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For OCR's G572 Specification

30 pages of concentrated philosophy

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Part 1 ­ Ethical Theories
Ethics is a branch of philosophy concerned with morality. This guide will be
examining systems of moral judgment that allow actions to be categorized into right
& wrong, and then look at a variety of common ethical dilemmas to see how different
ethicists would approach…

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Part 1 ­ Ethical Theories
There are four ethical theories on the syllabus, and Natural Law is one of them. It's a
semi-absolute and deontological ethical theory that has close ties with Catholicism.

Aristotle (384-322 BCE) ­ `Nicomachean Ethics'

· As previously mentioned, Aristotle argued that every object and living…

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Part 1 ­ Ethical Theories
· These primary precepts are absolute and never change. From these, we are able
to deduce secondary precepts ­ for example, if the primary precept is preservation
of life, then it follows that natural law would forbid abortion as this halts a potential

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Part 1 ­ Ethical Theories
Previously you've seen Kantian Ethics demonstrated, both in his theory of duty and
the categorical imperative ­ but unfortunately, that was just scratching the surface...

Immanuel Kant (1724 - 1804) ­ `The Critique of Practical Reason'

· As you probably already know, Kant thought that…

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Part 1 ­ Ethical Theories
So if a hypothetical imperative is an action that is a means to something else, a
categorical imperative is an action that's good in itself. Strictly speaking, here are
some ways in which an action could be considered good in itself.

Three Maxims of The…

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Part 1 ­ Ethical Theories
The phrase `the greater good' is often used when speaking of morals, and
Utilitarianism is the logical extension of this, defining exactly what this `good' is.

Jeremy Bentham (1748 - 1832) ­ `The Principles of Morals & Legislation
· Bentham was a hedonist ­ he…

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Part 1 ­ Ethical Theories
Although Mill was concerend with the rights of the minority more than Bentham (as
Mill's wife was a suffragette) his utilitarianism could still potentially be used in order
to justify very harmful actions on the grounds that they do more good than harm...

Peter Singer…

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Part 1 ­ Ethical Theories
The major world religions all take slightly different approaches to ethical dilemmas,
but Christianity is one that is probably most familiar in the western world, so this
section will be focused on it.
Does religion prescribe morality?
· Simply put, this asks whether religion and…

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Part 1 ­ Ethical Theories Humanism
Morality fromof
Sources God
· The Bible is believed to be the word of God, and thus its word has a certain
degree of authority to it. Biblical Fundamentalists take this to be the direct and
absolute word of God, whereas there are…


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