Consequentialism

The final graded assignment is an 8–10-page paper about the question: what is the good life? This assignment will be completed in four parts, so you may want to use section headers to organize your paper. This paper is somewhat cumulative, so you may need to review material from previous weeks to prepare for this essay. Remember to explain the theories you reference with supporting citations to the textbook and online lectures before contrasting them. You may want to use examples to illustrate your understanding of key ideas from each theory. Your paper should be formatted in APA style. Use this APA Citation Helper as a convenient reference for properly citing resources.

Address the following in your paper:

  1. The Consequentialism Debate: Compare and contrast deontology and utilitarianism. Briefly discuss the differences between Bentham and Mill’s versions of utilitarianism. Discuss the political and ethical implications of utilitarianism.
  2. Explain virtue ethics and care ethics and discuss how these approaches offer an alternative to the deontological and utilitarian focus on how we should act.
  3. Explain the political and ethical dimension of existentialism and at least one other social philosophy that addresses discrimination on the basis of race/ethnicity, gender, class, and/or sexual identity. The explanation of existentialism should discuss the following ideas: authenticity, ambiguity, freedom, anxiety, and bad faith.
  4. Choose a social justice issue. A social justice issue is one that characterizes and critiques a given practice, policy/law, and/or situation as unfair, unjust, and/or unethical. For example, you might discuss a specific example of discrimination on the basis of gender/sex, race, sexual identity, ethnicity, or religious faith; economic injustice/wage inequality; taxation; or a violation of an asserted human right, such as the right to gun ownership, healthcare, education, or freedom from undue government interference. A good topic will make claims to both political/social justice and ethics. Analyze the issue and discuss how some of the theories explained in parts 1–3 might relate to the issue. You may need to do additional research on the issue in order to complete this part of the assignment.

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