West Valley College Jeremy Bentham Theory of Utilitarianism Research Paper

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West Valley College


Each student will write a paper on a western political theorist of the student's choice that is in the text book but not covered in class (upon discussion with and approval of the professor theorists not in the book may be chosen). The paper will evaluate the selected theorist's influence on the present (last 75 years), biographical information about the theorist will be limited to less than a page. The paper will focus on the theory not the person.and focus on his views on utilitarianism.


Outside research is required for this paper a minimum of two outside sources are required not including the text book. Dictionaries and encyclopedias are good starting places but are not considered academically acceptable sources. Students should always avoid online encyclopedias like Wikipedia. Wikipedia contains many errors and is NOT a reliable source. Generally internet sources are not acceptable for this research. The rule I use for this paper is the source must actually be in print. You do not have to have the printed copy but you must be able to cite it as if you did have the printed copy.

Each paper MUST be a minimum of 2500 words. The research paper must be typed double spaced, with one inch margins, a 12 cpi Times New Roman font, using proper in-text citations, including page numbers, a title page and references page.

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Explanation & Answer



Jeremy Bentham
Students Name
Institutional Affiliation



Bentham was born in the year 1748, on 15 February in England London, the Kingdom of
Great Britain. Later he died on 6th 1832, June with 84 years in England, United Kingdom. He
pursued his education in the Queen's Oxford College. He did BA in 1763, and MA in 1966. He
lived during the 18th and 19th era. He focused on the school of legal positivism, liberalism, and
Epicureanism and still Utilitarianism. He had interests majorly in philosophical politics, the law of
philosophy, economics and ethics with noble ideas of greatest happiness principle, and radical
consequentialism. Some of the other theorists he influenced include Epicurus, John Locke, Adam
Smith, David Hume, and Protagoras. Jeremy Bentham was also influenced by John Stuart Mill,
Thomas Hodgskin, Robert Owen, John Austin, and Peter Singer (Jeremy, 2018).
Jeremy is recognized to be the pioneer of Utilitarianism, which is a theory seeking for the greatest
happiness of the significant members. Jeremy was an activist who argues that slavery should be
abolished and also advocated for animal rights. In his works, he wrote many treatizes fighting for
equality among the sex, legislative reforms, terminating punishment for corporal, and ending the
punishment of death. He also acted a crucial role of influencing in English liberalism and
Radicalism of the 19th century. Jeremy Bentham was also regarded as the ‘Spiritual Father’ due to
his help in enhancing education to all members of entire classes and denomination in University
College London.
Jeremy Bentham was born of a Tory family, which was very wealthy on 15 February 1748
in Houndsditch, London. In his early life, he showed a recognizable academic precociousness.
When he was aged three, he started learning Latin, and he was a good history, classics, and
literature reader. After finishing his BA in 1763 and MA in 1766, he pursued education as a lawyer,



but he never worked as a lawyer (Bentham, 2018). Bentham was dismayed by the English legal
system, which was very complicated, and hence he turned to be a criticizer for the legal English
system. His father was disappointed by Jeremy's decision not to practice law because he hoped his
son would once be Lord of Chancellor of England. Despite the disappointment, he provided
financial support to Jeremy, and this made Jeremy take his time mostly writing. Jeremy was also
concerned about the English system of prison and the type of punishment. He hoped to reform law
making it possible for him to make a prison model known as panopticon. He knew that such kind
of model would assist inefficiency in handling the prisoners. Jeremy was pioneering applying his
utilitarianism principles for the evaluation of criminal law. He experienced that punishment and
regulations should be analyzed for if they ensure happiness to humans (Bentham, 2017). Jeremy
was afraid that corporal penalty was self-defending and never reformed prisoners. Therefore,
Bentham grew to be an advocator of terminating corporal sentences. This paper entails discussing
Jeremy's views on utilitarianism theory.
Literature review
Jeremy was recognized as the most outstanding Anglo-American theorist of law and also
radical political whose main ideas positively impacted the welfare of humans. He focused on
advocating for liberation, the distinction of denomination and state, and equal rights for women.
Bentham was also renowned for his contribution to advocating for the abolition of the s...

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