...Object Oriented Analysis (OOA) dan Design (OOD) diusulkan pada periode waktu yang sama, dan telah dikenalkan model proses object oriented bertujuan umum (sama dengan model evolusioner yang disajikan pada bab ini). Seperti kebanyakan paradigma “baru” untuk rekayasa software, penganut dari setiap metode OOA dan OOD memperdebatkan mana yang paling baik, namun tak ada metode individu atau bahasa yang mendominasi bidang rekayasa software. Awal tahun 1990-an James Rumbaugh [RUM91], Grady Brooch [BOO94] dan Ivar Jacobson [JAC92] memulai metode unified yang mengkombinasikan fitur terbaik dari tiap metode individual dan mengadopsi fitur tambahan yang diajukan oleh para ahli lainnya [WIR90] pada bidang OO. Hasilnya berupa UML – Unified Modeling Language yang berisi notasi untuk pemodelan dan pengembangan sistem OO. Mulai tahun 1997, UML menjadi standar industri untuk pengembangan software berbasis objek. Pada tahun yang sama, Rational Corporation dan vendor lainnya mengotomatisasikan perangkat mereka untuk mendukung penggunaan metode UML. UML menyediakan kebutuhan teknologi untuk mendukung praktek rekayasa software berbasis objek, tapi tidak menyediakan proses framework untuk pedoman tim proyek pada pengaplikasian dari teknologi tersebut. Beberapa tahun mendatang, Jacobson, Rumbaugh, dan Booch mengembangkan Unified Process, sebuah framework untuk rekayasa software berbasis objek menggunakan UML. Sekarang, Unified Process dan UML digunakan secara luas pada semua jenis proyek OO.......
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Discuss the Roles of Language and Reason in History.
... Discuss the roles of language and reason in history. History as the area of knowledge is virtually indivisible from language and reasoning. Language is one of the most potent means of interpreting and reporting historical information that is derived from the sources pertinent to the events and occurrences. The sources themselves, in their turn, are frequently presented by the written documents, recorded anecdotal experiences, and works of art, archeology, anthropology and photography which, yet again, are interpreted through the language in conjunction with the context of a historical event. It appears to be an endless loop, where language is the alpha and omega, the main vehicle of conveying history. However, to arrive to the valid interpretation of a certain historical event or development, historians frequently use reasoning to connect the factual data of the tangible sources since the latter ones often come in the form of fragments, related to a particular aspect of the happening. Ideally, reasoning, applied to the interpretation of historical data, should be impersonal, unaffected by predominant views and opinions and completely untainted by political agenda. Yet, it is hard to imagine that throughout the centuries those who held power would willingly allow the contemporary historians relate to the masses the adequate information on the details of their governing techniques and actions. As Winston Churchill pointed out...
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Ethical Language Has No Meaning
...Ethical language has no meaning. Discuss (35 Marks) The meaning and function of ethical language is the focus of meta-ethics. It can be discussed whether ethical language has any meaning at all by looking at different perspectives. An ethical naturalist would say that all ethical statements are the same as non-ethical ones; they’re factual and can, therefore, be true or false. So ‘Thomas More was executed for his beliefs in 1535’ and ‘Thomas More was a good man’ can be proved true or false by looking at the evidence. If we can find evidence, we can conclude that Thomas More was good and if not, we can conclude he was not. The same holds for any moral issue for example if one wants to know if euthanasia is right or wrong. They simply look at the evidence so they can test the accuracy of the statement, and from this they could argue that euthanasia ends suffering for an individual, therefore euthanasia is right. Ethical naturalist is an objective and cognitive theory, which means that they claim that there are moral facts and that they can be known, perhaps through reason, or through revelation and that they are true for everyone, for all time. Therefore ethical naturalists see ethical language as meaningful because they argue that ethical language has an underlined content of purpose. For example a knife is good if it cuts sharply. Therefore ethical language is showing what terms such as ‘good’ mean through the content of purpose within an ethical statement and is......
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Religious and Ethical Language Are About Facts. Discuss.
