Masters Thesis

In defense of honor: an analysis of honor codes and their significance to current western culture

Honor is an often misinterpreted term because honor is not clearly understood. Honor is frequently defined as acting correctly or being honest and fair. The reality is honor is not defined as merely doing the right thing nor is it about being respectful; these situations are more a matter of conscience. Honor, unlike moral conscience, involves a more external element. There must be a reward for doing a task in such a way as to be acknowledged as correct. It is here that we find honor at its core. Not the act of doing right, rather it is the pursuit of being honorable. To be worthy of respect in the eyes of people within a community who set the expectations. This thesis focuses on the philosophical motivation that exists for assenting to codes of honor and why honor codes remain significant in current Western society.