VII—Good Samaritans and Good Government


  • Meeting of the Aristotelian Society held at Senate House, University of London, on 23 January 2012 at 4:15 p.m.


In this paper I review and provide a qualified defence of Samaritanism—Christopher Heath Wellman's novel approach to the old-fashioned problem of political obligation. I outline Wellman's theory, clarifying the details, and defend an amended version against a variety of objections concerning, successively, an alleged conflation of duties of care and beneficence, a difficulty concerning the distinction of perfect and imperfect duties, a problem deriving from the ‘particularity requirement’, and related issues deriving from the international applications of Samaritan values.