PHIL 102 Lecture Notes - Normative Ethics, Applied Ethics, Consequentialism

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26 Feb 2013
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1. Standard Model of Ethics
2. Consequentialism
!-hedonism
!-perfectionism
!-indirect consequentialism
Ethics
two main branches;
!-applied ethics; dilemmas
!-normative ethics; theoretical, theories of right actions
!!-1) will justify the rightness of actions
!!-2) supposed to explain practical reasoning
!!!-motivational role
with theoretical reasoning, you end up with a fact (fact, fact, theory, fact)
!-your keys aren’t in your pocket, you know if they’re not in your pocket they’re on
!the table, so they’re on the table
with practical reasoning, you end up with an action; literally doing something
!-usually one fact is a belief, one a desire, then an action (fact, fact, action)
!-eg. it’s raining, you don’t want to get wet, you get an umbrella
!-can have fact, fact, norm, action
!-eg. see a homeless person, you have a sandwich, the ‘norm’ or ‘rule of thumb’ is
!that you like helping people, so you give them the sandwich
!-this can all be subconscious
!!-these norms could be rules of thumb, but if they’re consistent then are
!!principles or moral principles
!!-norms play a desire-like role. must be motivating!
Ethical Theories
Consequentialism: do what will promote the most overall goodness
-a theory of right action
-views overall goodness in an impartial way (not the overall goodness for you)
-needs to be completed with a theory of ‘goodness’--> intrinsic value
!-eg. pleasure rather than pain (hedonism)
!!-utilitarianism = consequentialism + hedonism
!-eg. knowledge, friendship, achievement, are all intrinsically good; can’t be
!reduced to pleasure and pain (perfectionism)
first ‘wrinkle’
-subjectivism
!-the right action is the one that is expected to promote the most good
-objectivism
!-the right actions actually produces the most good
-eg. if you try to be with your friend to cheer them up, but seeing you makes them sad
-subjectivism would say you did the right thing, objectivism would say you didn’t
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Document Summary

Your keys aren"t in your pocket, you know if they"re not in your pocket they"re on the table, so they"re on the table. Usually one fact is a belief, one a desire, then an action (fact, fact, action) Eg. it"s raining, you don"t want to get wet, you get an umbrella. Eg. see a homeless person, you have a sandwich, the norm" or rule of thumb" is that you like helping people, so you give them the sandwich. This can all be subconscious: standard model of ethics, consequentialism. Ethics two main branches; with theoretical reasoning, you end up with a fact (fact, fact, theory, fact) with practical reasoning, you end up with an action; literally doing something. Consequentialism: do what will promote the most overall goodness. Views overall goodness in an impartial way (not the overall goodness for you) Needs to be completed with a theory of goodness"--> intrinsic value.

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