Ethics notes chapter 1: Ethics and Moral Life
1. The ethical landscape
o Moral philosophy is another word for ethics.
o Philosophy is the use of critical thinking to answer life's questions.
o Logic is the study of correct reasoning.
o Metaphysics is the
Cog- Transcendentalist: Philosophical; Plato (world of forms), Kant (morality lies in the categorical
imperative). Religious; Divine command theory (morality is in heaven).
, Naturalist (ID morality with a natural property): Hedonism, Utilitarianism; Bent
NOTES JULY 18th
Error Theory Attack Moral feelings
-It is an error to infer that if you feel intensively about something, then it must have an objective
cause in fact.
Feeling pride in your football team
love for a stamp collection
love for a band
NOTES JUNE 6th
definition- an act is right if and only if it is in line with the set code or set of rules whose
widespread acceptance would result in at least as much utility/happiness as any alternative
Rule improves on act in t
NOTES JUNE 1st
Problems with utilitarianism
1. Problems with hedonism: does pleasure or happiness = good?
Ex. The happy torturer, Ex. Pleasure experience machine.
The problem with psychological egoism: is it true that everyone looks towards their own
NOTES MAY 25TH
Philosophy is simply thinking hard about something
Ethics is philosophical study of morality
Branches of philosophy: Ethics, Logic, Metaphysics, Epistemology, Phenomenology,
Aesthetics, Philosophy of religion, Hermeneutics. Philosoph
Notes June 29th
Plato is a cognitive philosophical transcendentalist
Believes in the immortality of the soul
All knowledge is a recollection
Epistemology Knowledge is a justified true belief
World of the forms archetypes
KEY IDEAS from the cave
NOTES JULY 11th
Naturalists think moral values such as goodness are identical to or deductible from, natural
properties such as pleasure and that we can know this through our five senses.
NOTES JULY 13th
Intuitionism/non-naturalism is cognitivist because we can know ,moral truths
It is realist or objectivist because moral properties are out there in the real world independently
It is intuitionist because of our method of knowing is b
NOTES JUNE 8th
Deontological Theories ( Kant and Aristotle)
-Deontological theories are: non-consequentialist.
-This is best defined from the Greek word deon for duty. Thus, deontological theories of ethics
are duty-based theories.
-They concentrate on th
NOTES JUNE 27th
-This is the branch of ethics that takes a step back from the clash between normative ethical
theories and practical ethical applications
- when you discuss practical moral problems and worry about which normative theory is cor
1. Critical reasoning: careful and deliberate analysis of statements
2. Moral reasoning: critical reasonins/thinking applied to ethics.
3. Statement: claiming that something is or is not the case. AKA claim.
4. Argument: a group of statements were one sta
1. Moral objectivism: Morality is a matter of standards that are true for everyone
2. Moral absolutism: Moral rules are to be followed regardless of the circumstances
3. Cultural relativism: Moral rules are relative to a persons culture; there are no obje
NOTES JUNE 15th
2 Questions to find our human virtues
1. What is the good life for human beings?
2. What are the most excellent character traits for achieving the goal of the good life?
Excellence is our telos.(goal or purpose)
Reason is our path to excel