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89 Cards in this Set

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Ethics (aka-Moral Philosophy)
The branch of knowledge concerned with answering questions. The effort to understand the nature of morality and what it requires of us - Socrates words, "how we ought to live" and "why"
Minimum Conception of Morality
Core that every moral theory should accept, at least as a starting point
Core Area of Moral Philosophy
Value Theory, Normative Ethics, and Metaethics
Moral Reasoning
Involves at least 2 things: (1) Set of reasons and (2) Conclusions that these reasons are meant to support
Never permissibly broken; violating an absolute moral rule is always wrong
Principle of Utility
The ultimate utilitarian moral standard, which says that an action is morally right if and only if it does more to improve well-being than any other action you could have done in the circumstances.
Act Utilitarianism
The version of Act Consequentialism that says that only well-being is intrinsically valuable, and so says that an act is morally right just because it maximizes overall well-being.
Producing the best possible results
A family of normative ethical theories that share the idea that the morality of actions, policies, motives, or rules depends on their producing the best actual or expected results.
Ethical Egoism
The normative ethical theory that says that actions are morally right just because they maximize self-interest
Begging the Question
Arguing on the basis of a reason that will appeal only to people who already accept the arguments conclusion
Strictly Conscientious Action
Action motivated by the thought or the desire to do one's duty for its own sake, rather than from any ulterior motive.
The direct care & concern to improve the well-being of someone other than yourself
Psychological Egoism
The view that all human actions are motivated by self-interest and that altruism is impossible
All knowing
One who believes that God exists
One who believes that God exists, created the universe, and then refrained from becoming involved in human affairs
Divine Command Theory
The views that an act is normally required just because it is commanded by God and immoral just because God forbids it.
Standard of evaluation. Norms tell us how we should or ought to behave. They represent a measure that we are to live up to.
Those who suspend judgment on the question of whether God exists.
Th belief that God doesn't exist
Moral Agents
One who can guide his/her behavior by means of moral reasoning and so someone who is fit for praise and blame
Soundness (arguments)
A special feature of some arguments. Sound arguments are ones that: (1) are logically valid and (2) contain only true premises. this guarantees the truth of their conclusions
Logically Valid
The feature of an argument that indicates that its premises logically support its conclusions. Specifically, an argument is logically valid just because its conclusion must be true if its premises were all true. Logically valid arguments are those in which it is impossible for all premises to be true while the conclusion is false
Any reason that is used within an argument to support a conclusion
Any chain of thought in which premises are enlisted in support of a particular conclusion
Golden Rule
The normative ethical principle that says that your treatment of others is morally acceptable if and only if you would be willing to be treated in exactly the same way
The branch of philosophy that discusses the nature of reality, what exists, and what does not exist.
Normative Ethics
The area of ethical theory focused on identifying which kinds of actions are right and wrong, examining the plausibility of various moral rules and determining which character traits qualify as virtues and which are vices
Value Theory
The area of ethics concerned with identifying what is valuable in its own right and explaining the nature of well-being
Moral Community
The set of those beings whose interests are intrinsically important. Membership signifies that you are owed respect, that you have moral rights, that others owe you moral duties for your own sake.
Moral Skepticism
The view that there are no objective moral standards. moral skepticism is also sometimes take to refer to the view that we can have no moral knowledge
Ethical Objectivism
The view that there is at least one objective moral standard
Moral Nihilism
The form of moral skepticism that says that the world contains no moral features and so there is nothing for moral claims to be true of.
Ethical Relativism
The view that correct moral standards are relative to individual or cultural commitments. Ethical relativism can take 2 forms: (1) Cultural Relativism and (2) Ethical Subjectivism
Cultural Relativism
The view that an act is morally right just because it is allowed by the guiding ideals of the society in which it is performed and immoral just because it is forbidden by those ideals
Ethical Subjectivism (Individual Relativism)
The view that an act is morally right just because (1) I approve of it and (2) My commitments allow it. An action is wrong just because (1) I disapprove of it or (2) My commitments forbid it.
People whose views differ radically from the conventional wisdom of their society
The trait of being closed-minded and unreasonably confident of the truth of one's views.
