Cookies help us deliver our services. By using our services, you agree to our use of cookies.

Moral Virtue

Leonard Peikoff

Presented at: TJS 1989

Date: Aug 06, 1989

These three lectures offer a detailed analysis of the virtues of justice and independence, in thought and in action-and of the evil of initiating physical force. Special attention is paid to the precise definition and fundamental validation of these moral principles. Topics include: Man's need of objectivity in moral judgment; the distinction between "deserve" and "earn"; the flaw of retributivism and Utilitarianism in regard to criminal justice; forgiveness, earned and unearned; the trader principle vs. "social justice." The mechanism by which an attack on a man's body negates his mind; the climax of Atlas Shrugged, force as the antithesis of every rational virtue; why forcing the right choice on a man makes it wrong. The metaphysical and epistemological basis of first-handedness; how a parasite can be mentally active; why independence in spirit and in matter are corollaries; four main forms of existential dependence.


Parts: 3

Handout: none


  • e-Store, 2012 (En) - 397 mins - The last segment of this recording features the general Q&A.
  • YouTube, 2020 (En) - 97 mins - Lesson 1: The Virtue of Justice
  • YouTube, 2020 (En) - 68 mins - Lesson 2: The Evil of the Initiation of Force
  • YouTube, 2020 (En) - 110 mins - Lesson 3: The Virtue of Independence
  • YouTube, 2020 (En) - 103 mins - Question Period