Philippia Foot's Theory Of Ethics And Moral Beliefs By Philippa Foot

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A trolley is moving down a track. The trolley can not be stopped, but it a nearby switch is able to move the trolley from one track to another. One track has five people, and the other has one. Flipping the nearby switch will cause the one person to die while leaving the switch alone will mean the five people will die. The question is: what would you do? A philosopher by the name of Philippa Foot was the person who came up with this dilemma. It is famously known as the “trolley problem” and is used to test people’s moral duty and show aspects of moral judgement. Philippa Foot was a philosopher of ethics and morality and is famous for her work in these areas. Foot’s early education, philosophical beliefs, contributions to philosophy as well as her later …show more content…
In her book Moral Beliefs, she states that the received virtues, which is our courage, justice, and temperance, are all refined rationally. Essentially, she says it is rational to act in accordance with these things. We would act in favor of these virtues because this is how a human decides what is right or wrong. She attempts to show that moral ideas are grounded in our moral life. About 15 years after writing this, she wrote an essay titled Morality as a System of Hypothetical Imperatives, and in this essay, a sudden change had occurred in her beliefs in “why be moral”. In this essay, she states that all people have a reason to refine or cultivate these virtues of courage, temperance, and justice and that whatever the person values or desires must have a contingent motivation in these virtues. Foot essentially attempts to show that our values are chosen by oneself, not grounded by nature. Our values are something we choose to believe in and now something that is predetermined. A lot of people were surprised by this thesis, as it followed a certain remnant of Kant. Again, close to 30 years later, Foot changes her views

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