This clear, well-organized overview of theoretical ethics employs a contemporary tone and framework. Multicultural coverage and attention to college students' moral development help readers relate the material to their own experience and their own moral growth. Both scholarly and practical, this text aims to significantly improve students' ability to make real-life moral decisions.
Table of Contents
Section I The Study of Ethics Chapter 1 Ethics: An Overview What is Ethics? Normative and Theoretical Ethics Philosophy and the Search for Wisdom READING: Plato, "Allegory of the Cave" Metaphysics and the Study of Human Nature Moral Knowledge: Can Moral Beliefs Be True? READING: A.J. Ayer, "Emotivism" Chapter 2 Moral Reasoning The Three Levels of Thinking Moral Analysis, Praxis, and Paradigm Shifts Overcoming Resistance READING: P. Don Premasiri, "The Relevance of the Noble Eightfold Path to Contemporary Society" The Role ofIsandOughtStatements in Ethics Recognizing and Constructing Moral Arguments Avoiding Logical Fallacies Resolving Moral Dilemmas READING: Mary Midgley,Can't We Make Moral Judgments? A Final Word Section II Ethical Relativism Chapter 3 Ethical Subjectivism: Morality Is Just a Matter of Personal Feeling What is Ethical Subjectivism? What Ethical Subjectivism Is Not READING: Stephen A. Satris, "Student Relativism" Jean-Jacques Rousseau: The Roots of Ethical Subjectivism in Romantic Sentimentalism READING: Jean-Jacques Rousseau,Emile Mary Wollstonecraft: Critic of Rousseau's Ethical Subjectivism The Kitty Genovese Syndrome Critique of Ethical Subjectivism Chapter 4 Cultural Relativism: Is Morality Dependent on Culture? What is Cultural Relativism? Distinguishing Between Cultural and Sociological Relativism Social Darwinian Ethics: The Concept of Moral Progress Ruth Benedict: Cultural Relativism as a Protest Against Social Darwinism READING: Ruth Benedict, "Anthropology and the Abnormal" Cultural Relativism and the Moral Community Are Some Cultures More Moral than Others? READING: Ibn Khaldun,The Muqaddimah The Holocaust and Disillusionment with Cultural Relativism Critique of Cultural Relativism Section III Beyond Ethical Relativism Chapter 5 Is Morality Grounded in Religion? Religion and Morality The Divine Command Theory Thomas Aquinas: Natural Law Theory READING: Thomas Aquinas,The Summa Theologica Religion, Natural Law Theory, and Civil Disobedience Civil Religion and Cultural Relativism Religion and the Moral Community God and the Problem of Evil Does Morality Need Religion? Chapter 6 Conscience and Moral Development Ethics and the Study of Human Development Conscience: Culturally Relative or Universal? The Affective and Cognitive Sides of the Conscience Lawrence Kohlberg: The Stage Theory of Moral Development READING: Lawrence Kohlberg,The Philosophy of Moral Development Carol Gilligan: The Care Perspective READING: Carol Gilligan,In a Different Voice James Rest: The Four Components of Moral Behavior Moral Maturity: Moving Beyond Ethical Relativism Section IV Morality as Universal Chapter 7 Ethical Egoism: Morality Is Acting in Our Best Self-Interest What is Ethical Egoism? READING: Thomas Hobbes,Leviathan Psychological Egoism Ayn Rand: Objectivist Ethics and Rational Egoism READING: Ayn Rand,The Fountainhead Ethical Egoism and Laissez-Faire Capitalism Ethical Egoism and the Moral Community Self-Interest and Happiness Critique of Ethical Egoism Chapter 8 Utilitarianism: The Greatest Happiness Principle Utilitarianism and the Principle of Utility Mo Tzu: Utilitarianism as Universal Love Jeremy Bentham: Utilitarianism and Social Reform READING: Jeremy Bentham,An Introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation John Stuart Mill: Reformulation of Utilitarianism READING: John Stuart Mill,Utilitarianism Utilitarianism and the Moral Community Euthanasia and the Principle of Utility: Is Death Always Harm? Critique of Utilitarianism Chapter 9 Deontology: The Ethics of Duty