Absolute/ Relative ethics- OCR AS

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  • Created on: 05-03-12 11:53
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Absolute/ Relative ethics
· If you are an ethical absolutist, you believe that some actions are
intrinsically (by their very nature) right and wrong.
Right and Wrong are solid, tangible concepts that aren't
affected by culture\time.
Apply to all people in all situations. An example of an absolutist
ethical theory: fundamentalist Christian Ethics, wherein the
word of the bible is direct teachings of God and thus followed
to the letter.
Ethical relativist Moral truths can vary ­ there is no fixed,
objective morality.
Often difficult to apply, relativism allows for differences
between times and cultures that might otherwise not agree.
Absolutism can be seen as inflexible, often dated and
intolerant of cultural diversity
However, relativism can be subjective, difficult to apply and
could potentially be used to justify immoral behaviour.
Deontological ethics means that goodness\badness is
judged solely upon the action itself. So even if a bad action has
good consequences it would never be considered good.
Teleological ethics looks at the consequences of an action
instead of the action itself, which means that a bad action with
good consequences would be regarded as good.


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