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Subject Philosophy

DOI: 10.1111/b.9781405106795.2004.x


E thics, political philosophy The agreement reached through joint negotiations by contending parties after each party makes some concessions from its initial demands. Compromise is based on the premise that for each party cooperation in dealing with the issues in question is better than the breakdown of the relationship. Surrender of some goals is seen by each as helping to secure other and perhaps more important goals. When compromise in this sense applies to conflicts arising from rationally irreconcilable ethical commitments, it is called moral compromise. Moral compromise is necessary for people within a society where conflicting moral principles and interests prevail. Otherwise, a peaceful and non-coercive agreement on a single course of action by proponents of opposing principles cannot be achieved. However, because moral compromise involves sacrificing basic principles and can damage the integrity of the moral agents, it normally carries a derogatory sense. Compromise always involves a tension between uniting with people with different moral convictions and maintaining loyalty to one's principles and oneself. This tension leads to discussion of how we should understand the role of moral principles and integrity. “Compromise is both something ‘reached’ and a ‘way of reaching’. As something reached, a compromise is a certain type of outcome of a conflict or disagreement; as ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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