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PHIL 152 Recent Ethical Theory


Catalogue Description
Major topics in ethical theory with attention to their contemporary formulation, including such topics as utilitarianism vs. rights-based theories and the dispute over the objectivity of ethics. 3 units, upper division.

Course Description
This course is primarily designed around contemporary developments in the dispute over the objectivity of ethics. As such it will offer an opportunity to explore meta-ethical issues on the nature of ethical value and moral propositions. The focus is on the major schools of 20th Century meta-ethics: intuitionism, emotivism, subjectivism, realism, and rationalism. Each of these schools or approaches embraces unique claims and assumptions about the nature of ethical values, the metaphysics involved in their existence or non-existence, and the epistemology of moral propositions and judgements.

This is an UPPER division course, designed with philosophy majors in mind and for those advanced students who have some familiarity with ethics. For students who have taken neither an ethics nor philosophy class before, I would recommend postponing taking this course until you have attained some familiarity with both. The Philosophy Department has several such courses on offer each semester.



Course Material


Resources & Interests

Syllabus (PDF)
Grading Policy
Course Policies (Must Read!)
Department Writing Guide

All required readings and essay assignments are found at our SacCT course page.

Academic Honesty Policy
(must read!)

Nammour Symposium (TBA)
Campus Events (TBA)
Philosophy News: NY Times

Philosophy Talk Radio
Philosophy Now
Stanford Encyc of Philosophy
Internet Encyc of Philosophy

Updated: 22 January, 2009