Ethical Theories: AS OCR Religious Studies

Basically a booklet on AS OCR Ethical Theories if you didn't get that from the title. Pretty detailed, I'm pretty sure it would get you a high mark on a question about it. Some is mine and my teacher's work, however some has come from pages on Get Revising and other bits have come from textbooks such as OCR Philosophy and Ethics by Taylor, Eyre and Knight, Ethical Theory by Mel Thompson and Ethical Studies by Robert Bowie. Ummm so yeah if you can be bothered reading it then do, it helped me :)

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Ethical Theories
Approaches to Ethics

Descriptive Ethics: Simple describes the way people in different societies actually behave. It doesn't
examine issues of right and wrong.

Normative Ethics: Examines issues of right and wrong and how people justify the decisions they
make when faced with situations of moral choice.

The Ring…

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Ethical thinking originated from Ancient Greece, from the time of Homer, (Eighth century BCE) when
being good meant being a heroic warrior; noble, courageous and strong. This was then further
developed through the scriptures of Socrates, Plato and Aristotle who looked at the idea of
character and virtue. So, the…

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For a Moral absolutist the end can never justify the means;

Aldous Huxley ­ "The end cannot justify the means, for the simple and obvious reason that the
means employed determine the nature of the ends produced."


For some Moral absolutist, the intention behind the act is also important.…

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Cultural Relativism observes what is right in that particular society in that particular time. Moral
Relativism goes beyond just observing and makes a postulate (proposal). It observes what is right
according to that society at that time and assumes it is right ONLY according to that particular society.

No Absolutes:…

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Sometimes it is best to think about a situation logically rather than use rules to decipher what
is right and wrong
Judgements are always subjective
No two people may agree on a judgement
Relativism does not allow a society to progress e.g. some things like genocide have always
got to…


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