These cookies do not store any personal information. You could not be signed in, please check and try again. Please, subscribe or login to access full text content. 3 Reasons Doing Nothing Can Actually be Productive, 3 Myths Far Too Many People Believe About the Past. We sometimes describe this theory as duty-, rule-, or obligation-based. For example, imagine you have received a gift from a friend, but you hate this gift. Consequentialism vs. Deontology Consequentialism vs. Deontology Chapter: (p.150) 7 Consequentialism vs. Deontology Source: British Ethical Theorists from Sidgwick to Ewing Author(s): Thomas Hurka Publisher: Oxford University Press It explores what Ross did and did not mean by saying consequentialism ‘ignores the highly personal character of duty’. Then again, if she does not tell him, it may be mentally traumatic for him to know whether he is going to live or die. For instance, consider that a man has saved enough money to buy a house for his family, but has to deal with an unfortunate situation when his son meets with an accident. The term was originally coined in the essay titled “Moral Modern Philosophy”, by G.E.M. The central question in both these cases is, ‘What you ought to do?’ That is to say, the question focuses what you should do, rather than what you want to do, or whether you should do what you feel like. The practical focus is to determine what is rational―as per the rules and as per the correct action. Universal moral laws here refers to rules such as don’t kill, don’t lie, don’t steal. Here, you are demonstrating a deontological position as you are disregarding the possible consequences of your actions when determining what is right and what is wrong. There are different forms of consequentialism; utilitarianism and hedonism are two such main forms. The consequentialist philosophy might require that the interest of someone is sacrificed for something better. Furthermore, the more good results an act produces, the better or more right that act will be. The central question is, ‘What kind of a person should I be?’ Thus, virtue ethics do not concentrate on the correctness of the act, but the moral conduct of the agent who is performing the act. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. Whereas, consequentialism focuses on the consequences of the action. Deontology is an ethical theory that states it is possible to determine the rightness or wrongness of actions by examining actions themselves, without focusing on their consequences whereas consequentialism is an ethical theory that states it is possible to determine the rightness or wrongness of actions by examining its consequences. It stresses on the fact that morality of a person or action depend on how ideal the character traits are. Thus, according to consequentialism, a morally right act is an act that will produce good results. Virtue ethics seems to have taken root in ancient Greek philosophy as well. Deontology and consequentialism are two contrasting, normative ethical theories that determine the morality of an action. This chapter first examines Sidgwick’s critique of deontology and defence of consequentialism, arguing that it is repeatedly unfair, holding the principles it criticizes to standards Sidgwick did not apply to his own consequentialist axioms, and in particular fails by lacking Ross’s concept of prima facie duty; this shows both in Sidgwick’s critiques of deontology and in his equivocal statements of his axioms. This website uses cookies to improve your experience. FAQs It focuses on identifying the moral conduct through which the right actions can be performed but based on what is laid down as a duty. The main difference between deontology and consequentialism is that deontology focuses on the rightness or wrongness of actions themselves. Consequentialism refers to a set of normative ethical theories that states an action should be judged right or wrong on the basis of its consequences. Who is to decide what consequence is right in this case? We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Like its previously-mentioned counterpart, it focuses on conduct, but there is a minor difference between deontology and consequentialism in this case. In this scenario, he failed in his duty as a father, and the consequences of his act would affect his entire family. Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2014, DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199233625.001.0001, PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE ( Deontology is a sub-category of consequentialism that focuses on punishment for breaking rules, or harm to society based on breaking rules. Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. Consequentialism is a type of normative ethical theory which states that the moral quality of an action is completely determined by its consequences, and nothing else. Consequentialism and deontology are two such theories that are classified under ethics of conduct, i.e., our behavior and the way we conduct ourselves. Meanwhile, deontology determines the rightness or wrongness of actions by examining action themselves, without focusing on their consequences. It concentrates on the correctness and wrongness of actions based on how well the rules of duty and responsibility were followed. Consequentialists state that maximum happiness achieved is what is good; the actions that maximize this good are right. A person’s morality may be judged on a number of factors. “Ethics – Introduction to Ethics: Consequentialism.” BBC, Available here.3. If she tells him, he might be brave enough to face it and spend his last days with his family, which is a good consequence. In such a case, the best and right action would be to save his son, for if his son is safe and sound, he will be mentally happy and relieved to earn more money and plan a better future for his family. Keywords: “Deontology.” Ethics Unwrapped, Available here. Get a brand new article like this in your inbox every Friday. These cookies will be stored in your browser only with your consent. The essence is to do the task, according to how right it is presumed to be. There have been many criticisms of virtue ethics due to the absence of a rational experience. But opting out of some of these cookies may have an effect on your browsing experience. consequentialism, utilitarianism, deontology, benevolence, non-maleficence, promises, punishment, Henry Sidgwick, H.A. They clash because each offers a different approach to determining “right” from “wrong.” date: 26 November 2020.   DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199233625.003.0008, Introduction: British Ethical Theorists from Sidgwick to Ewing, 8 Act-Consequentialism, Pluralist Deontology, 11 Self-Benefit, Distribution, Punishment, British Ethical Theorists from Sidgwick to Ewing, 6 Moral Truths: Underivative and Derived, 8 Act-Consequentialism, Pluralist Deontology, 11 Self-Benefit, Distribution, Punishment. She is currently reading for a Masters degree in English. As mentioned earlier, this theory solely focuses on ideals. According to the definition of deontology in ethics, it focuses more on obligation, duty, or ideal expectations.


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