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Lecture: "Philosophy and the Science of Human Nature: 12. Utilitarianism and its Critiques"Add to Queue

Course :  Philosophy and the Science of Human Nature

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  • Date posted : Jan 01, 1970


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Professor Gendler begins with a general introduction to moral theories--what are they and what questions do they answer? Three different moral theories are briefly sketched: virtue theories, deontological theories, and consequentialist theories. Professor Gendler introduces at greater length a particular form of consequentialism—utilitarianism—put forward by John Stuart Mill. A dilemma is posed which appears to challenge Mill's Greatest Happiness Principle: is it morally right for many to live happily at the cost of one person's suffering? This dilemma is illustrated via a short story by Ursula Le Guin, and parallels are drawn between the story and various contemporary scenarios. 00:00 - Chapter 1. What Is a Moral Theory? 15:37 - Chapter 2. Introducing Utilitarianism 37:34 - Chapter 3. The Omelas Story

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