Ethics and the News
For Week 4, address the following in a three-page paper:
To recap this week, we talked a bit about ethical theories in general before moving to a specific discussion of some key ethical viewpoints. We learned that utilitarianism and deontological theory both explain human good, but they differ fundamentally on what that good is. Utilitarianism suggests that we should be primarily concerned with the consequences of human actions, and deontological theory focuses on human duties mostly independent of consequences.
We also examined virtue ethics, and the idea that ethics should be more concerned with the kind of character we develop than with what we do. Finally, we returned to our examination of existentialism, and the idea that freedom and ethics are intimately intertwined. We reflected upon ways in which we might dismiss universal ethical values while still being responsible for other people.
As you complete this week’s assignments, think about how these ethical theories might compare to your own personal ethics, and apply them to concrete ethical situations and problems. Next week, we will continue our discussion of how ethics and philosophy apply to the community as a whole by examining social political philosophy.
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