P.F. Strawson, Freedom and Resentment
o Determinism, approximately (from last time): All human actions are caused (determined)
by physical laws.
o Pessimism: If determinism is true, then no one is morally responsible for anyt
Lecture 11 Discussion Notes - Bennet
Bennet: Two parts of our own psychology that can conflict
1. Our moral beliefs
a. Stable over time
2. Our sympathy, or emotions that help us tend to do right by others (fellow feelings)
a. Guilt, pity
Lecture 20: Aristotle, Nichomachean Ethics
o Intellectual excellence is acquired through instruction
o Moral excellence is acquired through training, habituation.
o The virtues do not come by nature (or against nature), b
Lecture 19: Galen Strawson, The Impossibility of Moral Responsibility
o First, what is moral responsibility? Contrast two cases:
1. You are walking down the sidewalk when suddenly an overly friendly dog breaks off
Frankfurt Alternate Possibilities and Moral Responsibility
The Principle of Alternate Possibilities
o (PAP) A person is morally responsible for what he has done only if he could have done
o Why is this? Seems right about many c
Lecture 7: What Makes Right Acts Right?
o A theory of right and wrong actions that is not consequentialist.
o It does not hold that the rightness or wrongness of (at least some) actions is a matter of
Lecture 14: Hare on Slavery
-fill in from ppt-What is slavery?
o A legal status: that of slave. Defined by disabilities and liabilities imposed by law on
those called slaves.
o Features essential to slavery in its modern usage:
Lecture 16: Kant II
Kants Theory of Value
o What is Kants theory of value (good and bad)?
o The only thing unconditionally good is a good will.
o Unconditionally good means two things:
1. Intrinsically good (good in itself)
2. Good in eve
Moral Principles and Problems
Lecture 6: Utilitarianism
What Utilitarianism Is: (According to Mill)
1. A theory of value (good and bad)
a. Pleasure or happiness is good. Pain or unhappiness is bad.
i. Slightly more complicated theory of value than
Something is intrinsically good if it is good in and of itself; non-derivatively good; good
independent of the consequences; good as an end in itself.
E.g. Pleasure, health, knowled
Moral Problems and Principles
Lecture 4: Psychological Egoism
What is Psychological Egoism?
o First: It is a psychological claim about human nature (not a moral claim, about right or
o Specifically, it is a claim about human motivation. The
Singer on the Demands of Morality
Overpopulation- Overpopulation and the Quality of Life by
o Commonplace Idea about what justice is: To speak the truth and to pay your debts
o Socrates View: Justice is intrinsically and instrumentally good.
o Commonsense View (in contrast to Socrates view): Justice in itself is disagreeable and to
Lecture 10: Locke on Property
Two Approaches on Property Rights
o Indirect utilitarian justification (Schmidtz):
o There will be good consequences of respecting an institution of private property.
o Even though this constrains our promot
Lecture 7: Singer on the Demands of Morality
1. Assumption: Suffering and death from lack of food, shelter, medical care are bad.
2. Principle: If it is in our power to prevent something bad from happening, without there
Hobbes, The State of Nature
Hobbes on the State of Nature and Laws of Nature
o Thesis: Equality in Body and Mind
o By equality, Hobbes does not mean moral equality. Not like Declaration of
Independence. All men are created equal
o He mea
Lecture 8: Schmidtz on Singer
David Schmidtz begins with a stray remark
o It is a near-miraculous fact that I lie in a society that can support full-time intellectuals
o This is not irrelevant to the crux of the paper
o You should consid
PHIL 160 Final Review
Epictetus Value Theory:
o Shamefulness is intrinsically bad
o Living in accordance with your rational faculty is good
o Death isnt bad.
o When resentment turns creative, we have slave revolt
Lecture 16: Epictetus (Stoicism)
What is in our Power
o Our faculties do not contemplate (judge) themselves
o Grammatical faculty can judge whether a sentence is grammaticalwhat words to write
but not whether you should write or not.
Lecture 12: The Conscience of Huckleberry Finn
Sympathy and (Bad) Morality
o Bad morality: Any moral view that is seriously misguided
o Note implication: Some moral views (moralities) are misguided, even evil.
o Subjectivism, nihilism wou
John Finnis argues against homosexuality on the grounds that it involves treating one's
body as an instrument for one's own gratification rather than actualizing or
experiencing a common good, He also argues that because
Thomson and Abortion
A. A definition:
1. An Argument: a list of statements, the premises, advanced in support
of another statement, the conclusion.
B. Ways of evaluating arguments:
1. Assessing the relation between premises and conclusion (a
The principle/intention/reason behind an action
A principle of action that you give yourself
It contains your intended action and the reason you are doing it
The feature of a maxim that indicates that every rational per
Notes: Platos Republic
what is justice? not a straight forward answer: to speak the truth and pay your debts
but there are different circumstances: take insanity, is it still right to do as they ask?
drought cant produce moisture, heat can produce cold
PHIL 160: Moral Principles and Problems
Professor Daniel Jacobson
Office: 2263 Angell Hall
Office hours: Mon 2:10-4:00 and by appointment
All readings are available through CTools. Lecture notes will also be posted but be
Daggers Argument: Persuasive Elements and Flaws
Merriam-Webster defines citizenship as the state of being vested with the rights, privileges, and duties of a citizen. This definition hits at the core of Daggers argument: nations
provide benefits (rights
Lecture 19: Why Be Moral?
o Commonplace idea about what justice is: To speak the truth and to pay
o Suppose your friend has loaned you his weapon, and when he comes
back to get it, frantically, you see that he
Lecture 24: Nietzsche, On the Genealogy of Morality
The Slave Revolt in Morality
o What is resentment? Moralized anger: anger at some (perceived) wrongdoing.
o Why does Nietzsche use the French: ressentiment?
o The beginning of the slave
Lecture 15/16: Kant
Morality and Rationality
o What reasons do you have to act morally?
o Compare: What reason do you have to go to college?
o A practical reason: something that justifies action (going to college)
o Look for an aim of you
Lecture 17: Epicurean Ethics (Hedonism)
Epicurus has a hedonist theory of value
o The only thing that is intrinsically valuable is pleasure, everything else has value (if it
does) only as a means to pleasure.
o However, this view of natur