Contemporary Ethical TheorySpring 1998

Instructor: Richard Lee
Course number: Philosophy 4133
Time: TT 12:30 p.m. - 1:50 p.m.
Room: MAIN 208

Brief Description:
This course will consist of a careful look at theories of ethics advanced by philosophers in the twentieth century. We will work from the beginnings of twentieth century ethical thought with the "open question argument" of G.E. Moore, through the emotive theory of ethics, to the views of more current writers on the nature of ethics. We will look at problems and developments of utilitarianism and deontology. We will look at arguments favoring moral scepticism and moral realism and will explore several approaches to the problem of providing justification for fundamental ethical principles.

A background of at least one previous course in philosophy is required. Apart from that this course is open to all students interested in the foundations of moral right and wrong.

Steven M. Cahn & Joram G. Haber, editors, 20th Century Ethical Theory (Prentice Hall, 1995)

Other information:

Richard Lee,, last modified: 30 April 1998