Pre-requisites / Co-requisites
Ethics: historical perspectives [PY1095] must be taken at the same time or already have been passed.
Ethics or moral philosophy is the inquiry into the nature of moral value. It is concerned with questions about goodness, right and wrong, the virtues and the nature of the worthwhile life. One way into a consideration of moral philosophy is to read the works of those who have made substantial contributions to our understanding of moral questions: Plato, Aristotle, Hume, Kant, Mill and others. (This is the subject matter of the other course in ethics) But a historical approach needs to be complemented by the more direct consideration of questions about virtue, action, consequences, rights, duties, the ‘fact-value’ distinction, the nature of moral truth, the universalisability of moral principles, and much besides. These sorts of issue form the basis of this course.
One two- hour unseen written examination
Taster study material