Access over 20 million homework & study documents

Utilitarianism Theory Essay

Content type
User Generated
Subject
Psychology
Type
Essay
Rating
Showing Page:
1/5
Surname 1
Student’s Name
Professor’s Name
Course
Date
Utilitarianism
Ethics are the specific codes of behavior that dictate how people should relate with each
other in a society. (Maskin 93-96) They are the morals and principles that people abide to create
a harmonious society. A world without ethics would be filled with chaos due to the fact that there
is no distinction from good or bad. Although it might be argued that the difference between good
behavior and bad behavior lies in the eyes of the beholder, there are basic principles that most
people agree should be followed. (Maskin 93-96) Utilitarianism is a theory in the philosophy of
ethics that argues that in order for an act to be deemed good or bad, it is all dependent on the
effect it has on the majority people. (Blackorby 543-596) This theory basically argues that the
best choice made is that that has a positive impact not on a single person but the majority people.
A good illustration of utilitarianism is a case of a driver on a road. Take for instance a
truck’s brakes malfunction and the driver is destined to crash on either two sides. On one side of
the road, is a school bus that has a number of kids on board and on the other side of the road is
only one single pedestrian. In such a situation the theory of utilitarianism suggests that the driver
is supposed to head for the side of the road with only one pedestrian in the vicinity. This action
will definitely end the life of the passenger and the driver but it will save the lives of many kids
on the bus. Another example from a business perspective is from the setting of a workplace. All
the workers in the job place need a particular job for their survival. In the case that one of them

Sign up to view the full document!

lock_open Sign Up
Showing Page:
2/5
Surname 2
tries to jeopardize the whole organization then a decision needs to be made. It’s either the single
worker gets laid off the job or they are spared and at one point all the workers go home due to
the fall of the organization. Utilitarianism dictates that the moral thing to do is to lay off the one
worker and save the lives of the many workers. This ethical theory does hold some sense in it
and it has been in existence for quite some time now.
The types of utilitarianism that are commonly known are two in number, act
utilitarianism and rule utilitarianism. (Maskin 93-96) Act utilitarianism involves considering the
positive outcome on a large number of people your decision has. It is concerned with making
significant choices that in some cases requires a sacrifice of the minority. (Maskin 93-96) In the
case of rule utilitarianism, the argument is the same only in this case the choices or decisions
made act as potential rules that can be put in place for instance in organizations or society. The
rules that are derived from rule utilitarianism normally consider the happens of the majority.
("Utilitarianism - Ethics Unwrapped") A good example is that in a country, murder is considered
as an illegal act that is punishable by the law. However, an exception of self-defense can be
made and be termed as self-defense giving people the power to justify harm on others as
acceptable. When it comes to utilitarianism there are a number of advantages that are
accompanied by it.
The fact that the theory is mostly concerned with the happiness and the well being of
many makes it seem morally upright. (Blackorby 543-596) The ethical theory cannot in any way
be associated with self-centeredness. Selfishness is an act that society considers immoral and
most people tend to preach against it. Sacrifice on the other hand is an act that is highly praised
and goes to the extent of being regarded as heroic. Utilitarianism involves great deals of
sacrifices and in a way condemns acts of selfishness in a society. By practicing this theory, more

Sign up to view the full document!

lock_open Sign Up
Showing Page:
3/5

Sign up to view the full document!

lock_open Sign Up
End of Preview - Want to read all 5 pages?
Access Now
Unformatted Attachment Preview
Surname 1 Student’s Name Professor’s Name Course Date Utilitarianism Ethics are the specific codes of behavior that dictate how people should relate with each other in a society. (Maskin 93-96) They are the morals and principles that people abide to create a harmonious society. A world without ethics would be filled with chaos due to the fact that there is no distinction from good or bad. Although it might be argued that the difference between good behavior and bad behavior lies in the eyes of the beholder, there are basic principles that most people agree should be followed. (Maskin 93-96) Utilitarianism is a theory in the philosophy of ethics that argues that in order for an act to be deemed good or bad, it is all dependent on the effect it has on the majority people. (Blackorby 543-596) This theory basically argues that the best choice made is that that has a positive impact not on a single person but the majority people. A good illustration of utilitarianism is a case of a driver on a road. Take for instance a truck’s brakes malfunction and the driver is destined to crash on either two sides. On one side of the road, is a school bus that has a number of kids on board and on the other side of the road is only one single pedestrian. In such a situation the theory of utilitarianism suggests that the driver is supposed to head for the side of the road with only one pedestrian in the vicinity. This action will definitely end the life of the passenger and the driver but i ...
Purchase document to see full attachment
User generated content is uploaded by users for the purposes of learning and should be used following Studypool's honor code & terms of service.

Anonymous
Nice! Really impressed with the quality.

Studypool
4.7
Trustpilot
4.5
Sitejabber
4.4

Similar Documents