Analysis Of Charles Taylor's Utilitarianism

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Ethics is a branch of philosophy that, at its core, seeks to understand and to determine how human actions can be judged as right or wrong. There are multiple variations and subclasses of ethical theories. These theories that help us with decision making can be challenged or critiqued. In particular Mill’s Utilitarianism, an ethical theory that promoted the greatest happiness for the greatest number, was criticized by Charles Taylor in his article The Diversity of Goods. The article written by Charles Taylor argues a utilitarian and consequentialist conception of morality leaves out essential aspects of human experience that are integral to our moral lives.
Utilitarianism was founded by Jeremy Bentham. Bentham’s utilitarianism was defined
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For example, Charles Taylor, a philosopher, argues that utilitarianism has been a severe distortion of our understanding of our moral thinking. The main argument from Taylor in his work, The Diversity of Goods, is that Utilitarianism was not able to grasp every moral concept or problem. Taylor essentially argued that Utilitarianism contained various errors in its ethical theories. Taylor stated that “one of the big illusions which grows from either of these [formalism and utilitarianism] reductions is the belief that there is a single consistent domain of the ‘moral’, that there is one set of considerations, or mode of calculation, which determines what we ought ‘morally’ to do (Taylor 132).” Taylor highlights that Utilitarianism only has one system of moral codes that deems whether something is right or wrong. Within that statement, Taylor is saying that there are flaws that can produced from that one dimensional view of morality. This one sided perspective of morality doesn’t allow for the equality of each individual because it is so …show more content…
Individuals choose not to oppose these standards because they are hard to object. Taylor realizes these principles result in a system where some moral objectives obtained by the individual cannot be fulfilled because of these set societal norms. Taylor affirms these immoral ideals by stating “a consequentialist theory, even one which had gone beyond utilitarianism, would still be a Procrustes bed (Taylor 144).” In this passage, he relates the guidelines of Utilitarian ideals to Procrustes bed. Procrustes bed is an allusion to a legend of Greek mythology in which a bandit, Procrustes, forcibly stretched or amputated captured travelers to make them conform to the length of his bed. Taylor relates this myth to the structure of consequentialism and utilitarianism because of the strict guidelines that force individuals into an unnatural scheme. Taylor once again addresses the unspoken parts of the current structure of utilitarianism and claims “it would once again make it impossible for us to get all the facts of our moral and political thinking in focus. And it might induce us to think that we could ignore certain demands because they fail to fit our favored mode of calculation. A

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