Computers, Information Technology, the Internet, Ethics, Society and Human Values

Philip Pecorino, Ph.D.

Queensborough Community College,  CUNY

Chapter 3 Ethics

Overview

All humans need to make decisions concerning the right thing to do.  Most humans want to do what is good.  It is good to do the right thing.  Often knowing what is the right thing to do, knowing what is right, and knowing what is good is not all that easy.  Answers to the questions, "What is the right thing to do?" and "What is the good ?" aren't obvious to many or universally agreed upon.  yet, humans need answers to these questions.  This chapter or unit of the course is concerned with a matter of considerable importance: the GOOD.   Ethics is a branch of Philosophy which deals with the issue of the GOOD.  The question here is what is the GOOD?  What is meant by the GOOD?  The answer is needed so that humans will know how to live a GOOD life.  People need to know what the GOOD is in order to choose the GOOD.  Ethics deals with theories of the GOOD.  Ethical theories put forth principles of the GOOD.   

Related to the issue of the GOOD are matters that deal with morality and law and even etiquette.   This unit will touch on the questions to which each human must have some answer: Why be moral? What should be my moral code? 

At the conclusion of this unit each person should be in a better position to understand what is involved and to develop answers to those questions.

Here are the titles of the sections:

Case Presentation
Basis for Morality
Becoming Moral
Relativism
Ethical Theory
Egoism
Utility
Divine Command
Natural Law
Categorical Imperative
Rawls
Post Modern: Existentialism
Post Modern: Feminism
Post Modern: Virtue Theory
Relativism Revisited
Deciding:  Dialectic Process
Questions

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Web Surfer's Caveat: These are class notes, intended to comment on readings and amplify class discussion. They should be read as such. They are not intended for publication or general distribution. ppecorino@qcc.cuny.edu                @copyright 2006 Philip A. Pecorino                       

Last updated 8-2006                                                              Return to Table of Contents