Course Memo

This course is an introduction to the philosophical study of ethics, focusing on key ethical questions (e.g., how we are to live, what we are permitted or obligated to do, etc.) and concepts (virtue, happiness, duty, obligation, the good, and so forth).  Through a careful reading of great philosophical works in the western tradition, important ethical theories will be presented within their historical context, including utilitarianism or consequentialism, deontological ethics, virtue theory, social contract theory, emotivism, and natural law.  Class discussion will center on understanding and evaluating each of these ethical approaches, as well as their relevance to contemporary issues.  Class format:  lecture and discussion.  Student evaluation will be based on class participation, weekly study questions, two short written essays, and a final exam.  Intended audience:  M.A. and M.Div. students.[Auditors excluded]