Presentation on theme: "What is a normative theory?. A normative theory is an intellectual tool or system that helps us decide on morality and moral issues. It is designed to."— Presentation transcript:
The only thing that matters are the consequences of an action (Consequentialist Principle), the only consequences that matter is happiness/unhappiness (Hedonic Principle) and the happiness of everyone should be equally considered (Equity Principle).
As an empiricist, he believes that knowledge is a posteriori (comes through experience). Mill thinks that we cannot know in advance whether an action is right or wrong, it is only by predicting what the consequences will be that we can establish what is right and wrong.
What did Bentham think were humanity’s sovereign masters?
The Hedonic Calculus has seven features, which must be used in order to evaluate competing pleasures.
Why does Mill think the Hedonic Calculus is not adequate?
Mill thinks the amount of pleasure we can get from an act is less important than the quality of pleasure we get from an act. He thinks that some pleasures are qualitatively different from one another.
What system does Mill believe sorts out the qualitative problem?
Rule Utilitarians ask what would happen if there was no such law. They believe that laws are in place for the long-term benefit of all. Don’t lie or always keep your promises are rules that generally are in everyone’s best interests.
What is the division within Rule Utilitarianism?
Hard/strong Rule Utilitarians and Weak/soft Rule Utilitarianism.
Don’t lie – explain how strong and weak Rule would interpret this!
Strong Rule – never lie Weak Rule – only lie in extreme cases but the rule should remain.