Author(s): Ben Dupre
Questions of ethics - about how we should act, our responsibilities to one another, the difference between right and wrong - have long been debated by philosophers the world over and form the foundations of government, culture and religion. Here, in concise, easy-to-read chapters, Ben Dupre explains the fundamentals of this discipline and how it is relevant to our lives today. Covering essential ethical concepts, including relativism, the golden rule and utilitarianism, as well as high-profile issues such as terrorism, censorship and the death penalty, 50 Ethics Ideas You Really Need to Know will lead you through the moral maze - and rattle your conscience in the process.
Ben Dupre read Classics at Exeter College, Oxford, before pursuing a career in publishing. Until 2004 he was children's reference publisher at Oxford University Press. He is the author of Places of Destiny (published in the US as Where History was Made), 50 Big Ideas You Really Need to Know, 50 Political Ideas You Really Need to Know and the bestselling 50 Philosophy Ideas You Really Need to Know. A devotee of baseball and early music, Ben lives in Oxford with his family.
Introduction. MORAL FOUNDATIONS: The good life. Divine command. Right and wrong. Moral realism. Moral subjectivism. Relativism. The Ring of Gyges. Moral intuitions. HOW SHOULD WE LIVE? The golden rule. The harm principle. Ends and means. Utilitarianism. Kantian ethics. Prima facie duties. Double effect. Acts and omissions. Moral luck. Free will. The social contract. Virtue ethics. Humanism. Nihilism. VIRTUES AND OTHER GOOD THINGS: Justice. Equality. Tolerance. Rights. Altruism. Friendship. Heroes and saints. Integrity. VICES AND OTHER BAD THINGS: Crime and punishment. The death penalty. Torture. Corruption. Terrorism. Censorship. Drugs. HUMANS AND OTHER ANIMALS: Animal liberation. The research paradox. Eating animals. BIOETHICS: The sanctity of life. Death. Genetic engineering. Cloning. GLOBAL ETHICS: War. Realpolitik. Capitalism. Lifeboat Earth. Poverty. The environment. Glossary. Index.