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Word Count: 797
Consider for a moment the course typically taken in a class discussion A person states that he is an egoist or a relativist or an absolutist These various terms are used to classify an individual according to his moral philosophy Nietzsche has an important objection to these simplistic definitions Shall we still speak this way today May we do so Nietzsche 463 There are difficulties in this simplistic approach to classifying an individual The first is that an individual is not so easily crammed into a verbal box Sartre would say that this is a way of objectifying the person under consideration To say that I am an egoist or that another student is an altruist is to imply that egoism or altruism is the essential nature of the person and that other considerations fade into the background and become unimportant under this veil of the persons ethical philosophy It is to equate me with egoism or to equate the other student with relativism But I am more than Bob the egoist I am also Bob the philosopher I am Bob the student I am Bob the coffee drinker The name Bob points to a definition that is of necessity abbreviated When a stranger asks me who I am it is not possible for me to provide a complete description But when I describe a few opinions actions and relationships I do so hoping that she may view me beyond the narrow limits imposed by what I can tell her quickly It may be convenient to say But for this discussion we consider only your ethical theory But besides objectifying the individual this is overly simplistic because it ignores the subtle shades of meaning which exist among these philosophies I think of myself as an egoist because I believe that the very nature of an individual grants him certain rights and that these rights do not include claims on the rights of
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