...Religious and Ethical Language are about facts. Discuss. In order to analyse whether language, religious or ethical are about facts it is vital to define facts. According to Honderich a fact can be defined as the worldly correlation of a true proposition, in other words a state of affairs make a statement true or false. There are two main schools of thought as to how ethical and religious language is to be treated. The cognitivists argue that statements about religion and ethics possess truth value, and hence can be known. As such the case such statements can be about facts. For example ‘Hitler is evil’ or ‘God exists’ is knowable in the sense that it corresponds to events that are occurring in the world. This view presents the correspondence theory of truth, which is what has now become to be known as early Wittgenstein’s writings. It argues that statements are true so far as in it paints a picture about the world it must relate to and derive meaning out of. As such the case religious and ethical truths are to be discovered. Ethical naturalists such as F.H. Bradley have argued that ethical language is about facts of the world. It is argued that moral statements which are subjective statements about values can be translated into facts or objective statements of fact. Thus it can be argued that ‘Hitler is evil’ is a true statement on the account that he was responsible for mass murder. This view was challenged by Hume. Hume argued that it is not possible to move......
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Conscience Is a Reliable Guide to Ethical Decision Making. Discuss.
...whether or not conscience is a reliable guide to ethical decision making can be approached in several ways and often only reaches a personal conclusion fueled by opinion. There are a number of ways in which conscience can be defined, one of which comes from Vincent Macnamara and is considered one of the more modern definitions, it is as follows. Macnamara says the conscience is not a voice but an attitude, he criticised Aquinas for referring to it as a “faculty” we possess. Macnamara regarded life as a moral path and said “it is up to us how we follow it”, furthermore he believes the attitude of our conscience shouldn't revolve around pleasure and profit. His belief is similar, in a way, to the virtue ethics approach and unfortunately boasts the same flaws, where it is hard to determine what is a virtue and what isn't, it's equally difficult to determine whether or not the attitude of our conscience is genuine. Another theory, put forward by Freud, and later developed by Piaget and Fromm, argues that conscience is more likely a result of environmental factors. This is typical of Freud's beliefs as he was first and foremost a psychologist and scientist with little time for the supernatural or divine. Sigmund Freud's definition of conscience links closely to a human beings feelings of guilt and fear of punishment, this suggests that people may act in order to get approval and could be easily seen as an unreliable guide to ethical decision making. Freud believed that the......
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'All Ethical Language Is Prescriptive' Discuss.
...“All Ethical Language is prescriptive” Discuss (35) The Philosopher R.M. Hare came up with the idea of prescriptivism and what he meant by this basically was that other people should agree with a statement and follow it due to ethical statements having an intrinsic sense. The role of ethical statements is to say what ‘ought’ to be done and such prescriptions are moral because they are universal. Hare then goes on to talk about the word ‘good’ and that we should always link it in relation to a set of standards, and this therefore means it has a descriptive meaning, however if we use the word ‘good’ in a moral sense it also has a prescriptive meaning. Hare is saying that there is a difference between a descriptive and prescriptive meaning, but when we use words with an ethical meaning, we use them prescriptively. However there are criticisms to Hare’s theory like you should put yourself in another person’s shoes before making a judgement as one person’s preferences may be different from another person. On the other hand philosopher G.E. Moore came up with the idea of intuitionism and he said that the word ‘good’ was indefinable and one prime example he used was that we know what ‘yellow’ is and can recognise it, but we can’t actually define what it is and he also says this about the word ‘good’. Moore also said that we can still say whether a moral statement is true or false through our intuition and that we can recognise good when we see it. There are also criticisms to this...
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Are Facilitating Payments Ethical? Why or Why Not? Discuss the Legal and Moral Implications.
...Are facilitating payments ethical? Why or why not? Discuss the legal and moral implications. A facilitating payment is referred to as, a form of payment, with which is made to foreign officials, yet it is not considered to be a form of bribery. Legally, facilitating payments are distinguished from bribery, yet this distinction possesses the ability to become blurred at times. The manner with which a facilitating payment is determined to be ethical, or non, is quite the difficult task for law enforcement officials. In most situations, law enforcement determines unethical practice based upon the surrounding terms, and conditions of the payment/gift. Less valuable "gifts" are usually considered to be ethically correct, yet larger, more expensive "gifts" poses the tendency to raise red flags in the eyes of law enforcement officials. Under those particular circumstances, law enforcement tends to examine the factors surrounding larger payments more intently. Small, minor valued "gifts" are considered customary, and legally acceptable in many countries, however, they do pose the threat of potential risk, in regards to liability, due to strict laws and regulatory guidelines, with which prohibit certain forms of "gift giving". Therefore, the terms with which surround this form of behavior, and the extent to which they are considered ethically correct or not, really depends upon the country with which this act takes place in. Also, one must note, that a "slippery slope" of......
