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Moral Minimalism in American Indian Land Claims

Moral Minimalism in American Indian Land Claims ARTICLES burke a. hendrix This is an essay about Indian claims for the return of historically stolen lands, written from the perspective of a "Western" academic moral philosopher. I want to try to outline points of agreement and disagreement between Indian and Western moral conceptions and to seek common ground on which land claims can be more clearly evaluated and justified to both sides. To foreshadow my conclusions, I will argue that Indian nations seem morally entitled to the return of a significant land base and that there are good reasons for the United States to re-open consideration of Indian claims on a more serious and pluralistic basis than is now occurring or than occurred during the late Indian Claims Commission. On the other hand, the United States seems morally prohibited from transferring lands held by individual non-Indians in most circumstances.1 Or at any rate, that is what I will argue--the test of the argument's effectiveness, as always, is whether it actually proves convincing to those who read it. moral minimalism Many academic philosophers assert that all moral questions have correct answers.2 Few, however, believe that they have full and direct access to those answers, and many disagree http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The American Indian Quarterly uni_neb

Moral Minimalism in American Indian Land Claims

The American Indian Quarterly , Volume 29 (3) – Dec 30, 2005

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Publisher
University of Nebraska Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2005 The University of Nebraska Press.
ISSN
1534-1828
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

ARTICLES burke a. hendrix This is an essay about Indian claims for the return of historically stolen lands, written from the perspective of a "Western" academic moral philosopher. I want to try to outline points of agreement and disagreement between Indian and Western moral conceptions and to seek common ground on which land claims can be more clearly evaluated and justified to both sides. To foreshadow my conclusions, I will argue that Indian nations seem morally entitled to the return of a significant land base and that there are good reasons for the United States to re-open consideration of Indian claims on a more serious and pluralistic basis than is now occurring or than occurred during the late Indian Claims Commission. On the other hand, the United States seems morally prohibited from transferring lands held by individual non-Indians in most circumstances.1 Or at any rate, that is what I will argue--the test of the argument's effectiveness, as always, is whether it actually proves convincing to those who read it. moral minimalism Many academic philosophers assert that all moral questions have correct answers.2 Few, however, believe that they have full and direct access to those answers, and many disagree

Journal

The American Indian Quarterlyuni_neb

Published: Dec 30, 2005

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