Utilitarian Ethics - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

Loading...

PPT – Utilitarian Ethics PowerPoint presentation | free to download - id: 49cf6e-OGUyM



Loading


The Adobe Flash plugin is needed to view this content

Get the plugin now

View by Category
About This Presentation
Title:

Utilitarian Ethics

Description:

Utilitarian Ethics Act and Rule Utilitarianism Principle of the greatest good MORALITY IN THE MODERN WORLD Area 1: The Relationship between Religion and Moral Values ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

Number of Views:724
Avg rating:3.0/5.0
Slides: 25
Provided by: Wyr1
Category:

less

Write a Comment
User Comments (0)
Transcript and Presenter's Notes

Title: Utilitarian Ethics


1
Utilitarian Ethics
  • Act and Rule Utilitarianism
  • Principle of the greatest good

2
MORALITY IN THE MODERN WORLD
  • Area 1 The Relationship between Religion and
    Moral Values
  • Introduction (pp. 1-7)
  • The Euthyphro Dilemma Are actions good simply
    because the gods command them or do the gods
    command certain actions because they are good?
  • Religious Morality (pp. 8-21)
  • Moral values are grounded in religious belief
  • The interpretation of sacred writings guided by
    faith, tradition and/or reason
  • Utilitarian Ethics (pp. 29-33)
  • Act and Rule Utilitarianism
  • Principle of the greatest good
  • Kantian Ethics (pp. 34-37)
  • Categorical imperative
  • Universal maxim
  • Respect of persons

3
Introduction
  • This is a viewpoint independent of religious
    belief (though religious people can use it).
  • It is focussed on the consequences of the action.
  • There are different types of Utilitarianism Act,
    Rule and Preference.
  • Utilitarianism is based on the Principle of
    Utility or the greatest good.

4
Lets presume it is wrong to kill a baby
  • You have invented a time machine!
  • You press the button and find yourself alone in a
    room with baby Hitler.
  • What are some of the possible consequences if he
    chose to kill the baby
  • If it stopped WW2 would it make it right?

5
The Principle of the greatest good, or utility.
  • An action may be said to be conformable to the
    principle of utility when the tendency it has to
    augment the happiness of the community is greater
    than any it has to diminish it.
  • J Bentham
  • Rewrite this in your own words please.

6
Problems with Consequences
  • How can you know for sure what the consequences
    of the action may be?
  • Often the consequences of actions are not in your
    control.
  • Furthermore, the consequences you want from an
    action may not be what anyone else wants.

7
Utilitarian Consequences
  • Utilitarians say that our moral choices should be
    based on getting the greatest good (or
    pleasure/happiness) for the greatest number of
    people.
  • This is called The Principle of Utility (or the
    greatest good).

8
Check your learning
  • Utilitarianism focuses on the consequences of
    actions
  • The Principle of the greatest good or utility

9
Act Utilitarianism
  • Where the probable consequences of your actions
    decide whether your actions were right or wrong.
  • If your actions are likely to lead to the
    greatest good for the greatest number, they are
    probably right.
  • Add an example of an action to your notes that
    demonstrates this point.

10
Rule Utilitarianism
  • This is when you design rules that allow the
    greatest good for the greatest number.
  • Add an example of a rule to your notes that could
    be considered to be Utilitarian.
  • The problem here is that we have to agree on what
    a good outcome is so that the rules allow the
    greatest good for the greatest number.

11
Issue School Uniform
  • In many schools, uniform is a rule.
  • What are the beneficial consequences of school
    uniform? Who for?
  • Could school uniform be seen as leading to the
    greatest good for the greatest number?
  • Would a Utilitarian support the wearing of school
    uniform?

12
Preference Utilitarianism
  • This applies the idea of the greatest good for
    the greatest number only to those involved in the
    situation so the right thing to do is what
    maximises the happiness of those involved
    according to their preferences.

13
Problems with Utilitarianism?
  • Who decides what pleasure or happiness is?
  • Can you ever fully predict all the possible
    outcomes of a moral decision?
  • Who decides what to take into account when trying
    to work out if a decision produces happiness?
  • What about the minority? Is this fair?
  • Would it lead to a sacrifice society? What
    kind of society would it lead to?

