- Created by: Abigailmay101
- Created on: 05-09-21 12:29
Just an example answer for anyone stuggling in AS :)
Utilitarianism could be an extremely influential teleological ethical theory and it relies on the principles of consequentialism, welfarism and impartiality. Bentham was influenced by Aristotle to make a kind of consequentialist Utilitarianism called Act Utilitarianism. Utilitarianism is a secular ethical theory that argues that the morality of an action is based on consequences and how much pleasure or happiness it creates. However, it's debatable how valuable this theory is in resolving moral dilemmas.
Bentham was an 18th-century atheist philosopher, who was concerned about the necessities of others and was heavily involved within the social reforms of parliament. Bentham’s theory of Act Utilitarianism is additionally influenced by Aristotle’s teaching that Eudaimonia is that the last word cause/purpose of life and his theory are often split into three sections. The primary section is Bentham’s hedonistic views of humanity in which we neutralize in life is to understand pleasure and avoid pain so this identified what we must always and shouldn’t do; we should always do things that make us happy and avoid doing things that will cause pain. Therefore, we should always consider the hedonic effect of our actions in moral dilemmas. This is a strong point to consider in resolving moral dilemmas as the action which results in the most happiness is likely to be the ‘right’ choice, as a contrast to a destructive choice that costs us, and others, pain. However, One weakness of Bentham’s Act Utilitarianism, in particular, is that it is impractical to regularly apply the Hedonic Calculus. Whilst Bentham’s 7 principles may well be useful for accurately quantifying levels of pleasure/ pain, they are fairly time-consuming and are not useful when we need to make impulsive moral decisions.
Bentham’s theory has also supported the principle of utility, which states the action you are taking during an ethical dilemma should be one that makes the foremost effective good for the only number. However, the ultimate word element of Bentham’s theory was his Hedonic Calculus, which was his way of measuring the great and bad consequences of an action by what quantity pleasure the action would produce. The seven components of the hedonic calculus are the intensity of happiness together with the duration, certainty, propinquity, fecundity, purity and extent. This was a quantitative way of measuring the amount of enjoyment caused by action to return to an ethical decision, which to stay with Bentham should be the action that ranks most highly on the hedonic calculus. By establishing these sections within Act Utilitarianism Bentham attempts to provide a theory that can be easily applied by anymore to an ethical dilemma. This suggests that Act Ultinarisim is extremely useful in resolving moral dilemmas as it can easily be applied in most situations, meaning it is accessible in daily life.
Act Utilitarianism has many strengths as an ethical theory. It follows the Pareto Principle, an advocate by economist Pareto which states that an outcome becomes better if you create more people…