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  1. Williams’s Integrity Objection as a Psychological Problem.Nikhil Venkatesh - 2024 - Topoi 43 (2):491-501.
    Utilitarianism is the view that as far as morality goes, one ought to choose the option which will result in the most overall well-being—that is, that maximises the sum of whatever makes life worth living, with each person’s life equally weighted. The promise of utilitarianism is to reduce morality to one simple principle, easily incorporated into policy analysis, economics and decision theory. However, utilitarianism is not popular amongst moral philosophers today. This is in large part due to the influence of (...)
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  2. Utilitarianism and the Social Nature of Persons.Nikhil Venkatesh - 2023 - Dissertation, University College London
    This thesis defends utilitarianism: the view that as far as morality goes, one ought to choose the option which will result in the most overall well-being. Utilitarianism is widely rejected by philosophers today, largely because of a number of influential objections. In this thesis I deal with three of them. Each is found in Bernard Williams’s ‘A Critique of Utilitarianism’ (1973). The first is the Integrity Objection, an intervention that has been influential whilst being subject to a wide variety of (...)
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  3. Utilitarianism, Altruism, and Consent.Meacham Christopher - 2022 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 21 (1).
    A number of criticisms of Utilitarianism – such as “nearest and dearest” objections, “demandingness” objections, and “altruistic” objections – arise because Utilitarianism doesn’t permit partially or wholly disregarding the utility of certain subjects. A number of authors, including Sider, Portmore and Vessel, have responded to these objections by suggesting we adopt “dual-maximizing” theories which provide a way to incorporate disregarding. And in response to “altruistic” objections in particular – objections noting that it seems permissible to make utility-decreasing sacrifices – these (...)
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  4. Is act-consquentialism self-effacing?Nikhil Venkatesh - 2021 - Analysis 81 (4):718-726.
    Act-consequentialism (C) is self-effacing for an agent iff that agent’s not accepting C would produce the best outcome. The question of whether C is self-effacing is important for evaluating C. Some hold that if C is self-effacing that would be a mark against it (Williams 1973: 134); however, the claim that C is self-effacing is also used to defend C against certain objections (Parfit 1984: Ch. 1, Railton 1984). -/- In this paper I will show that one argument suggested by (...)
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  5. Consequentialism and Moral Worth.Nathaniel Sharadin - 2019 - Utilitas 31 (2):117-136.
    Sometimes, agents do the right thing for the right reason. What’s the normative significance of this phenomenon? According to proponents of the special status view, when an agent acts for the right reason, her actions enjoy a special normative status, namely, worthiness. Proponents of this view claim that self-effacing forms of consequentialism cannot say this plausible thing, and, worse, are blocked from having a perspicuous view of matters by the self-effacing nature of their consequentialism. In this paper, I argue that (...)
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  6. The Modesty of the Moral Point of View.Karl Schafer - 2016 - In Errol Lord & Barry Maguire (eds.), Weighing Reasons. Oup Usa.
    In recent years, several philosophers - including Joshua Gert, Douglas Portmore, and Elizabeth Harman - have argued that there is a sense in which morality itself does not treat moral reasons as consistently overriding.2 My aim in the present essay is to develop and extend this idea from a somewhat different perspective. In doing so, I offer an alternative way of formalizing the idea that morality is modest about the weight of moral reasons in this way, thereby making more explicit (...)
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  7. Reactive Attitudes and the Hare–Williams Debate: Towards a New Consequentialist Moral Psychology.D. E. Miller - 2014 - Philosophical Quarterly 64 (254):39-59.
    Bernard Williams charges that the moral psychology built into R. M. Hare’s utilitarianism is incoherent in virtue of demanding a bifurcated kind of moral thinking that is possible only for agents who fail to reflect properly on their own practical decision making. I mount a qualified defence of Hare’s view by drawing on the account of the ‘reactive attitudes’ found in P. F. Strawson’s ‘Freedom and Resentment’. Against Williams, I argue that the ‘resilience’ of the reactive attitudes ensures that our (...)
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  8. Rejecting The Publicity Condition: The Inevitability of Esoteric Morality.Ben Eggleston - 2013 - Philosophical Quarterly 63 (250):29-57.