Plato was which of the following
Student of Socrates and Teacher to Aristotle
An egoist is someone who
is strongly inclined to pursue his own interests
Glaucon believes that people who act "justly" (morally) do so unwillingly, only because it is necessary but not good in itself
Glaucon believes that the origin of justice is
an agreement or covenant among people
The ring of Gyges story concerns
A shepherd and a king
The ring of Gyges allowed him to
become invisible
The purpose of the ring of Gyges story is to show
that people live justly only because they lack the power to get away with living immorally
Glaucon believes that a person who leads a just life but who for some reason has the reputation of being grossly immoral will nevertheless be happy simply by being just
According to Rachels, one of the best features of moral philosophy is that it is easy to begin with a simple, uncontroversial definition of what morality is
Rachels' definition of "moral philosophy" is that it is
The effort to understand the nature of morality, what it requires of us
The moral principle that it is wrong to use people as means to other people's end supported the decision that baby Theresa's parents and doctors made.
The goal of moral philosophy is to pay close attention to what people like Baby Theresa's parents and doctors actually think about moral issues, not to worry about what is actually true.
The Benefits Argument put forth on p. 3 of Rachels is offered to do which of the following?
Support the decision of Baby Theresa's parents
An argument is sound if
its assumptions are true and the conclusion follows logically from them.
Rachels believes that the idea that we should not use other people as means to other people's ends is vague and needs to be sharpened
Which of the following does Rachels offer as a guideline for making decisions on behalf of someone who is unable to make decision for his/her self.
Ask what that person would want if they could tell us
Anencepahlics, like Baby Theresa, do not meet the technical requirements for brain death as it is currently defined
The argument that we should save as many as we can is offered to do which of the following
Support the decision to separate the conjoined twins, Jodie and Mary
Rachels believes that the court in the conjoined twins case misapplied the principle that human life is sacred so that we should not kill the innocent
Rachels believes that there might be some limited situations in which it is moral to kill and innocent human being
The argument from the wrongness of discrimination against the handicapped does which of the following
Undermines the morality of Mr. Latimer's decision
A slippery slope form of argument is intended to do which of the following
Show that an action is wrong because of what it might lead to
Which of the following is a lesson Rachels offers from the consideration of the cases discussed in this chapter
Moral judgments must be backed up by good reasons
Which of the following does Rachels offer as problems with relying on our feelings alone to make moral decisions
Our feelings can be the product of prejudice, our feelings can be the products of selfishness, and our feelings can be the products of cultural conditioning
Rachels believes that moral judgements are like expressions of person taste
According to Russ Landau, the claim that morality is a human invention and therefore not objective is a claim about
According to Russ Landau, in philosophy, an argument is...
A chain of reasoning consisting of a set of reasons that supports some conclusion
It is impossible for a valid argument to have...
True premises and a false conclusion
There is no such thing as...
A sound argument that is not valid
According to Russ Landau, a moral agent is...
Anyone who is capable of controlling his or her behavior through moral reasoning
The idea that different cultures have different beliefs about morality is a recent discovery that depended on the work of modern anthropologists.
The purpose of the quotation from William Graham Sumner on p. 16 is to
Support the idea that moral rules vary from culture to culture
The view that there is no such thing as universal truth to ethics, but that there are only various cultural codes is called
Cultural Relativism
The five propositions listed on p. 16 are all mutually consistent with each other-i.e., if one is true, then they all must be true or if one is false, then they all must be false, because they each are saying basically the same thing
Cultural relativists believe that no claims about morality are true or false, even within cultural groups-it's all up to the individual to decide for him or herself
The purpose of cultural differences argument is to
Support cultural relativism
The cultural differences argument is valid
The cultural differences argument is sound
The cultural differences argument provides good reason to believe its conclusion
The purpose of Rachels' discussion of the flat earth argument on p. 16 is to
Show why the cultural differences argument is invalid
According to Rachels, if cultural relativism is true, then we cannot say that a society that respects free speech is better than one that doesn't
According to Rachels, someone who believes in cultural relativism cannot say that, because we now allow greater equality for women, our society is better today than it was in the past, because that would be evaluating the past culture by the standards of our present culture
Which of the following are suggested by James Rachels as moral beliefs that are shared by all
Prohibitions against lying
Which of the following does Rachels offer as a reason that people often think there is more disagreement among cultures than there really is about matters of morality
b and c (differences in environment and differences in factual beliefs)
Which of the following does Rachels offer as something we can learn from cultural relativism
That it is important to keep and open mind
Ethical subjectivism is the belief that
Moral opinions are based on our feelings and nothing more
According to an ethical subjectivist, when a person says claims that capital punishment is morally wrong, they are
Expressing their feelings but not stating a fact
According to James Rachels, any claim can count as a reason in support of any judgment
When James Rachels says that moral truths are "truths of reason" he means that
A claim about morality is true if it is backed up by better reasons than the alternatives
Rachels believes that because there are no scientific proofs available in ethics then ethical claims cannot be adequately proven