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Ethical Language Is Meaningfull
...‘Ethical Language is meaningful’ Discuss The great discussion within Ethics is trying to unravel the meanings of essential terms, such as ‘good’ or ‘bad’, this differs from normative ethics, which tries to decide which things are good and bad and gives us a guide for moral behaviour – it’s the analysis of ethical language, but this also arises a question that many Ethicists and Philosophers have been asking for centuries - how meaningful is ethical language? This is known as Meta ethics. Ethical language has two separate approaches it can take – cognitive language which is realist and objective, being able to come up with ethical statements from nature and believing it to be true. For instance, if I said that rape is wrong, then I have given rape the property of wrongness, so according to a cognitivist my statement is objectively true or false and applies to everyone. On the other hand, you are able to follow a non-cognitivist route which is anti-realist and subjective. So they don’t agree that when making a moral statement it applies to all, but you are rather expressing feelings or telling people what to do, they are not descriptive so they can’t be described as true or false – they are subjective. The debate begins with Bradley who falls under the cognitive approach. He believes that we derive moral values from our society, we look at our community and from that we learn how to behave, so we use those morals that we have learnt and put them into practice in our......
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Understanding Prescriptive vs. Descriptive Grammar
...Bottom of Form Understanding Prescriptive vs. Descriptive Grammar When people hear about linguistics, they often believe that linguists are very much like the character Henry Higgins in the play My Fair Lady, who expresses sentiments like in the following song, where he bemoans the state of English and the lack of proper pronunciation: However, as you will learn in this first week of class, there are two different ways that language has been talked about in disciplines that focus on the use of language. We can talk about these different approaches to language as descriptive grammar vs. prescriptive grammar. Prescriptive grammar describes when people focus on talking about how a language should or ought to be used. One way to remember this association is to think of going to a doctor’s office. When a doctor gives you a prescription for medication, it often includes directions about how you should take your medication as well as what you should not do when taking your medication. In a similar way, a prescriptive grammar tells you how you should speak, and what type of language to avoid. This is commonly found in English classes as well as other language classes, where the aim is to teach people how to use language in a very particular (typically described as ‘proper’ or ‘correct’) way. Descriptive grammar, on the other hand, focuses on describing the language as it is used, not saying how it should be used. For example, think about a prescriptive rule like Don’t split......
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“Ideology Is the Origin of All Contemporary Conflicts” Discuss
...“Ideology is the origin of all contemporary conflicts” Discuss An ideology is a systematic body of concepts regarding human life or culture, or in simpler terms the core beliefs and customs of a group, for example the culture of democracy and capitalism in the majority of the western world. The current conflict in Syria can be regarded as contemporary as it is occurring in present day, but although the origin, how the conflict started, is due to the radicalist ideology of the ISIS islamic group, ideology in general cannot be regarded as the sole cause of all contemporary conflicts. On the 7th of October 2001, under a month after the infamous 9/11 attacks in Manhattan, the USA conducted their first airstrikes on targets in Afghanistan. The ‘War on Terror’ came after the Taliban Afghan government refused to hand over Osama Bin Laden and other Al-Qaeda leaders to the wrath of the US court system, demanding the USA give evidence of Bin Laden and other’s involvement and if so, they would be tried in an Islamic Court in Afghanistan. This conflict has been arguably the largest contemporarily, and the effects of 9/11 are still fully visible in today’s society, but it ultimately originated from a religious standpoint. Bin Laden announced a Jihad, or Holy War, against the United States with documents signed in 1998, calling for the killing of American citizens, due to the US’s support of conflicts against Muslims in various parts of the world including Somalia, Israel and Iraq.......
