No theory is perfect or applicable in all cases. There is more than one path to get the same result. There are three major approaches in normative ethics including virtue ethics, deontological ethics, and utilitarianism. This paper is going to compare the similarities and differences between virtue theory, utilitarianism, and deontological ethics.
It will include a description of the differences in how each theory addresses ethics and morality and it will also discuss an experience to explain the relationship between virtue, values, and moral concepts as they relate to one of the three theories.
Differences in How These Theories Address Ethics and Morality Virtue ethics, deontological ethics, and utilitarianism are the three major approaches in normative ethics. Virtue ethics emphasizes the virtues, or moral character, while deontology emphasizes duties or rules, and utilitarianism emphasizes the consequences of actions.
Virtue ethics is also called agent-based or character ethics. According to Boylan , when using the virtue ethics approach, one should take the viewpoint that in living their life they should try to cultivate excellence in all that they do. It encourages people to develop their character as the basis for the good life.
Utilitarianism is a form of consequentialism, meaning that the moral worth of an action is determined by its outcome. Utilitarianism suggests that an action is morally right when that action produces more total utility for the group than any other alternative Boylan, Deontological ethics is opposed to consequentialism.
Deontology maintains the wrongness of actions resides in the kind of action that it is, rather than the consequences it brings about. Thus far we have seen that both utilitarianism and deontology hold different views in regard to what is most natural ethical theory.
Now it is time to consider what has become known as the Virtue Theory. For Aristotle, the end or final cause of human existence is eudemonia. Ethics poses questions of how we should handle situations and act in relationships. Second, moral judgments are not social judgments.
Lastly, being moral does not equate to acting legally. How people choose to deal with issues tells the world who they are. How do you make a moral decision? You can flip a coin. You can roll dice. Usually people go with their gut instincts. Moral reflection is essentially self actualization which compels people to analyze their decisions.
Typically people debate about social issues such as abortion, euthanasia, and everyday personal concerns. These issues are moral judgments not a matter of taste or preference. Americans have enacted laws based on moral concerns not matters of taste.
Moral issues are routinely taken to Congress in order to enact laws concerning American citizens. Many people confuse moral judgments with social judgments. Halberstam researched Southeast Asians cuisine and found many Asians consider monkey brains to be a delicacy p.
Asians frequently dine on monkey brains, which most Americans would find repulsive. However, consumption of monkey brains is no more a moral repulsion than consumption of fried chickens. The issue of whether or not to dine on monkey brains would usually be considered a social judgment not a moral judgment Halberstam, , p.
However, if a particular culture worshiped monkeys then the issue could be considered a moral judgment. Moral judgments, unlike matters of taste are supported by reason Halberstam, , p. People are allowed to prefer a certain food over another, the same as they are allowed to prefer wearing clothes made by a particular designer over another. An example of moral judgment would be presented if a designer employed children in sweatshops to make his or her clothes.
Moral beliefs are inner beliefs that ultimately guide outward actions. Morality and the law are often connected. For example some comedians tell sexist and ethnic jokes. Legally the comedian has a right to free speech, however those jokes may be considered morally offensive. In most societies people want the law to reflect morality, but there is a fine line between the two.
Therefore most people haven chosen not to make being a liar an illegal act; only to question the morality and character of people that lie. The main virtues that support business transactions are: Lack of any of the previously mentioned virtues can severely hinder and harm a business. According to Lewis in A Question of Vales: Being honest and truthful has been found to be the most emotionally challenged and judged virtue.
Integrity incorporates a broad range of ethical characteristics. You could say that to maintain integrity is to avoid situations that violate your sense of completeness or wholeness. You are a lawyer with a firm and you are propositioned by a client to do legal work outside of the firm. You feel this opportunity may help you advance in your career.
Also the likelihood of anyone finding out about this business transaction is unlikely. If you were a person of integrity what would you do? I you value the virtue of integrity you would likely decline the offer, due to your loyalty and commitment to the firm. Individuals that value integrity usually value honesty as well. On the other hand individuals that have not fully developed their sense of virtue emotionally agonize between being truthful and being dishonest.
Even in difficult situations a truly virtuous person will always be honest. Businesses that have complete trust convey reliability and integrity to their consumers and counterparts.
Fairness often relates to doing the right thing in any given situation. In sales and marketing environments associates often have collective team and individual objectives or sales goals to meet monthly. In order to make the sales objectives fair, upper management assess multiple components, such as the number of sales associates on a team and the amount of sales experience of each individual. It would be unfair for an associate with one month of experience to have the same goals as an associate with one year of service.
It would also be unfair for a team of 6 members to have the same sales goals as a team with 10 members. The team would be at a disadvantage either by lack of experience or the number of sales agents.
Moral leadership is a virtue that encompasses strength of character, peace of mind heart, and happiness in life. A person that posses moral leadership will always rely on their virtues to guide them. Just because everyone is capable of these things does not mean that everyone will do them. Since we are all capable of basically the same things, but we do not all fulfill these capacities we cannot be held accountable for them.
The only thing that virtue could be is a disposition, because it is not a feeling or a capacity. Since virtue is a disposition we are responsible for the choices that we make based on personal vice and virtue. How virtuous a person is determines how they will behave in a given situation.
Aristotle argued that since different people may act differently in the same situation there are no inherently bad actions. The Virtue Theory claims that an action is good if performed by a person based on virtue and bad if performed based on vice. This enforces the thesis that virtue is a disposition because a virtuous person will theoretically make the right choice in any situation. Arguments can be made both for and against this thesis.
One example of where the thesis can be applied is in the situation of self-defense. If a woman is attacked by a man with a gun and is about to be violently raped, but somehow gets the gun away from the man and shoots him to save herself, it will not be said that she is a bad person or that what she did was wrong.
It will most likely be said that she is brave and that she did what was right given the situation. An argument against the thesis is that some actions are morally wrong on every level. Christianity and Judaism both describe actions that are bad, independent of the person performing the action. For example, Christianity says that it is wrong for a person to kill another person. Therefore, someone who kills another person has done a bad thing whether they have good or bad character traits doesn't matter, because the action itself is not moral.
I personally believe that there are actions that in most cases are wrong. Murder, adultery, and stealing are all bad behaviors.
Aristotle Virtue Ethics Essays Words | 4 Pages. Aristotle's Virtue Ethics The philosophy of virtue ethics, which primarily deals with the ways in which a person should live, has puzzled philosophers from the beginning of time. There are many contrasting interpretations regarding how one should live his or her life in the best way possible.
Virtue ethics is a system of ethics that emphasizes on the virtues or the moral character of the people. This means that it is based on what the person had done if he .
Virtue Ethics Essay Examples. 12 total results. An Essay on the Principle of Virtue Ethics. 1, words. 3 pages. A Look at the Four Major Ethical Theories and Their Differences in Orientations. words. 1 page. The Adaption of the Philosophy of Ethics. words. 2 pages. Essay on Virtue Ethics - Virtue Ethics Virtue ethics is a theory used to make moral decisions. It does not rely on religion, society or culture; it only depends on the individuals themselves. The main philosopher of Virtue Ethics is Aristotle. His theory was originally introduced in ancient Greek times.
- In this essay I will consider the objections to Virtue Ethics (VE) raised by Robert Louden in his article entitled On Some Vices of Virtue Ethics which was published in It is important to note at the . Introduction Virtue Ethics started in the years of Socrates and Plato’s era wherein they explained and argued that knowledge consists of both good and evil. They also stated that there is an inert quality in every man, the desire to be good and to perform kindness to others.