Ethics and the Good Life Spring 2019
(Ethics and the Good Life Spring 2019)

Most people believe they know what it means to live an ethical life. But few people are able to explain clearly, either to themselves or to others, why they believe what they do or how they handle morally challenging situations. In this course we will begin by raising the question of what it means to live a “good” life. We will then move on to consider some of the most influential approaches to moral life in the western philosophical tradition. Specifically, we will consider several ethical theories organized around fundamental ideas such as virtue, law, duty, utility and loyalty. As we explore these theories, we will also be sure to make them earn their keep. Together as a class we will decide which contemporary moral issues are the most pressing for us and we will put our theories to the test to see what help they can provide in generating solutions for us. An overarching goal of our course will be to help you to improve your ability to think, read, write and speak in an ethically and philosophically critical and precise fashion. Let’s get going!