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Discuss the Ethical Dilmma Vallerie Is Facing
...the fragrances for their brands. Valerie’s manager, Lionel Waters, had been with the department for 14 years. He was hired by Wisson’s CEO at the time, after he had worked for big names in the fragrance industry. During Valerie’s first year at the company, the team worked with as many as eight different fragrance companies to have a good diversity of new scent ideas. After a while, they began using only perfumers from two fragrance companies for their projects. She was wondering why they stopped working with the other perfumers, because their submissions were not bad at all and they also successfully supply Wisson’s competitors. Why were these perfumers not good enough for Wisson? It did not take long for the team members to realize that Waters was not to be questioned. The team then went forward and developed great relationships with the perfumers of the two remaining fragrance houses. And then one day, it all became clear to Valerie. Hellriegel and Slocum (2011), She had some copies to make and walked to the copy room in the office area. As she was putting her originals in the copy machine, she saw that there was a paper jam, and the person who caused it left without taking care of it. She started to open the drawers of the paper supply and checked the output tray. There were some sheets that someone must have forgotten and she was going to throw them in the recycling container next to the copy machine. As soon as she grabbed the sheets, she saw that they looked like her......
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Ethical Language Meaningful
... Is ethical language meaningless? Discuss. Ethical language is meaningless. The analysis of ethical language is called meta-ethics. Meta-ethics looks at the meaning of the language used in ethics and includes questions such as: are ethical claims capable of being true or false, or are they expressions of emotion? If true, is that truth only relative to some individual, society or culture. Meta-ethics is broken down into cognitive and non-cognitive theories. This shows that there are two contrasting opinions to whether ethical language is meaningless. Cognitive theories of meta-ethics. Ethical naturalism is a cognitive theory of meta-ethics. Ethical naturalism or ethical cognitivism is the theory that moral values can be derived from sense experience. Ethical naturalism looks into cognitive and objective statements, it states ethical and non-ethical statements are the same, also that ethical statements can be verified and falsified. Criticisms of ethical naturalism – the naturalistic fallacy. The naturalistic fallacy is the claim that good cannot be defined. G.E. Moore argued against ethical naturalism and called the attempt to identify goodness with a natural quality a mistake. He uses the naturalistic fallacy to do this. Intuitionism – G.E. Moore. Intuitionism is the theory that moral truths are known by intuition. Moore’s intuitionism is a cognitive theory itself. It states good is indefinable, there are objective moral truths and we know these moral truths by......
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Religious Language Is Meaningless. Discuss (35)
...Religious language is the lexis used to describe or discuss views in relation to religion. Religious language has many different forms and expresses multiple meanings encompassing a variety of situations such as worship, practice, dogma and doctrine. This however means religious language is subjective and raises debate over whether it is meaningless or not. A collection of philosophers, the logical positivists, formulated the verification principle, which was developed by A. J. Ayer in order to combat the idea that religious language is meaningful. He thought that “God talk” was nonsense because it could not be verified analytically or synthetically. They believed that there were only 2 types of statements which are meaningful; tautologies (true by definition) and statements that can be verified by some kind of test. Following this theory, religious language is deemed meaningless because they believed it was metaphysical and there is no way to even test whether God exists. A. J. Ayer stated that there are 2 types of the verification princip0le. The first is strong verification, which is something we can verify for ourselves and the second is weak verification which relies on other people to verify it. John Hick was one of the main critics of the verification principle. He believed that we can’t write off all statements as meaningless. He put forward the idea of eschatological verification, saying that some things we will be able to verify after death, therefore we......
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Discuss the Idea That Men and Women Use Language Differently 
...The questions brings to mind so many different answers because although males and females are different biologically, the statement ‘men and women use language differently’ proposes the idea that we are different in so many other ways. It is said that women are more verbal than men who prefer action over words. However, it is difficult to generalise because individual differences plays a role and factors such as age, context, class, background, occupation and education will affect the amount of talk a person delivers and how much dominance they will have in the conversation. Table 1 shows how men and women cooperate in conversations with the use of turn taking, speaking time and interruptions. The average number of seconds all the women spoke for is 22.9 seconds and for men it is 60 seconds – clearly illustrating the idea that men like to speak more to get their opinions out in the world. Women are said to go along with this because they don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings and so would want them to continue. Also, we can see that men tended to interrupt more. Man F interrupted 8.0 times and Woman B interrupted 0.0 times. This clearly shows the gender inequalities between men and women, men being the ones that don’t care about feelings and women being the over-sensitive type in terms of supporting everyone’s opinions. On the other hand, we can see from the table that men interrupted eachother more. This may be because they have more subject knowledge and want to prove that...
