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Consequentialism by Julia Driver

By Julia Driver

Consequentialism is the view that the rightness or wrongness of activities rely exclusively on their outcomes. it really is probably the most influential, and arguable, of all moral theories. during this ebook, Julia motive force introduces and significantly assesses consequentialism in all its forms.

After a quick ancient advent to the matter, motive force examines utilitarianism, and the arguments of its most famed exponents, John Stuart Mill and Jeremy Bentham, and explains the elemental questions underlying utilitarian conception: what price is to be targeted and the way it truly is to be maximized. driving force additionally discusses oblique different types of consequentialism, the real theories of cause consequentialism and advantage consequentialism, and explains why the excellence among subjective and aim consequentialism is so important.

Including beneficial gains resembling a thesaurus, bankruptcy summaries, and annotated additional analyzing on the finish of every bankruptcy, Consequentialism is excellent for college kids looking an authoritative and obviously defined survey of this significant problem.

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There’s something superior in kind about the higher pleasures since they involve use of rational capacities. Thus, hedonists could agree with the view that reflection is very good indeed, but argue that the goods of reflection are compatible with hedonism: Mill, by holding that reflective pleasures are the best sort, and Bentham, by holding that reflection is instrumentally very important. While, in principle, push-pin may be as good as poetry, simply in terms of its intrinsic value, the pleasures of reflection are more ‘fecund’ – they lead to greater pleasures in the future, since our capacity to reason enables us to better achieve our aims, and achieving our aims is correlated with happiness.

The cases that make satisficing seem plausible, initially, are just cases of disguised maximization. Those in favor of maximization argue that the cases – such as Slote’s wine case, above – are underdescribed. The standard problem is that the examples ignore efficiencies, which are extremely important in determining the true costs attached to an option. 18 This does not make one a satisficer, it simply recognizes that there are other costs aside from losing money. To use the shiraz case, it would be irrational to choose the shiraz under those circumstances.

The other side of the hedonistic equation is that pain is the one intrinsic bad. Keep in mind this doesn’t mean that it is never good – just that when it’s good it is only good instrumentally, as a means to some other end. Like the positive side of the equation, this claim has been roundly attacked as failing to account for harms that a person is not aware of, and that don’t involve a feeling of pain. Technically, of course, in a bad situation the good may involve reducing pain rather than generating a positive state, or an absolutely positive state.

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