Re human beings capable of acting from a concern for others that is not derived from a concern for their own welfare?

Please angle this from an ethics and economics point of view

Added on 05.04.2015 15:47
Please use the below texts and use as a basis for arguments in the essay:

Michael Sandel, What Money Cani??t Buy (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2013), Chapter 3*

Virgil Storr, i??The Impartial Spectator and the Moral Teachings of Markets,i?? The Oxford Handbook of Freedom (Oxford University Press, forthcoming)*

Vernon Smith, i??The Two Faces of Adam Smith,i?? Southern Economic Journal Vol. 65,
1998 (on JSTOR)

Joseph Henrich, et. al., i??In Search of Homo Economicus,i?? The American Economic
Review Vol. 91, 2001 (on JSTOR)

Joseph Henrich, et. al., i??The Weirdest People in the World,i?? Behavioral and Brain
Sciences Vol. 33, 2010*

Oliver Williamson, i??The New Institutional Economics: Taking Stock, Looking Ahead,i?? Journal of Economic Literature Vol. 38 (on

Also refer to these core texts below

Geoffrey Brennan and James Buchanan, The Reason of Rules (Liberty Fund, 2003)*
G.A. Cohen, Why Not Socialism? (Princeton University Press, 2009)
Gerald Gaus, The Order of Public Reason (Cambridge University Press, 2010)
Russell Hardin, Morality Within the Limits of Reason (University of Chicago Press, 1990)
F.A. Hayek, The Fatal Conceit (University of Chicago Press, 1988)
Deirdre McCloskey, The Bourgeois Virtues (University of Chicago Press, 2006)
Debra Satz, Why Some Things Should Not Be for Sale (Oxford University Press, 2010)
David Schmidtz, Rational Choice and Moral Agency (Princeton University Press, 1995)

*Available on

Economists have in recent years paid increasing attention to moral philosophy. Likewise, philosophers have engaged with economists on issues of public policy and deployed the tools of economics within philosophical debates. This module examines the relationship between economics, defined both as the study of market activity and as rational choice theory, and ethics, defined both as normative theorizing and as the descriptive study of morality. These four definitions give us four areas of inquiry to explore over the course of the semester, described on the following table:

Economics Studies Markets Economics Studies Choice
Normative Ethics I
Are property rights just?
Which exchanges are acceptable? II
When should we follow norms?
Are all ends equally rational?
Descriptive Ethics IV
How do markets affect norms?
How do norms affect markets? III
When do we follow norms?
How do norms develop?

The module places a heavy emphasis on cell II, studying the use of rational choice theory in moral philosophy, but will range over topics in all the cells. It will likewise emphasize the joint study of institutions in both ethics and economics, serving as a supplement to topic coverage in other courses. Finally, while dealing with questions of political philosophy the primary focus will be on questions of social morality and the role of informal norms in shaping social outcomes.