Anarchism and the virtues

Franks, B. (2010) Anarchism and the virtues. In: Franks, B. and Wilson, M. (eds.) Anarchism and Moral Philosophy. Palgrave Macmillan: Basingstoke, UK, pp. 135-160. ISBN 9780230580664

Full text not currently available from Enlighten.

Publisher's URL:


The chapter describes a distinctive anarchist ethic based on contemporary scholarship, but also drawing from the historical canon. It locates this identifiable moral theory outside of the locale of consequentialist or deontological thinking where it is most usually placed, and instead proposes that anarchism is more consistent with virtue ethics. To this end, the paper compares anarchism with the account of the virtues found in Alasdair MacIntyre’s influential text "After Virtue". A couple of criticisms of a virtue account of anarchism are described and assessed. These criticisms are based on an apparent incompatibility between the virtues’ commitment to community norms and the necessity for a framing teleology and anarchism’s presumed rejection of these. Replies are explored to show that a virtue account of anarchism is a coherent, defensible alternative to the main Kantian versions.

Item Type:Book Sections
Keywords:Anarchism, virtues, MacIntyre, practices, prefiguration
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Franks, Dr Benjamin
Authors: Franks, B.
Subjects:J Political Science > JC Political theory
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BJ Ethics
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Interdisciplinary Studies
Publisher:Palgrave Macmillan
Related URLs:

University Staff: Request a correction | Enlighten Editors: Update this record