An analysis of the definitions of ethical relativism

But no set of social customs, Herodotus said, is really better or worse than any other.

An analysis of the definitions of ethical relativism

History and Major Authors a. Carol Gilligan While early strains of care ethics can be detected in the writings of feminist philosophers such as Mary Wollstonecraft, Catherine and Harriet Beecher, and Charlotte Perkins, it was first most explicitly articulated by Carol Gilligan and Nel Noddings in the early s.

While a graduate student at Harvard, Gilligan wrote her dissertation outlining a different path of moral development than the one described by Lawrence Kohlberg, her mentor. Kohlberg had posited that moral development progressively moves toward more universalized and principled thinking and had also found that girls, when later included in his studies, scored significantly lower than boys.

She found that both men and women articulated the voice of care at different times, but noted that the voice of care, without women, would nearly fall out of their studies. She characterized this difference as one of theme, however, rather than of gender.

Bulletin of the World Health Organization

Jake sees the Heinz dilemma as a math problem with people wherein the right to life trumps the right to property, such that all people would reasonably judge that Heinz ought to steal the drug.

Amy, on the other hand, disagrees that Heinz should steal the drug, lest he should go to prison and leave his wife in another predicament. She sees the dilemma as a narrative of relations over time, involving fractured relationships that must be mended through communication.

Understanding the world as populated with networks of relationships rather than people standing alone, Amy is confident that the druggist would be willing to work with Heinz once the situation was explained.

Gilligan posited that men and women often speak different languages that they think are the same, and she sought to correct the tendency to take the male perspective as the prototype for humanity in moral reasoning.

In ethics, the belief that nothing is objectively right or wrong and that the definition of right or wrong depends on the prevailing view of a particular individual, culture, or historical period. Ethical relativism, the doctrine that there are no absolute truths in ethics and that what is morally right or wrong varies from person to person or from society to society. Ethical relativism, then, is a radical doctrine that is contrary to what many thoughtful people commonly assume. As such, it. The term, "ethical subjectivism", covers two distinct theories in ethics. According to cognitive versions of ethical subjectivism, the truth of moral statements depends upon people's values, attitudes, feelings, or .

Later, Gilligan vigorously resisted readings of her work that posit care ethics as relating to gender more than theme, and even established the harmony of care and justice ethicsbut she never fully abandoned her thesis of an association between women and relational ethics.

Gilligan also expanded her ideas in a number of articles and reports Gilligan, ; ; ; Nel Noddings In Noddings published Caring, in which she developed the idea of care as a feminine ethic, and applied it to the practice of moral education.

Drawing conceptually from a maternal perspective, Noddings understood caring relationships to be basic to human existence and consciousness. Noddings located the origin of ethical action in two motives, the human affective response that is a natural caring sentiment, and the memory of being cared-for that gives rise to an ideal self.

Noddings rejected universal principles for prescribed action and judgment, arguing that care must always be contextually applied.

An analysis of the definitions of ethical relativism

The former stage refers to actual hands-on application of caring services, and the latter to a state of being whereby one nurtures caring ideas or intentions. She further argued that the scope of caring obligation is limited. The caring obligation is conceived of as moving outward in concentric circles so enlarged care is increasingly characterized by a diminished ability for particularity and contextual judgment, which prompted Noddings to speculate that it is impossible to care-for everyone.

She maintained that while the one-caring has an obligation to care-for proximate humans and animals to the extent that they are needy and able to respond to offerings of care, there is a lesser obligation to care for distant others if there is no hope that care will be completed.

These claims proved to be highly controversial, and Noddings later revised them somewhat.

Preliminaries

In her more recent book Starting From Home, Noddings endorsed a stronger obligation to care about distant humans, and affirms caring-about as an important motivational stage for inspiring local and global justice, but continued to hold that it is impossible to care-for all, especially distant others.

Other Influential authors Although many philosophers have developed care ethics, five authors are especially notable.Virtue ethics is currently one of three major approaches in normative ethics.

It may, initially, be identified as the one that emphasizes the virtues, or moral character, in contrast to the approach that emphasizes duties or rules (deontology) or that emphasizes the consequences of actions (consequentialism).

The Ethical Theory Of Utilitarianism - Zohra Javid Professor Taylor PHIL 31 October Second Reaction Paper o Consider the ethical theory of utilitarianism as discussed in chapters 7 and 8 of The Elements of Moral Philosophy.

definitions. Search. synonyms; ethical relativism. In ethics, the belief that nothing is objectively right or wrong and that the definition of right or wrong depends on the prevailing view of a particular individual, culture, or historical period. AET Internal Combustion Engine Theory and Servicing.

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Moral Relativism (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)