Sidgwick's first explicit statement of the utilitarian position, in an essay presented to the Metaphysical Society in 1873, provides a lucid overview of the errors to be avoided and the terms to be clarified in any adequate account of the subject. As a précis of the comprehensive treatment of utilitarianism that would soon appear in The Methods of Ethics, this essay should serve as a useful guide to that work.
This volume provides a selection of the shorter writings of the great nineteenth-century moral philosopher Henry Sidgwick. Sidgwick's monumental work The Methods of Ethics is a classic of philosophy, and this new volume is a fascinating complement to it. It will be a rich resource for anyone interested in moral philosophy or the development of modern analytical philosophy.
Introduction -- Ethics and politics -- Ethical judgments -- Pleasure and desire -- Free will -- Ethical principles and methods -- Egoism and self-love -- Chapter viii-intuitionism -- Good -- Book II: Egoism -- The principle and method of egoism -- Empirical hedonism -- Empirical hedonism (continued) -- Objective hedonism and common sense -- Happiness and duty -- Deductive hedonism -- Book III: Intuitionism -- Intuitionism -- Virtue and duty -- The intellectual virtues -- Benevolence -- Justice -- Laws and (...) promises -- Classification of duties. truth -- Other social duties and virtues -- Self-regarding virtues -- Courage, humility, etc. -- Review of the morality of common sense -- Motives or springs of action as subjects of moral judgment -- Philosophical intuitionism -- Ultimate good -- Book IV: Utilitarianism -- The meaning of utilitarianism -- The proof of utilitarianism -- The relation of utilitarianism to the morality of common sense -- The method of utilitarianism -- The method of utilitarianism (continued) -- Concluding chapter: The mutual relations of the three methods. (shrink)
This is the first book in the Practical and Professional Ethics Series, sponsored by the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics. It is a reissue of a long-unavailable work by the English philosopher and educator Henry Sidgwick (1838-1900). The book, first published in 1898, collects nine essays, most of which represent addresses to members of two ethical societies that Sidgwick helped found in Cambridge and London in the 1880s. Sidgwick indicates that these societies aimed to allow academics, professionals, and others (...) to pursue joint efforts at reaching "some results of value for practical guidance and life." Sidgwick hoped that the members of these societies might discuss, for example, when public officials might be justified in lying or breaking promises, whether scientists could legitimately inflict suffering on animals for research purposes, or the problem of possible exceptions to common moral ideals that professionals advocate for their own group, along with a score of other problems in practical ethics. Throughout these essays, Sidgwick addresses such problems with the acuity, the genuine concern, and the patient rationale that he brought to all his writings. (shrink)