Phil 164 Exam 1 Study Guide
Phil 164 Exam 1 Study Guide Phil 164H
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This 7 page Study Guide was uploaded by Elizabeth on Saturday September 17, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to Phil 164H at University of Massachusetts taught by J. Dixon in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 75 views.
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Date Created: 09/17/16
Phil 164 Medical Ethics I University of Massachusetts, Amherst Professor Dixon Exam 1 Study Guide Yellow Vocabulary Blue Theories and Principles I. What is a Moral Theory a) John Rawls quote theory defines what is right and good and the structure of the theory connects the right and good B. The Main Concepts: The Right and the Good a) Intrinsic Value value depends on features inherent to it (happiness) b) Extrinsic Value value is a matter of how it relates to something that is intrinsically good (money) c) Test why do you want it? When you don’t have a good answer it’s intrinsically good C. Two Main Aims of a Moral Theory a) Theoretical Aim define what is right or wrong, good or bad and explain why (features that make something right/wrong or good/bad are called m oral criteria) b) Practical Aim provide practical guidance on moral issues D. The Role of Moral Principles a) Moral Principles general moral statements under which an action is right or wrong and something is good or bad (should satisfy theoretical and practical aim) (1) Principles of Right Conduct specify conditions for an action’s being right or wrong (2) Principles of Value specify conditions under which something has intrinsic value E. The Structure of a Moral Theory a) ValueBased Moral Theories define and characterize the rightness of actions in terms of considerations for intrinsic goodness (1) Consequentialism, Natural Law Theory, Virtue Ethics b) DutyBased Moral Theories define and characterize the rightness of actions independently of considerations of goodness (1) Called deontological theories (2) Kantian Moral Theories, Prima Facie Duty II. Seven Essential Moral Theories A. Consequentialism theory that according to which consequences of actions are all that matter in determining rightness and wrongness of actions C right action is to be entirely understood in terms of overall intrinsic value of the consequences of the action compared to the overall intrinsic value of the consequences of an alternative actions (compares value of consequences of possible actions) a) Valuebased moral theory b) Comparative Theory rightness depends on how an action compares to its alternative action c) Maximizing Theory rightness means the action’s consequences has at least as much intrinsic value as its alternative action’s consequences d) Impartialist Theory everyone affected counts equally e) Involves Alternative Actions 2. Utilitarianism human welfare or happiness alone has intrinsic value and that rightness of actions depends entirely on how they affect human welfare and happiness a) Maximize the welfare of all individuals (1) Maximizes like all consequentialist theories (2) Impartialist like all consequentialist theories b) Utility Net overall welfare/happiness that would result from an action U An action is right if it would likely produce as high a utility as any other action a) Comparative (like all versions of C ) b) Different versions because there are different definitions of happiness (in the definition of utility) i) Hedonistic Utilitarianism: HU An action is right if it would likely produce at least as high a net balance of pleasure as would any other alternative action 1) Value Hedonism (principle of value for HU) only states of pleasure have positive intrinsic value and only states of pain have negative intrinsic value (everything else only has extrinsic value) 3. Perfectionist Consequentialism states of human perfection (knowledge, achievement) have intrinsic value PC An action is right if it would likely bring about a greater net balance of perfectionist goods than any alternative action *U HU, and PC are versions of Act Consequentialism* 4. Rule Consequentialism the view that rightness depends on whether an action is permitted by a rule whose consequences are best a) Acceptance Value the value associated with rules b) The morality of actions depends on the acceptance value of the various competing rules that are relevant to the situation RC an action is right if it is permitted by a rule whose acceptance value is as high as any other rule applying to the situation B. Natural Law Theory value based moral theory 1. Theory of Intrinsic Value principle of value 4 basic goods a) Human life, human procreation, human knowledge, human sociability b) Each of the 4 basic goods has intrinsic value and its destruction is intrinsically bad 2. The Core NLT An action is right if in performing it one does not directly violate any of the basic values 3. Doctrine of Double Effect DDE An action that would bring about at least one evil effect and at least one good effect is morally permissible if the following conditions are met 1. Intrinsic Permissibilit action apart from its effects is morally permissible 2. Necessity it is impossible to bring about the good effect except by performing the action 3. Nonintentionality the evil effect is not intended 4. Proportionality the evil that will happen is not out of proportion to the good that will 4. Applying Natural Law Theory C. Kantian Moral Theory tries to capture the spirit of the Golden Rule; developed by Immanuel Kant a) Categorical Imperative imperatives that categorically bind us to certain actions regardless of our desires (1) Two examples are the Humanity Formulation and the Universal Law Formulation 1. The Humanity Formulation H an action is right if it treats people as ends in themselves and not merely as a means b) Example= deception is using someone as a means c) H has two parts (1) Treat people as a means (people have worth called dignity) positive requirement (2) Do not treat people as an ends negative requirement 2. Applying Kant’s Humanity Formulation a) Promote ends of others and have the goal of selfperfection when using H 3. The Universal Law Formulation UL An action is right if and only if one can both consistently conceive everything adopting that action and consistently will everyone to do so a) Example: whenever I borrow money I will not pay it back (1) You cannot consistently imagine or with this= wrong (2) Why does not being able to imagine everyone acting this way make something wrong? Kant says because that would mean you’re making an exception for yourself which is immoral b) Example 2: whenever I see someone in need, I will not help them (1) Can consistently imagine (2) Cannot will= morally wrong