The Ethics of Identity

by Kwame Anthony Appiah

Start Free Trial


Download PDF PDF Page Citation Cite Share Link Share

Last Updated September 5, 2023.

The Ethics of Identity by Kwame Anthony Appiah looks at issues such as culture, individuality, and identity. Appiah gives an in-depth account of individuality and identity. The type of life a person should live is a topic that has been widely discussed by philosophers from Aristotle to John Stuart Mill. The author also discusses ethics and how they link moral responsibilities with the adherence to groups categorized by society. In other words, he looks at how ethics connects a person's individuality and identity. Appiah supports the view that there is a strong link between the two.

The author bases his arguments from different schools of thought. He analyzes varying opinions regarding individuality and identity. Other topics that are discussed in the book include the role of diversity, moral obligations, and human rights. Appiah argues that diversity only becomes valuable when individuality is present. He also presents his argument against existentialism and states that the theory is misguided. Furthermore, the author claims that there has been a misapprehension when it comes to cultural diversity and culture. He holds the view that preserving culture is something that should not be done, as culture is something that continuously changes. Instead, individual autonomy should be valued, as it brings diversity.

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access

Critical Essays