This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Problems And Prospects For Utilitarianism Essay

1919 words - 8 pages

This essay will deal with the problems and prospects for Utilitarianism, outlining the basic tenants of its philosophy and the problems that can occur while using it as a basis for moral living. It will outline, evaluate, and dismiss three different strands; act utilitarianism, rule utilitarianism and the last which is a combination of both. The history should be illustrated putting into context why utilitarianism was initially attractive; this will also demonstrate where the modern thought originated. This essay will prove that as a basis for moral living, utilitarianism is not a viable option as it currently stands. It is also advocated that one of the greatest thinker and writers of this movement, JS Mill, was not even utilitarian, despite his assertions to the contrary.Jeremy Bentham was the modern father of utilitarianism, but he has his antecedents in the Epicureans, and influence from the writings John Hume, as well as his contemporary, William Paley. Paley advocated a type of Utilitarianism that was influenced by Christian theology. However Bentham was the first to bring all the theory together as a cohesive whole under the heading of act utilitarianism. "[the utilitarian movement was] essentially practical in outlook, orientated towards legal, penal, and political reform." Bentham started his career following his father at the Bar. It is noted by Coplestone that this was not the career he desired and what he preferred was "the life of reflection to that of a practicing lawyer." His interest was directed towards reform of the law with regard to the utility of the law in dealing with offenders; his reflection was directed towards the most desirable consequences in the penal system. Due to the opposition and rejection of his ideas he became convinced that the whole system needed a radical overhaul; therefore political reform was required. As a result of opposition to his ideas act utilitarianism was codified. This led to a calculus moral system written by Bentham based on utility.Bentham's form of Utilitarianism is known as Act Utilitarianism, this is his definition:"By the principle of utility is meant that principle which approves or disproves of every other action whatsoever, according to the tendency which it appears to have to augment or diminish the happiness of the party whose interest is in question: or, what is the same thing in other words, to promote or to oppose that happiness. I say of every action whatsoever; and therefore not only of every action of a private individual, but of every measure of government."The essence of his philosophy is to consider the possible outcome of every act and then to make a choice on the basis of possible happiness or avoidance of pain, as the result of each consideration. He is not referring to the decision makers own happiness but " augment or to diminish the happiness of the community..." It is obvious that a way of measuring happiness must then be universal. Bentham conceives of a number...

Find Another Essay On Problems and prospects for Utilitarianism

The Prospects For A Reinvigorated And Diverse British National Cinema

1264 words - 5 pages The Prospects For A Reinvigorated And Diverse British National Cinema 'Is there scope for British Cinema in the future?' could be one interpretation of this statement and one that I intend to explore. I believe that with the dominance of Hollywood overpowering the British film industry, the past century has seen the traditional British cinema suffer. Although audience figures were utterly immense in the earlier half of

Water In the Middle East: Prospects for Conflict and Cooperation

1580 words - 7 pages works of the other countries have been the first significant attempts to challenge the above mentioned status quo. On the other hand, apart for the prospects for conflict, the role of the international community has been from great importance, as it is trying hard to impose a middle ground between the conflicting countries. It is clear that no final agreement is possible until there are agreed-upon borders between the State of Israel and the State

Millennium Development Goals, Conflicts, and Prospects for the Future: Lesotho

1543 words - 7 pages more of a wealth gap. According to liberal theory, institutions, open markets, and strong democratic states are what can best address the problems of globalization faced by developing countries and the rest of the world. This is where the assumptions of orthodox development ideas have their root. John Ikenberry is an important theorist for this idea and has argued the US has been able to, since the end of WWII, instill liberal ideals into

“The Global Economic Situation and Prospects for 2010 and Beyond: Policy Options”

1725 words - 7 pages more reserves to guard against loan failures.In the past Asian countries followed and learned from the Western developed countries, but found later that these systems had their own set of problems, so it is better for them to localize the system to sustain effective financial growth.The Government, as usual was the problem. More government is certainly not the solution. The free market, as usual, attempts to fix all damage the government does.By

Problems and Solutions for Community Policing

1151 words - 5 pages Community Orientated Policing is widely held as the new and correct style for American policing. For the past decade the community policing movement has been gaining momentum acquiring the support of politicians, scholars, reformers, and the public. Unfortunately there are problems that continually plague the philosophy of Community Policing. Some of the largest obstacles that police organizations face with the community policing program are the

