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Ifeanyi Menkiti’s Notion of Personhood and the Problem of Human Rights

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dc.contributor.author Erzuah, E.
dc.date.accessioned 2022-10-06T08:49:17Z
dc.date.available 2022-10-06T08:49:17Z
dc.date.issued 2020-07
dc.identifier.uri http://localhost:8080/handle/123456789/38336
dc.description MPhil. Philosophy en_US
dc.description.abstract Motivated by the problem of human rights, this thesis engages in a critique of Ifeanyi Menkiti’s notion of personhood. According to Menkiti (1984), his conception of personhood is characteristic of a society that gives priority to individuals’ communal duties and recognises individual rights as secondary. This led Kwame Gyekye (1992 & 1997) to criticise Menkiti’s conception of personhood that in his (Gyekye) estimation fails to take individual rights seriously. Gyekye in turn was criticised that he fails to understand Menkiti’s conception of personhood and that, a charitable interpretation of Menkiti’s notion of personhood reveals that Menkiti does not threaten individual rights (Wiredu; see Eze & Metz, 2015, Molefe, 2016 & 2017 and Ikuenobe, 2018). In the light of the fact that Menkiti’s conception of personhood recognises individuals such as criminals and social deviants in the lived-world as non-persons; and these individuals appear not to be treated well in as much as their rights and dignity claims as human beings are not taken seriously, this thesis, in examining the debate on personhood between Menkiti and Gyekye aims to find an answer to the question of how human rights and dignity were safeguarded within Menkiti's conception of personhood. How is it ensured in Menkiti’s conception of personhood that an individual human such as a criminal ends up not being treated in an undignified manner by members of a community? The thesis findings reveal that, Menkiti’s conception of personhood appears to consider that the actions of individuals are what go into securing human rights and dignity. And that whilst individuals ought not to lose their basic moral worth as beings with dignity when they fail to act in a morally appropriate manner, they owe it to themselves as moral agents to live morally good lives so that the consequences of their actions do not ruin their rights and dignity status. en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher University of Ghana en_US
dc.subject Human rights en_US
dc.subject Ifeanyi Menkiti en_US
dc.subject Basic Moral Worth en_US
dc.title Ifeanyi Menkiti’s Notion of Personhood and the Problem of Human Rights en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US


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