Explain the forms of utilitarianism essay

Basil Blackwell,pp. That movement, as I conceive it, is committed to a number of goals, including: There are, I know, people who profess to believe in animal rights but do not avow these goals. Factory farming, they say, is wrong - it violates animals' rights - but traditional animal agriculture is all right.

Explain the forms of utilitarianism essay

Hire Writer His theory is democratic as pleasure cannot be for one person alone. It asks you to consider seven points: Purity an act that causes only pleasure is better than one that causes the same amount of pleasure mixed with a little pain.

Remoteness the more distant the benefits, in either space or time, the less weight we should give them in making our decision. For example how long will it take for the pleasure of the action to take effect.

Intensity the less intense the pleasure of an action the less valuable that action is.

Explain the forms of utilitarianism essay

However, if the action leads to intense pleasure then its value goes way up. Certainty the certainty criteria refers to the probability of the pleasure resulting from the act. So basically how likely a certain action will cause a cause a certain action.

If you have to choose between an action which might cause pleasure and one that will definately cause the disired pealsure then you go with that action.

Extent The more people enjoy the pleasure, the better. This was not among the original criteria described by Bentham, but was added by John Stuart Mill. Duration the duration of the pleasure caused by an act must also be taken into account when assessing the goodness of the act.

Short bursts of pleasure or short lasting pleasure is viewed as less valuable than lasting pleasure.


So acts which last for long periods of time are preferred to those which are short lasting. Consequence The consequence of an act is the likelihood that the pleasures or pains that it causes will be followed by similar pleasures or pains.

If the happiness that an act causes is likely to be followed by more happiness, then that act is better than a similar act that will cause only one instance of happiness.

Burdens | Slate Star Codex

It is basically how many times the pain or pleasure will occur. For example if five guards were enjoying torturing one prisoner the hedonic calculus would suggest that this is ok because more pleasure is occurring than pain.

If the probable pain of an action outweighs its pleasure then Bentham says that it is morally wrong. He believed this was the way of calculating happiness as a result of the course of an action and by this he was making the basis of deciding whether an action should be considered right or wrong.

He recognised that it was easier to settle for the more immediate and sensual pleasures like eating or drinking rather than the nobler and perhaps more refined ones such as poetry or opera.

Mill criticised Bentham for focusing morality on pleasure alone, which seemed rather base to him.To download this slideshow as a pdf file, click here.

To download this slideshow as a powerpoint file, click here. To add this slideshow to your website, copy and paste the embed code below. John Stuart Mill's book Utilitarianism is a classic exposition and defence of utilitarianism in ethics.

The essay first appeared as a series of three articles published in Fraser's Magazine in ; the articles were collected and reprinted as a single book in Mill's aim in the book is to explain what utilitarianism is, to show why it is the best theory of ethics, and to defend it. Utilitarianism is an ethical theory that states that the best action is the one that maximizes utility, which is usually defined as that which produces the greatest well-being of the greatest number of people, and in some cases, sentient animals.

Jeremy Bentham, the founder of utilitarianism, described utility as the sum of all pleasure that results from an action, minus the suffering of. Utilitarianism is one of the most powerful and persuasive approaches to normative ethics in the history of philosophy. Though not fully articulated until the 19 th century, proto-utilitarian positions can be discerned throughout the history of ethical theory..

Though there are many varieties of the view discussed, utilitarianism is generally held to be the view that the morally right action is. Summary. Utilitarianism, by John Stuart Mill, is an essay written to provide support for the value of utilitarianism as a moral theory, and to respond to misconceptions about it.

Mill defines utilitarianism as a theory based on the principle that "actions are right in proportion as they tend to promote happiness, wrong as they tend to produce the reverse of happiness.".

Definition of Utilitarianism Utilitarianism is an ethical theory developed in the modern period by Jeremy Bentham () and John Stuart Mill () to promote fairness in British legislation during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries when the interests of the upper classes tended to prevail and the sufferings of the lower classes were neglected/5(20).

The History of Utilitarianism (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)