††††††††††† Preface


1.                  Introduction:What Is Ethics?

Simple Moral Reasoning, and the Fraudulent Doc

Complex Moral Reasoning, and Two Tragic Cases

Defending Moral Principles



An Overview of Normative Theories

Questions for Reflection

Further Readings


2.                  Subjectivism:Is Morality an Illusion?

The Humean Being


Two Forms of Subjectivism

Subjectivism and Argumentation


Expanding the Circle

Questions for Reflection

Further Readings


3.                  Cultural Relativism:Does Each Culture Invent its Own Morality?

Alternatives to Universalism

The Case for Cultural Relativism

Assessing the Argument from Diversity

Consequences of Cultural Relativism


Questions for Reflection

Further Readings


4.                  The Divine Command View:Is Morality Godís Invention?

The Divine Command Theory and Human Nature

The Natural Law Theory

The Argument from Natural Law Theory

Test Tube Babies and Clones

Questions for Reflection

Further Readings


5.                  Hedonism:Is the Pleasant Life the Best Life?

Value Hedonism Defended

The Appeal to Nature

Psychological Hedonism

First Defense:The Argument by Extended Satisfaction

Second Defense:Appeal to Introspection

Counterargument:The Hedonistic Paradox

The Electronic Voluptuary

Gautama and Epicurus:Negative Happiness

Epicurus on Death

The No-Self Doctrine

Negative Hedonism Assessed

Questions for Reflection

Further Readings


6.                  Perfectionism:Do We Live Best When We Excel?

Confucius and the Self-Realization Theory of the Good

Becoming a Person

Roles and Relationships

Reservations and Alternatives

The Nature Based Account of the Good

Daoism and Spontaneity

Aristotle and Human Flourishing


Perfectionism and Exemplary Conduct

Virtue Ethics

True Person, True Friend

Questions for Reflection

Further Readings


7.                  Ethical Egoism:Is Duty a Matter of Self-Enhancement?

The Incapacity Defense

Initial Difficulties

Main Difficulty:Psychological Egoism

The Consequentialist Defense

The Reconciliation Defense and the Prisonerís Dilemma

Ourselves, Others, and the Paradox of Altruism

The Malleability of Identity

Questions for Reflection

Further Readings


8.                  Utilitarianism:Does Duty Consist in Maximizing the Collective Good?

Classical Utilitarianism and Extreme Altruism

Reservations about Classical Utilitarianism

The Case of the Ruthless Major

The Organ ĎDonorí Case

The Case of the Chronic Sufferer

Objectionable Impartiality Cases

Two-Tiered Utilitarianism

The Exceptions Objection

The Bad Rules Objection

Optimizing Versus Aggregating

Acts and Omissions, Killing and Letting Die

Questions for Reflection

Further Readings


9.                  Kantianism:Is Duty Respect for Humanity?

Morality Versus Prudence

Applying the Categorical Imperative

Consequences and Intentions

Absolutism and Conflicts of Duties

Respect for Persons


Dianeís Suicide

Questions for Reflection

Further Readings


10.              Contractarianism:Is Duty the Outcome of an Ideal Agreement?

Hobbes and Interest-Based Contractarianism

The State of Nature and Absolute Sovereignty

Interest-Based Contractarianism

Locke and Democratic Contractarianism

The Basis of Liberty and Equality

Lockeís Account of the Social Contract\

Lockeís Successors:Rousseau, Kant, Rawls, Scanlon

Freedom of Religion

Questions for Reflection

Further Readings


11.              The Contemporary Debate:What are Some Contemporary Approaches to Ethics?

A Moral Framework

The Principle of Respect for Self-determination

The Principle of Beneficence

The Principle of Non-maleficence

The Principle of Justice


Virtue Ethics

Feminism and the Ethics of Care

Private and Public Spheres of Life

Questions for Reflection

Further Readings


††††††††††† Index