Utilitarianism is a political-ethical theory that was developed by Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill and that claims “all actions should be directed toward achieving the greatest happiness for the greatest number of people”. By utility of actions what meant by Mill, is the satisfaction of actions to produce happiness in the society. By happiness, what he meant is intended pleasure or the prevention of pain. Mill also tries to define the essence of real pleasure. Mill’s pleasure conception is not only about bodily pleasures that are based on instincts, appetites. Mill claims that this kind of pleasures is not satisfactory for humans that are above animals because of their capacity of mind. In Mill’s understanding mental pleasures are superior to bodily pleasures. So, Mill claims that being a fool satisfied is not as valuable as being a wise person who is not satisfied. In addition to the importance of the type (quality) of pleasure, what is most important for Mill is the quantity of this pleasure. Mill thinks that little high quality pleasure is more valuable than a lot of low quality pleasure. Moreover, in his view an action should not be called just when it promotes happiness only for a small group of people or a single individual. From a utilitarian approach, actions are expected to produce pleasure, happiness for maximum amount of people if possible for the whole community. So, Mill believes that real justice can only be derived from people’s intellectual maturity and moral level that will help them to realize that the important is to behave according to the benefits of the society instead of self-profit. Mill calls this intellectual and moral maturity as the biggest virtue in the world. “I fully acknowledge that the readiness to make such a sacrifice is the highest virtue which can be found in man” (Mill, pg 147). However, this sacrifice can be accepted as good and as a virtue only if it produces happiness for the society. Otherwise, it is nothing but a waste. “A sacrifice which does not increase, or tend to increase, the sum total of happiness, it considers as wasted” (Mill, pg 148).
John Stuart Mill also makes a clear distinction between high and low pleasure, an aspect that his tutor Jeremy Bentham did not deal with. That is why; we can claim that Mill’s unique…
with one’s own advantage. The Utilitarianism is the moral doctrine that
we should act in ways that produce the most pleasure or happiness for the greatest number of
people affected by our actions. Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill used the utilitarian
standard to evaluate and criticize the social and political institutions of their day. Although
Bentham and Mill had different conceptions of pleasure, both men equated pleasure and
happiness and considered pleasure the ultimate value. Anything…
Outline the key features of utilitarianism (539 words)
This theory of utilitarianism was defined by Jeremy Bentham. Utilitarianism is a consequentialist theory which means that moral actions are evaluated by the consequences or outcomes of the action. The theory suggests that there is one rule/maxim that everyone should follow in order to determine what is right and wrong, i.e. the principle of ‘utility’ which suggests that everyone should do the most useful thing which serves the greatest…
West Valley College
The notion of an ethics based on utility — usefulness for human concerns, especially human happiness — was one of the revolutionary Continental ideas of the Enlightenment period. Cesare Beccaria (1738-1794), for example, in his extremely influential work On Crimes and Punishments, argues that punishments should be inflicted only insofar as they are useful for human purposes; and that governments should not think themselves free to punish inhumanely…
A DEBATE OVER
In the elements of moral philosophy
By J. Rachels
Presented by – Nida Naqvi
UTILITARIAN APPROACH TO ETHICS
Jeremy Bentham’s motto “the greatest good for the greatest
A legal reformer who lived during the 18th and the 19th centuries
Objective – provide publicly acceptable norm for determining
what kind of laws England should enact. Example Theft analysis
John Stuart Mill (1806 – 1873)
“ The Utilitarian doctrine is that happiness is desirable…
Kant’s Categorical Imperative.
Utilitarianism revolves around the idea that an act is morally right or permissible if it produces the greatest utility (happiness/pleasure) for the greatest number and wrong if it produces unhappiness or pain. First-generation Utilitarian, Jeremy Bentham, suggested that the value of pleasures and pains of actions could be determined by a list of conditions. Among these conditions was intensity, which is how strong the produced pleasure would be. Duration, which is how…
1. Classical Utilitarianism, the theory of Bentham and Mill, can be summarized in three propositions:
a. The morality o an action depends solely on the consequences of the action, nothing else matters.
b. An action consequences matter only insofar as they involves the greater or lesser happiness of individuals.
c. In the assessment of consequences, each individual’s happiness gets “equal consideration “.
2. Define Hedonism: The thesis that pleasure is the one ultimate…
weaknesses of Utilitarianism
Utilitarianism is a teleological theory first devised by Jeremy Bentham. The theory focuses on the ‘greatest happiness for the greatest number’. Utilitarianism is a teleological theory; the end justifies the means, and thus a thinker would judge the rightness of an action by the end it produces, whether right or wrong. For example, stealing food for your starving family is justified because it results in a good end.
One strength of Act Utilitarianism is that it concentrates…
The Management Team of Pleasure Craft INC.
From: Group A+
Subject: Expanding Production
Date: September 29, 2010
Since beginning 40 years ago, Pleasure Craft INC. has been successful in both the domestic and international marketplace. Currently producing two products, snowmobiles and personal watercraft, both of which have become mature markets and thus giving little room to grow, two options have been determined to further the growth of Pleasure Craft INC.. First being…
The Schiavos, Rule Utilitarianism, and Kantian Ethics
The case of “The Schiavos” is focused primarily on one member of the family, which is Terri Schiavo. Terri had been in a coma for 13 years. Although, “no one is completely sure what happened but the best guess is she suffered a heart attack” (Pierce, 64) presumably caused by her bulimia. Due to the severity of her heart attack, it left Terri with severe brain damaged which in turn left her in a persistent vegetative state which leaves…