The ‘Introduction’ provides an overview of ethics and the ethical climate. People's ethical ideas are manifested in their tendencies to accept or reject routes of thought and feeling, and they may not recognize these in themselves, or even be able to articulate them. Yet such tendencies make up the ethical climate, and they rule the social and political world. For many ethical traditions across the world, the central concern was the state of one's soul. Today, people tend not to care so much about the state of their souls: they tend to think that modern constitutional democracies are fine regardless of the private vices of those within them.