14
Check your learning
  • Act Utilitarianism
  • Rule Utilitarianism
  • Preference Utilitarianism
  • Problems with Utilitarianism?

15
Christianity on Utilitarianism
  • Christian morality often seems to Utilitarian in
    nature the idea of sacrifice.
  • Death of Jesus as example in Christian belief.
  • The idea of self-sacrifice is often encouraged in
    Christianity
  • The issue for Christians is what happens to the
    minority.

16
Christianity on Utilitarianism
  • Justice is Christian love using its head,
    calculating its duties, obligations,
    opportunities, resources on this basis is
    becomes plain that as the love ethic searches
    seriously for a social policy it must form a
    coalition with utilitarianism. It takes over
    from Bentham and Mill the strategic principle of
    the greatest good for the greatest number.
  • Joseph Fletcher

17
Buddhism on Utilitarianism
  • Outcomes are very important to Buddhists.
    Actions have kammic consequences and doing the
    right thing is about maximising kamma for as many
    as possible.
  • Buddhists however would be wary of sacrifice
    the Buddha tried asceticism (starving himself) to
    find enlightenment but found nothing.

18
Buddhism on Utilitarianism
  • Buddhists work for the needs of others and
    compassion is a central belief.
  • The Buddha left his wife and child to seek
    enlightenment this could be seen as a
    Utilitarian decision.
  • Skilful actions is similar to Preference
    Utilitarianism.
  • However Buddhists would be concerned about what
    Utilitarianism would mean for the minority.
    Buddhism seeks happiness for all beings, not some
    at the expense of others.

19
Viewpoint Independent of Religious Belief on
Utilitarianism
  • Utilitarianism is itself a moral theory
    independent of religious belief.
  • Most modern Utilitarians like Peter Singer argue
    for a form of preference Utilitarianism.
  • Singer argues that you should not only take into
    account the possible consequences of a moral
    decision, but also what the consequences are for
    those involved in the situation.

20
Viewpoint Independent of Religious Belief on
Utilitarianism
  • Utilitarianism is itself a moral theory
    independent of religious belief.
  • Most modern Utilitarians like Peter Singer argue
    for a form of preference Utilitariansm.
  • Singer argues that you should not only take into
    account the possible consequences of a moral
    decision, but also what the consequences are for
    those involved in the situation.

21
Viewpoint Independent of Religious Belief on
Utilitarianism
  • For Singer, what matters is that our decisions in
    the first place are based on whats best for
    those immediately affected by the outcome of a
    decision.
  • The way of thinking I have outlined is a form of
    utilitarianism. It differs from classical
    utilitarianism in that the best consequences is
    understood as meaning what, on balance, furthers
    the interests of those affected, rather than
    merely what increases pleasure and reduces pain
    The utilitarian position is a minimal one, a
    first base that we should reach by universalising
    self-interested decision-making.
  • Singer

22
Check your learning
  • Christianity on Utilitarianism
  • Buddhism on Utilitarianism
  • Viewpoints independent of religious belief
    (v.i.r.b.s) on Utilitarianism

23
MORALITY IN THE MODERN WORLD
  • Area 1 The Relationship between Religion and
    Moral Values
  • Introduction (pp. 1-7)
  • The Euthyphro Dilemma Are actions good simply
    because the gods command them or do the gods
    command certain actions because they are good?
  • Religious Morality (pp. 8-21)
  • Moral values are grounded in religious belief
  • The interpretation of sacred writings guided by
    faith, tradition and/or reason
  • Utilitarian Ethics (pp. 29-33)
  • Act and Rule Utilitarianism
  • Principle of the greatest good
  • Kantian Ethics (pp. 34-37)
  • Categorical imperative
  • Universal maxim
  • Respect of persons

24
Extension exercises
  • How would an Act/Rule/Preference Utilitarian
  • feel about Crime and Punishment?
  • How would an Act/Rule/Preference Utilitarian feel
    about the Purpose of Punishment?
  • How would an Act/Rule/Preference Utilitarian feel
    about Capital Punishment?
About PowerShow.com