Hedonism - Utilitarianism one should pursue the greatest...

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Hedonism – the view that the ethical standard is pleasure (happiness) & the absence of pain (unhappiness); the good is that which produces the most pleasure (happiness) or the least pain (unhappiness) There are some ancient hedonists who simply speak in terms of pleasure and pain; some modern hedonists simply speak of happiness & unhappiness; some interchange both; for the purposes of lecture, we’ll speak in terms of happiness/unhappiness Hedonists follow a teleological theory; working for pleasure. Egoistic Hedonism – one should pursue one’s own pleasure (or happiness) o Egoistic hedonists is the term ascribed to hedonists of ancient Rome and Greece o Egoistic hedonism died down with the prevalence of Christian ethics during the middle ages; however; it made a comeback in the form of utilitarian hedonism during the late 1600s early 1700s; that was
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Unformatted text preview: Utilitarianism one should pursue the greatest amount of pleasure (or happiness) o Lets try an example: If I do Act A, I get 50 units of happiness while 10 other people get a total of 5 units of happiness per person for a total of 100 units of happiness for everyone combined. However, if I do Act B, I lose 50 units of happiness but those 10 people gain 30 units of happiness per person (300 units of happiness) for a total 250 units. If ur a utilitarian, u would choose act B. o Fun Fact: Jeremy Benton defined 1 unit of pleasure as a hedon. o An interesting historical question: How come, since egoistic hedonism was so dominant in ancient Rome & Greece, why did it make a comeback in such an unselfish form (utilitarianism)? Siegmann might say Christianity is responsible; 1000 years of unselfishness is wrong may have accounted for it....
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This note was uploaded on 09/30/2011 for the course PHILOSOPHY PHI2600 taught by Professor Siegmann during the Spring '11 term at FIU.

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