Three ways of "doing" ethics

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  • Three ways of 'doing' ethics
    • Normative Ethics
      • Was around until the end of the 19th century.
      • Asks what things are good and bad and what behaviour is right or wrong.
      • Decides how people ought to act.
        • These decisions may come from an established group or culture, such as the Christian tradition.
      • Example: "Is sex before marriage right?"
    • Descriptive ethics
      • This describes and compares the different ways in which people and societies have answered moral questions.
      • Example
        • "What do Christian and Muslim traditions believe about sex before marriage.
    • Meta-ethics
      • Sometimes called "philosophical ethics."
      • Explores the meaning and function of moral language.
      • Example
        • "What do we mean when we say that sex before marriage is good?"

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