c) Wide and Narrow Duty (1) Wide= the opposite of an action that I can conceive but not will (can be fulfilled in variety of ways helping others) (2) Narrow= the opposite of an action that I cannot conceive or will (fulfilled in a specific way keeping a promise) 4. Applying the Universal Law Formulation a) Formulate the maxim you are acting on b) Ask if you can conceive of everyone acting on it c) No= wrong; Yes=move to “d” d) Ask if you can will everyone to act on the maxim e) No=wrong; Yes=right D. RightsBased Moral Theory a) Right an entitlement to be free to engage in some activity, to exercise a certain power, or to be provided with some benefit 1. Rights: Some Basic Elements a. Rights holder the party who has the right b. Rights addressee the party whom the rights holder is entitled to certain treatment (someone who made a promise to you) c. Content the action, states, or objects the right concerns d. Strength the relative strength of the justification for a right e. Rights infringement someone going against another person’s rights in a morally justifiable way f. Rights violation someone going against another person’s rights in an immoral way 2. Categories of Rights a) Negative right a right that involves other refraining from an action (free speech others must refrain from interfering with the right) b) Positive right a right that involves the other party providing something to the rights holder (healthcare) c) Moral Rights independent of a legal system d) Human Rights universal rights of humanity (right to life, liberty) e) Legal Rights something that results from a legal statute or governmental activity f) Basic rights universal right that is especially important in the lives of individuals (life) 3. Rights and Moral Theory previously discussed theories are not rights based theories 4. RightsBased Moral Theory a moral theory in which rights are more basic than value, dignity, or right action a) Underdeveloped R an action is right if in performing it either one does not violate another person’s moral rights or (in cases where that is not possible) one’s action is among the best way to protect the most important rights b) Too broad to be practical needs specification of rights 5. Applying a RightsBased Moral Theory a) Challenge is balancing competing rights b) Moral Judgement a skill at discerning what matters the most morally speaking and coming to a moral verdict 6. RightsFocused Approaches to Moral Issues appeals to rights as a basis for taking a stand on the moral issue (different from rights based moral theory see definition above) a) Rights focused= consequentialism, kantian, and natural law theory b) Rights based= rights are more basic than value (not consequentialism, kantian, or natural law theory) E. Virtue Ethics the concepts of vice and virtue are central VE an action is right if it is what a virtuous agent would not avoid doing in the circumstances under consideration a) Virtue trait of character that typically involves dispositions to act, feel, and think in certain ways and is central to POSITIVE evaluations of a person (honesty, courage) b) Vice trait of character that typically involves dispositions to act, feel, and think in certain ways and is central to EGATIVE evaluations of a person (dishonesty, cowardice) 2. Applying Virtue Ethics a) Determine what is a virtue, how a person with that virtue would act, then act that way = the right action b) Sometimes virtues conflict (1) Honesty and Loyalty (a friend tells you to lie for them) c) Moral Judgement is used F. Ethics of Prima Facie Duty (developed by Ross) one has some moral reason to perform the action but the reason in question might be overridden by some other moral action that favors not performing the action 1. The Concept of Prima Facie Duty a) Ex. you have to pick someone up but your child falls ill. You have a prima facie duty to help your child that overrides you prima facie duty to pick the person up 2. Ross’s Theory of Intrinsic Value a) 4 basic intrinsic goods Virtue, Pleasure, Pleasure in Proportion to Virtue, and Knowledge 3. Ross’s Prima Facie Duties Organized into two categories a) Basic ValueBased Prima Facie Duties (things that have intrinsic value) Consequentialist (1) Justice (2) Beneficence (help those in need) (3) Selfimprovement (4) Nonmaleficence (refraining from harming others) b) Basic Prima Facie Duties of Special Obligation Deontological (1) Fidelity (keep promises) (2) Reparation (make amends for past wrongs) (3) Gratitude 4. Applying the Ethics of Prima Facie Duties a) Must use moral judgement G. Social Contract Theory correct moral rules are ones that result from a sort of hypothetical, moral agreement SC An action is right if it is permitted by a set of moral principles that hypothetical agents would agree to under ideal conditions for choosing moral principles a) Rawls views (1) Original position ideal circumstances for coming up with moral principles (2) Agents = free and equal humans who are rational and have self interest (3) Veil of ignorance agents don’t know their place in society, their talents or abilities or anything about themselves (4) Principles Rawls believes two principles will be agreed upon (a) The Principle of Greatest Equal Liberty each person will have equal rights (b) The Difference Principle Social and economic inequalities are to be arranged so that they are both reasonably expected to be to everyone’s advantage and attached to positions open to all 1. Applying Social Contract Theory a. Justice as fairness III. Coping with Many Moral Theories A. Evaluating a Moral Theory 1. Explanatory Power going along with the theoretical aim, the theory should feature principles that explain why actions, persons, etc. are right, wrong, good or bad 2. Practical Guidance going along with the practical aim, the theory should feature principles that are useful in guiding moral deliberation toward correct moral verdicts B. Moral Theory and Moral Illumination 1. Moral theories help sharpen our moral thinking 2. Provide insight and illumination of moral issues 3. Organizes moral thinking Name of Theory Principle of Right Conduct Structure Principle of Value Hedonistic Utilitarianism U C VH Perfectionist Utilitarianism U RC VH Rule Hedonist Utilitarianism U C VP Rule Perfectionist Utilitarianism U RC VP Natural Law Theory DDE NLT 4 Basic Goods Kantian Moral Theory CI Duty Dignity RightBased Moral Theory Moral Judgement R Basic Rights Virtue Ethics Moral Judgement VE Virtues Prima Facie Duty Moral Judgement + 7 prima PFD 4 basic goods facie duties Social Contract Theory 2 Principles of Justice SC Decisions behind Veil of Ignorance Practical Aim Theoretical Aim Underline and Bold = where theory is based
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