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Choose Three Topics from the Languages Review Final Report 2008 and Discuss Their Importance to Language Teaching
...My aim here is to present three of the recommendations made in The Languages Review Final Report , presented in 2008. In doing so I acknowledge that many of the recommendations may have in fact already been actioned, however I will be presenting the report's recommendations as if they are still contemporary and relevant. 1) The first recommendation I would like to advance is from section 3.10 on Transition Coordination. The the proposal of the Training and Development Agency to develop an ages 9-14 training course I suggest would be greatly beneficial in facilitating the transition from Key stage 2 to key stage 3. The important need to do so is of course to harness the evident success of the introduction of MFLs at primary level in order to arrest their decline in uptake for GCSEs. Such a training course is essential to promote the smooth transition from Junior to secondary level by enabling teachers to coordinate activities between feeder schools and the secondary school. Questions about which languages are taught at the schools and be posed and how these can be accommodated. It will be possible to look at whether teaching staff and materials can be shared. And ideas can be discussed such as the possible introduction of a language passport for each student, so that each teacher can easily identify the current linguistic skill levels and of a student, which languages are have been learnt or are already spoken and the be better able to tailor lessons to individual needs. As......
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What use is ethics?Ethics needs to provide answers. Photo: Geoffrey Holman ©
If ethical theories are to be useful in practice, they need to affect the way human beings behave.
Some philosophers think that ethics does do this. They argue that if a person realises that it would be morally good to do something then it would be irrational for that person not to do it.
But human beings often behave irrationally - they follow their 'gut instinct' even when their head suggests a different course of action.
However, ethics does provide good tools for thinking about moral issues.
Ethics can provide a moral map
Most moral issues get us pretty worked up - think of abortion and euthanasia for starters. Because these are such emotional issues we often let our hearts do the arguing while our brains just go with the flow.
But there's another way of tackling these issues, and that's where philosophers can come in - they offer us ethical rules and principles that enable us to take a cooler view of moral problems.
So ethics provides us with a moral map, a framework that we can use to find our way through difficult issues.
Ethics can pinpoint a disagreement
Using the framework of ethics, two people who are arguing a moral issue can often find that what they disagree about is just one particular part of the issue, and that they broadly agree on everything else.
That can take a lot of heat out of the argument, and sometimes even hint at a way for them to resolve their problem.
But sometimes ethics doesn't provide people with the sort of help that they really want.
Ethics doesn't give right answers
Ethics doesn't always show the right answer to moral problems.
Indeed more and more people think that for many ethical issues there isn't a single right answer - just a set of principles that can be applied to particular cases to give those involved some clear choices.
Some philosophers go further and say that all ethics can do is eliminate confusion and clarify the issues. After that it's up to each individual to come to their own conclusions.
Ethics can give several answers
Many people want there to be a single right answer to ethical questions. They find moral ambiguity hard to live with because they genuinely want to do the 'right' thing, and even if they can't work out what that right thing is, they like the idea that 'somewhere' there is one right answer.
But often there isn't one right answer - there may be several right answers, or just some least worst answers - and the individual must choose between them.
For others moral ambiguity is difficult because it forces them to take responsibility for their own choices and actions, rather than falling back on convenient rules and customs.
Ethics and people
Ethics is about the 'other'Ethics is concerned with other people ©
At the heart of ethics is a concern about something or someone other than ourselves and our own desires and self-interest.
Ethics is concerned with other people's interests, with the interests of society, with God's interests, with "ultimate goods", and so on.
So when a person 'thinks ethically' they are giving at least some thought to something beyond themselves.
Ethics as source of group strength
One problem with ethics is the way it's often used as a weapon.
If a group believes that a particular activity is "wrong" it can then use morality as the justification for attacking those who practice that activity.
When people do this, they often see those who they regard as immoral as in some way less human or deserving of respect than themselves; sometimes with tragic consequences.
