Consequentialism and Decision Procedures

Dissertation, University of Oxford (2005)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

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 instead advises us to decide what to do in whichever manner it is that will lead to the best outcome. Whilst it is typically afforded only a small note in any text on consequentialism, this reply has deep implications for the practical application of consequentialism, perhaps entailing that a consequentialist should eschew calculation altogether.

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 76,442

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

The Demands of Consequentialism.Tim Mulgan - 2001 - Oxford University Press.
A refutation of consequentialism.Robert Guay - 2005 - Metaphilosophy 36 (3):348-362.
7 Consequentialism.Douglas W. Portmore - 2011 - In Christian Miller (ed.), Continuum Companion to Ethics. Continuum. pp. 143.
Slote's Satisficing Consequentialism.Tim Mulgan - 1993 - Ratio 6 (2):121 - 134.
Rule-consequentialism's dilemma.Iain Law - 1999 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 2 (3):263-276.
Consequentialism and commitment.Alastair Norcross - 1997 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 78 (4):380–403.

Analytics

Added to PP
2009-01-28

Downloads
182 (#71,288)

6 months
6 (#134,068)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Toby Ord
Oxford University

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

Reasons and Persons.Derek Parfit - 1984 - Oxford University Press.
Utilitarianism.J. S. Mill - 1861 - Oxford University Press UK.
Reasons and Persons.Joseph Margolis - 1986 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 47 (2):311-327.
Alienation, consequentialism, and the demands of morality.Peter Railton - 1984 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 13 (2):134-171.
Wise Choices, Apt Feelings.Allan Gibbard - 1990 - Ethics 102 (2):342-356.

View all 36 references / Add more references