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In her first book in a decade, Jacobs offers a brilliant and original study of the ethical basis of public life. Written in the form of a platonic dialogue, Systems of Survival argues that human behavior is governed by two distinct ethical systems. The first is a guardian syndrome, which arises from behavior we share with other animals--foraging for food and protecting our territories. The second syndrome is a commercial syndrome, arising from trade and the production of goods, an endeavor unique to human beings. Conflicts occur, according to Jacobs, when the precepts appropriate to the guardian syndrome are imposed on the commercial syndrome, and vice versa.
1. Armbruster's Summons
2. A Pair of Contradictions
3. Kate on the Commercial Syndrome
4. Why Two Syndromes?
5. Jasper and Kate on the Guardian Syndrome
6. Trading, Taking, and Monstrous Hybrids
8. Casts of Mind
9. Armbruster on Systemic Moral Corruption
10. Syndrome-Friendly Inventions
11. Hortense on Castes and Flexibility
12. Pitfalls of the Methods
13. Hortense's Defense of Moral Flexibility
14. Plans and Champagne
Appendix: The Commercial and Guardian Moral Syndromes