Good people as well as good actions
Ethics is not only about the morality of particular courses of action, but it's also about the goodness of individuals and what it means to live a good life.
Virtue Ethics is particularly concerned with the moral character of human beings.
Searching for the source of right and wrong
At times in the past some people thought that ethical problems could be solved in one of two ways:
- by discovering what God wanted people to do
- by thinking rigorously about moral principles and problems
If a person did this properly they would be led to the right conclusion.
But now even philosophers are less sure that it's possible to devise a satisfactory and complete theory of ethics - at least not one that leads to conclusions.
Modern thinkers often teach that ethics leads people not to conclusions but to 'decisions'.
In this view, the role of ethics is limited to clarifying 'what's at stake' in particular ethical problems.
Philosophy can help identify the range of ethical methods, conversations and value systems that can be applied to a particular problem. But after these things have been made clear, each person must make their own individual decision as to what to do, and then react appropriately to the consequences.
Four ethical 'isms'
When a person says "murder is bad" what are they doing?
That's the sort of question that only a philosopher would ask, but it's actually a very useful way of getting a clear idea of what's going on when people talk about moral issues.
The different 'isms' regard the person uttering the statement as doing different things.
We can show some of the different things I might be doing when I say 'murder is bad' by rewriting that statement to show what I really mean:
- I might be making a statement about an ethical fact
- "It is wrong to murder"
- This is moral realism
- I might be making a statement about my own feelings
- "I disapprove of murder"
- This is subjectivism
- I might be expressing my feelings
- "Down with murder"
- This is emotivism
- I might be giving an instruction or a prohibition
- "Don't murder people"
- This is prescriptivism
Moral realism is based on the idea that there are real objective moral facts or truths in the universe. Moral statements provide factual information about those truths.
Subjectivism teaches that moral judgments are nothing more than statements of a person's feelings or attitudes, and that ethical statements do not contain factual truths about goodness or badness.
In more detail: subjectivists say that moral statements are statements about the feelings, attitudes and emotions that that particular person or group has about a particular issue.
If a person says something is good or bad they are telling us about the positive or negative feelings that they have about that something.
So if someone says 'murder is wrong' they are telling us that they disapprove of murder.
These statements are true if the person does hold the appropriate attitude or have the appropriate feelings. They are false if the person doesn't.
Emotivism is the view that moral claims are no more than expressions of approval or disapproval.
This sounds like subjectivism, but in emotivism a moral statement doesn't provide information about the speaker's feelings about the topic but expresses those feelings.
When an emotivist says "murder is wrong" it's like saying "down with murder" or "murder, yecch!" or just saying "murder" while pulling a horrified face, or making a thumbs-down gesture at the same time as saying "murder is wrong".
So when someone makes a moral judgement they show their feelings about something. Some theorists also suggest that in expressing a feeling the person gives an instruction to others about how to act towards the subject matter.
Prescriptivists think that ethical statements are instructions or recommendations.
So if I say something is good, I'm recommending you to do it, and if I say something is bad, I'm telling you not to do it.
There is almost always a prescriptive element in any real-world ethical statement: any ethical statement can be reworked (with a bit of effort) into a statement with an 'ought' in it. For example: "lying is wrong" can be rewritten as "people ought not to tell lies".
Where does ethics come from?
Philosophers have several answers to this question:
- God and religion
- Human conscience and intuition
- a rational moral cost-benefit analysis of actions and their effects
- the example of good human beings
- a desire for the best for people in each unique situation
- political power
God-based ethics - supernaturalism
Supernaturalism makes ethics inseparable from religion. It teaches that the only source of moral rules is God.
So, something is good because God says it is, and the way to lead a good life is to do what God wants.
Intuitionists think that good and bad are real objective properties that can't be broken down into component parts. Something is good because it's good; its goodness doesn't need justifying or proving.
Intuitionists think that goodness or badness can be detected by adults - they say that human beings have an intuitive moral sense that enables them to detect real moral truths.
They think that basic moral truths of what is good and bad are self-evident to a person who directs their mind towards moral issues.
So good things are the things that a sensible person realises are good if they spend some time pondering the subject.
