PHIL 13: Introduction to Philosophy: Ethics [Spring 2014]
This course is an introduction to ethics. Here, we’ll discuss some of the most complicated, difficult, and important questions philosophers have ever thought about:
• How do we know what’s right and wrong? We’ll start with normative ethics, the subfield of ethics concerned with developing theories to explain right and wrong action: consequentialism, deontology, and virtue ethics/the ethics of care.
• What’s right or wrong in a specific situation? Next, we’ll look at applied ethics, the subfield of ethics that applies ethical theories to particular problems we face. We will look at three: oppression and privilege, abortion, and climate change.
• Do rightness and wrongness even exist? We’ll end the course with metaethics, the subfield of ethics that looks at the high-level questions of ethics: whether right and wrong exist and whether they’re the same for everyone.