence within Boccaccio’s group of young people in his Decameron. The disease in the region of Florence caused many existential and moral tragedies. A group of young people transferred the joy of life and moral principles to the gardens outside the city of the disease. They describe different moral and philosophical thoughts in their songs at the end of each day.<sup>2</sup> These songs represent ten parts of nature and form the basis on which the allegorical character of the works is further developed. They are also carriers of the laws of nature and natural wisdom.</p></abstract>ARTICLEtrue motifs in the literary work of Karel Čapek<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>This text presents an assessment of the literary work of Karel Čapek from a perspective that has not yet been discussed. It focuses on analysing Čapek’s works from the viewpoint of their possible inspiration by bioethical issues. Čapek’s philosophy and the powerful ethical charge of his texts tend to be associated with his interest in pragmatism, a subject to which he, however, took an individual and critical approach. One of the most important categories of his way of thinking is <italic>life</italic>. In his prose works and plays we therefore see motifs that may be associated with the thematic definition of bioethics. These are questions concerning the value and quality of human life, issues concerning the dehumanizing impact of science and technology, as well as reflections upon the moral dimension of man’s relationship to nature and also to the relationship between people and animals. Čapek’s work may therefore provide inspiration from the perspective of the history of the gradual formation of the bioethical point of view.</p></abstract>ARTICLEtrue“True peace of mind” allegorical narrative as a tool of moral (trans)formation in J. A. Comenius’s<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p><italic>Labyrinth of the world and paradise of the heart</italic> belongs to the jewels of Czech literature. The author – Jan Amos Comenius – consciously uses allegorical narrative for didactic purposes – mainly for his own moral self-reflection in the face of suffering. His method proved to be very effective. The goal of this text is to explore the potential of the literary method from the perspective of moral (trans)formation. The key question is: How did Comenius convey the moral content of his “lesson” in the <italic>Labyrinth</italic>? Or in general: How does allegorical narrative work as a tool of moral (trans)formation – both for the reader and author of the text. Specifically, this paper attempts to show several literary functions of the <italic>Labyrinth</italic> as a tool of moral (trans)formation: the therapeutic function, the emphatic function, the imitation function, the organizational function, the performative function and the plot function.</p></abstract>ARTICLEtrue