HRM - Problems and Resolutions for Any Company

3452 words - 14 pages and provide suitable solutions for them.List of Issues:Based on the given information, there are many problems revolving around Klad-It which concern HRM. They have been identified and explained below:Lack of Strategic HR Planning and Insufficient Workforce Planning:Developing a human resource (HR) strategy to support the business plan requires human resource management (HRM) planning to be recognized as a fundamental part of the business

China's External Relations and Their Economic Impact CHINA-ASEAN RELATIONS : Perspectives, prospects and implication for northeast Asia interests

2107 words - 8 pages China's External Relations and Their Economic ImpactCHINA-ASEAN RELATIONS Perspectives, prospects and implication for northeast asia interestsIntroductionASEAN Plus Three is a forum that fosters cooperation between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) members and the three Asian giants - China, Japan and South Korea.The ASEAN +3 proposal has generated buzz and support around Asia. This is because the creation of ASEAN +3 would

Market Solutions for Canada's Health Care And Pension Plan Problems

1667 words - 7 pages Health care and Pension plan problems are more visible every year for the Canadian population and raise concern in several institutions that may be affected by these problems. Sociologists and Economists study the economic consequences of demographics in Health Care and Pension Plans and suggest possible fiscal solutions that would help fix this problem. Nevertheless, most of the times the use of Fiscal Policy to solve Pension and Health Care

Main Problems for Planet Earth: Air Pollution and Water Pollution

1462 words - 6 pages Pollution is a very bad issue that is affecting the world's ecosystem and the way we live today. People in the future may have problems with so much pollution in the forests, cities and suburbs that we may have to inhabit another planet. Some of the main problems are water pollution, noise pollution, air pollution and many more different forums of pollution. Comprising over 70% of the earth , water is the most valuable resource. Life on Earth

Advantages and Problems for a City Being a Transport Hub

2554 words - 10 pages Advantages and Problems for a city being a transport hub: from urban planning and governance perspective. Introduction Transportation hub is an agglomeration of different transport modes, such as maritime, road, rail and air transport. The role of transport hub brings a lot of benefits and adverse effect to the city, which will be discussed in the later part of this essay. There are common features of transport hub. Transport hubs are usually

'Classical objection to utilitarianism is that it makes insufficient provision for considerations of rights and justice'. Discuss this quotation i

725 words - 3 pages Many objections have been made in contradiction to utilitarianism due to the theory having little concern for the rights and justice of individuals. Under utilitarianism philosophy as long as an act maximizes the “utility” (well-being) of the many it is viewed as the moral thing to do, however theories have risen which question utilitarianism due to the lack of concern for individuals within the outcome of acts. Good consequences for the maxim

Similar Essays

Reviewing India’s Industrialisation: Problems And Prospects

1019 words - 5 pages ) have come up, giving high quality first hand training and experience in the fields of engineering and business management. But, along with all the above prospects, the Indian industrial scenario also suffers from various loopholes. Let’s come to some of those problems. The primary sector of industries, especially agriculture, is still very backward technologically. In an agriculture-core economy like India, the use of advanced technology and

Entrepreneur And Economic Development Of Nigeria: Problems And Prospects

1615 words - 6 pages 1 2010 Simeon Abumere Iyoha PG/EDU0003886 [ ASSIGNMENT FOR BUS 815-ENTREPRENEURIAL DEVELOPMENT 2008/2009] Entrepreneur and Economic Development of Nigeria: Problems and prospects INTRODUCTION"No amount of pay would be enough for an employee of an organization to live a comfortable life that he would please"- this assertion is a common place phrase that new inductee of banks are tutored with on entering into the financial systems of

Critisism For Rule And Act Utilitarianism

1379 words - 6 pages “Utilitarianism is the view that the supreme principle of morality is to act so as to produce as much happiness as possible, each person counting equally” (Mill, 114). By ‘happiness’, this includes anything that is pleasurable and free of pain. Simply put, utilitarianism is the theory that an action is right, as long as it produces the greatest good for the most number of people (Peetush). The central point to this theory is that one must

Deontology And Utilitarianism: Ethical Theories For Nurses

1383 words - 6 pages Deontology and Utilitarianism: Ethical Theories for Nurses Ethics is not a concept that is thought about often, but it is practiced on a daily basis. Even while unconscious of the fact, people consider ethics while making every choice in life. There are many theories to which people allude, but two radically different theories that are sometimes practiced are deontology and utilitarianism. Deontology deals with actions in a situation while