B) Intuitionism



  • Meta-ethical approach: seeks to explore the nature of moral values and terms
  • Realist: objective moral laws exist independently of humans
  • G.E. Moore led the way in this 'anti-naturalism'
  • The theory that moral judgements are known intuitively
  • Puts forth the idea that moral values are irreducible to anything else; they are unique and we should recognise them as such
  • 'Consequentialist intuitionism'- supported by G.E.Moore or deontological intuitionism- held by H.A.Prichard

Moore's intuitionism

  • As a consequentialist, Moore believed that the moral worth of an action is determined by the good effects it brings
  • Stated that good cannot be defined, but can be known intuitively
  • Because good is indefinable, it cannot be reduced to 'the greatest happiness' (act utilitarianism) or some other non-moral good
  • 'Good' can be defined no more successfully than 'yellow': in the same way ethical values cannot be defined but are self-evident and can be known only directly through intuition
  • 'If I am asked, "What is…


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