9780199286973

The Demands of Consequentialism

by
  • ISBN13:

    9780199286973

  • ISBN10:

    0199286973

  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2005-12-22
  • Publisher: Clarendon Press

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Summary

According to consequentialism, we should always put our resources where they will do the most good. A small contribution to a reputable aid agency can save a child from a crippling illness. We should thus devote all our energies to charity work, as well as all our money, till we reach thepoint where our own basic needs, or ability to keep earning money, are in jeopardy. Such conclusions strike many people as absurd. Consequentialism seems unreasonably demanding, as it leaves the agent no room for her own projects or interests. Tim Mulgan examines consequentialist responses to this objection. A variety of previous consequentialist solutions are considered and foundwanting, including rule consequentialism, the extremism of Shelly Kagan and Peter Singer, Michael Slote's satisficing consequentialism, and Samuel Scheffler's hybrid moral theory. The Demands of Consequentialism develops a new consequentialist theory, designed to be intuitively appealing, theoretically sound, and only moderately demanding. Moral choices are first divided into distinct realms, primarily on the basis of their impact on the well-being of others. Each realm hasits own characteristic features, and different moral realms are governed by different moral principles. The resulting theory incorporates elements of act consequentialism, rule consequentialism, and Scheffler's hybid theory. This original and highly readable account of the limits of consequentialism will be useful to anyone interested in understanding morality.

Table of Contents

Part One. Simple Consequentialism
Introduction
3(22)
Options for Consequentialism
25(28)
Part Two. Collective Consequentialism
Rule Consequentialism
53(51)
Other Forms of Collective Consequentialism
104(23)
Part Three. Individual Consequentialism
Sub-Maximizing Consequentialism
127(18)
Hybrid Moral Theories
145(24)
Part Four. Combined Consequentialism
Two Moral Realms
169(41)
The Morality of Reciprocity
210(25)
The Morality of Necessity
235(25)
The New Theory
260(35)
Appendix. Proof for Chapter 6 295(2)
Bibliography 297(13)
Index 310

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