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43 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
____ is the systematic endeavor to understand moral concepts and justify moral principles and theories.
the study of ethics is:
prescriptive and practical
why is ethics prescriptive?
we try to answer the questions of "what should be" or "what ought we do?" while other disciplines are descriptive, answering questions of "what is the case?" or "what will we do?"
why is ethics practical?
it is the study of practical action rather than knowledge or the nature of being
A ___________ of ethics is one which identifies a standard for evaluating the moral action of all people
universal normative theory
list 3 examples of UNTs
1. aristotle's virtue theory
2. kant's deontology
3. mill's utilitarianism
a theory which evaluates an action in terms of the end it produces is called a _____
____________ is a telelogical moral theory in which the rightness of action is determined by the value of the end of that action
___________ _______
_________ stipulate that some ends are intrinsically valuable and therefore the right action is the one most likely to promote these ends
consequentialist moral theories
an object has ____ value if it is valuable independent of any additional use or purpose it may have
some examples of objects with intrinsic value may be:
happiness, pleasure, good health
if an object has intrinsic value, everyone should have reason to promote it. in this case the objecy will be _____ valuable
an object has ______ value if it is valuable as a means to promoting some other end.
some examples of objects with instrumental value are:
money, skills, power
if an object is ______ valuable only those who value some end to which it is a means will find it valuable
how is money instrumentally valuable
a. money is valuable to those who wish to purchase other things, but if one has no desire for things which can be purchased money ceases to be valuable
instrumentally valuable goods tend to be ____ valuable because their value depends upon the ends of a particular individual
any ___ ___ of ethics holds that an action is morally right if and only if it is intended to produce greater utility than any alternative action
utilitarian theory
all utilitarian theories are ____ theories, though there is some disagreement about ___ utilitarianism
consequentialist, rule
utilitarians make ___ arguments about the ___ value of some end. (pleasure, happiness, preference satisfaction)
empirical, intrinsic
bentham's _____ ____ is "that principle which approves or disapproves of every ation whatsoever according to the tendency which it appears to have augment or diminish the happiness of the party whose interest is in question"
hedonistic utilitarianism
for _____, happiness is crudely summarized as "pleasure and absense of pain"
______ _______ takes sentience to be a ground for moral consideration
hedonistic utilitarianism
_____'s version of utilitarianism attempts to ovetcome the so-called "doctrine of swine" of hedonistic utilitarianism.
john stuart mill
mill distinguishes between:
higher pleasures and lower pleasures
what are higher pleasures
the pleasures only available to rational man which are intellectual and moral in nature, and worth incomparably more to anyone who has experienced it
lower pleasures
the pleasures which we share with animals, the physical pleasures, and the pleasures which mill thinks will be worth less to anyone who has experienced higher pleasures
a major criticism of utilitarianism is that it sometimes leads to ____ ____ ____
imtuitively implausible conclusions (sometimes its morally obligatory to kill one innocent person to save the lives of five.)
one way utilitarian theorists have attempted to respond to this criticism is by distinguishing between
act utilitarianism and rule utilitarianism
define act utilitarianism
the classical utilitarian doctrine that an act is right if and only if it is chosen to lead to the best possible consequences
define rule utilitarianism
the doctrine that an act is right if and only if it is compatible with a moral rule about such action. the moral rule is to be chosen on the basis of its expected utility-maximizing consequences
kant argues for a moral theory in which the moral law recommends certain rules that hold with ___ ____ regardless of the expected consequence of a given action
absolute necessity
kants theory is often said to
make the "right" prior to the "good"
kant argues that reason alone gives us....
moral duty as an end
kant argues that moral motivation is central to the study of right and wrong because the only thing that is intrinsically valuable or ________ is the ___ __
good in itself, good will
in kants theory, a persons moral ______ is the sole criterion for determining whether an action is right or wrong
one can only act morally if one is motivated by ___
reason to follow the moral law(rather than disposition or a desire for advantage) following the moral law by accident doesnt count
kant argues that some imperatives are categorical, as a result, they are _____, ____, and ____
obligatory, absolute, universal
two formulations of the categorical imperative:
1. act only according to the maxim which you could consistently will to become the universal moral law

2. treat other people always as ends in themselves and never as simply means
kant argues that the rules of morality are broken down into two types of moral duty:
perfect and imperfect duties
define perfect duties
are our constant moral obligations which people can chose to fulfill at restraint or "negative" rules. some examples are never assault or never steal
define imperfect duties
are more general obligations which people can choose to fulfill at their own discretion. they are generally rules about helping or positive rules such as give to charity and contribute to the welfare of others. are left to the discretion of the individual
some have argued that kants theory makes no room for the ______, or actions which go above and beyond the usual requirements of duty, such as martyring yourself to save others