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The Urbanist Ethics of Jane Jacobs

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Abstract:

This article examines ethical themes in the works of the celebrated writer on urban affairs, Jane Jacobs. Jacobs' early works on cities develop an implicit, 'ecological' conception of the human good, one that connects it closely with economic and political goals while emphasizing the intrinsic good of the community formed in pursuit of those goals. Later works develop an explicit ethics, arguing that governing and trading require two different schemes of values and virtues. While Jacobs intended this ethics to apply to all forms of productive activity, it is particularly illuminating when applied to her own urban ideas and activism.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/13668790802559668

Affiliations: Department of Philosophy, Seattle University, Seattle, WA, USA

Publication date: 2008-10-01

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