Don't get confused. For the intuitionist:
- moral truths are not discovered by rational argument
- moral truths are not discovered by having a hunch
- moral truths are not discovered by having a feeling
It's more a sort of moral 'aha' moment - a realisation of the truth.
This is the ethical theory that most non-religious people think they use every day. It bases morality on the consequences of human actions and not on the actions themselves.
Consequentialism teaches that people should do whatever produces the greatest amount of good consequences.
One famous way of putting this is 'the greatest good for the greatest number of people'.
The most common forms of consequentialism are the various versions of utilitarianism, which favour actions that produce the greatest amount of happiness.
Despite its obvious common-sense appeal, consequentialism turns out to be a complicated theory, and doesn't provide a complete solution to all ethical problems.
Two problems with consequentialism are:
- it can lead to the conclusion that some quite dreadful acts are good
- predicting and evaluating the consequences of actions is often very difficult
Non-consequentialism or deontological ethics
Non-consequentialism is concerned with the actions themselves and not with the consequences. It's the theory that people are using when they refer to "the principle of the thing".
It teaches that some acts are right or wrong in themselves, whatever the consequences, and people should act accordingly.
Virtue ethics looks at virtue or moral character, rather than at ethical duties and rules, or the consequences of actions - indeed some philosophers of this school deny that there can be such things as universal ethical rules.
Virtue ethics is particularly concerned with the way individuals live their lives, and less concerned in assessing particular actions.
It develops the idea of good actions by looking at the way virtuous people express their inner goodness in the things that they do.
To put it very simply, virtue ethics teaches that an action is right if and only if it is an action that a virtuous person would do in the same circumstances, and that a virtuous person is someone who has a particularly good character.
Situation ethics rejects prescriptive rules and argues that individual ethical decisions should be made according to the unique situation.
Rather than following rules the decision maker should follow a desire to seek the best for the people involved. There are no moral rules or rights - each case is unique and deserves a unique solution.
Ethics and ideology
Some philosophers teach that ethics is the codification of political ideology, and that the function of ethics is to state, enforce and preserve particular political beliefs.
They usually go on to say that ethics is used by the dominant political elite as a tool to control everyone else.
More cynical writers suggest that power elites enforce an ethical code on other people that helps them control those people, but do not apply this code to their own behaviour.
Are there universal moral rules?
One of the big questions in moral philosophy is whether or not there are unchanging moral rules that apply in all cultures and at all times.
Some people think there are such universal rules that apply to everyone. This sort of thinking is called moral absolutism.
Moral absolutism argues that there are some moral rules that are always true, that these rules can be discovered and that these rules apply to everyone.
Immoral acts - acts that break these moral rules - are wrong in themselves, regardless of the circumstances or the consequences of those acts.
Absolutism takes a universal view of humanity - there is one set of rules for everyone - which enables the drafting of universal rules - such as the Declaration of Human Rights.
Religious views of ethics tend to be absolutist.
Why people disagree with moral absolutism:
- Many of us feel that the consequences of an act or the circumstances surrounding it are relevant to whether that act is good or bad
- Absolutism doesn't fit with respect for diversity and tradition
Moral relativists say that if you look at different cultures or different periods in history you'll find that they have different moral rules.
Therefore it makes sense to say that "good" refers to the things that a particular group of people approve of.
Moral relativists think that that's just fine, and dispute the idea that there are some objective and discoverable 'super-rules' that all cultures ought to obey. They believe that relativism respects the diversity of human societies and responds to the different circumstances surrounding human acts.
Why people disagree with moral relativism:
- Many of us feel that moral rules have more to them than the general agreement of a group of people - that morality is more than a super-charged form of etiquette
- Many of us think we can be good without conforming to all the rules of society
- Moral relativism has a problem with arguing against the majority view: if most people in a society agree with particular rules, that's the end of the matter. Many of the improvements in the world have come about because people opposed the prevailing ethical view - moral relativists are forced to regard such people as behaving "badly"
- Any choice of social grouping as the foundation of ethics is bound to be arbitrary
- Moral relativism doesn't provide any way to deal with moral differences between societies
Most non-philosophers think that both of the above theories have some good points and think that
- there are a few absolute ethical rules
- but a lot of ethical rules depend on the culture