    It is often thought that some version of what is generally called the publicity condition is a reasonable requirement to impose on moral theories. In this article, after formulating and distinguishing three versions of the publicity condition, I argue that the arguments typically used to defend them are unsuccessful and, moreover, that even in its most plausible version, the publicity condition ought to be rejected as both question-begging and unreasonably demanding.
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  9. Secrecy in consequentialism: A defence of esoteric morality.Katarzyna de Lazari-Radek & Peter Singer - 2010 - Ratio 23 (1):34-58.
    Sidgwick's defence of esoteric morality has been heavily criticized, for example in Bernard Williams's condemnation of it as 'Government House utilitarianism.' It is also at odds with the idea of morality defended by Kant, Rawls, Bernard Gert, Brad Hooker, and T.M. Scanlon. Yet it does seem to be an implication of consequentialism that it is sometimes right to do in secret what it would not be right to do openly, or to advocate publicly. We defend Sidgwick on this issue, and (...)
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  10. Publicity in morality.Brad Hooker - 2010 - Ratio 23:111-117.
    Consider the idea that moral rules must be suitable for public acknowledgement and acceptance, i.e., that moral rules must be suitable for being ‘widely known and explicitly recognized’, suitable for teaching as part of moral education, suitable for guiding behaviour and reactions to behaviour, and thus suitable for justifying one’s behaviour to others. This idea is now most often associated with John Rawls, who traces it back through Kurt Baier to Kant.[1] My book developing ruleconsequentialism, Ideal Code, Real World, accepted (...)
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  11. How Indirect Can Indirect Utilitarianism Be?Eric Wiland - 2007 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 74 (2):275-301.
    Most act‐utilitarians now reject the direct utilitarianism of Bentham. They do so because they are convinced of what I call the paradox of utilitarianism—the thought that one cannot maximize happiness if one is trying to maximize happiness. Instead, they adopt some form of indirect utilitarianism (IU), arguing that the optimal decision procedure may differ markedly from the criterion of rightness for actions. Here I distinguish between six different versions of indirect utilitarianism, arguing that the weaker versions of IU also fall (...)
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  12. Consequentialism and Decision Procedures.Toby Ord - 2005 - Dissertation, University of Oxford
    Consequentialism is often charged with being self-defeating, for if a person attempts to apply it, she may quite predictably produce worse outcomes than if she applied some other moral theory. Many consequentialists have replied that this criticism rests on a false assumption, confusing consequentialism’s criterion of the rightness of an act with its position on decision procedures. Consequentialism, on this view, does not dictate that we should be always calculating which of the available acts leads to the most good, but (...)
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  13. Has Dancy Shown a Problem in Consequentialism?Klemens Kappel - 1999 - Theoria 65 (2-3):193-211.
    If we tried, all the time, to do the acts which, according to consequentialism, are right, this would be worse, on consequentialist terms, than if we were less ambitious. In this way consequentialism is indirectly self‐defeating, as Parfit says in Reasons and Persons. But, as Parfit also says, this is not an objection to consequentialism. In a recent contribution, Dancy argues that this is a mistake, however. There is, Dancy suggests, a sense in which consequentialism both recommends that we do (...)
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  14. Consequentialism and self-defeat.Paul K. Moser - 1991 - Philosophical Quarterly 41 (162):82-85.
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  15. Implications of a self-effacing consequentialism.William L. Langenfus - 1989 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 27 (4):479-493.
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  16. The principle of moral harmony.Fred Feldman - 1980 - Journal of Philosophy 77 (3):166-179.
  17. What Is Wrong With Self-effacing Ethical Theories?Austin Keefe - unknown
    Self-effacing ethical theories are those that recommend their own erasure. Such theories are a controversial topic in contemporary moral philosophy. In this thesis, I shed light on what is and is not wrong with this type of theory. I examine two kinds of self-effacing ethical theories, a radical version of sophisticated consequentialism and developmental virtue ethics. I defend them against three common objections to self-effacing theories. I raise and develop two novel objections to self-effacing theories: a self-erasure objection and an (...)
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