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Module 7 Discussion Questions

Eric Rovie posted Mar 4, 2018 12:04 PMThis thread is pinnedSubscribePrevious Next This page automatically marks posts as read as you scroll.Adjust automatic marking as read setting

Last week’s module focused on the ancient Greek ideas behind an ethics of VIRTUE or CHARACTER. As we saw, and debated on the boards, the Greeks believed that living a good LIFE required more than just doing good ACTIONS, it required have a consistent and good character.  I posed a question about role models last week for you to consider and we had a nice discussion about that.

This week, we move to the ethics of care, an offspring of feminist ethics, that asks us to look at ethics from the perspective of relationships.  It is a theory that doesn’t require a set of rules (as utilitarianism or Kant might) but instead asks us to look at how relationships impact moral choices.  It is similar to, but not the same as, virtue ethics.

Here are some ideas that can start this week’s discussion.

A reminder: you’re supposed to post your own response to one of my questions AND respond thoughtfully to TWO of your classmates replies each week.

Questions:

1. This approach to ethics was once called “feminist ethics” but the name has changed.  Why do you think calling it an ‘ethics of care’ is better or more effective than calling it ‘feminist ethics’?

2. This approach to ethics is noted for having NO PRINCIPLES.  There is no one central, unbreakable rule to ethics of care like there is in utilitarianism or in Kant’s theory.  Is the lack of a central rule/set of rules a GOOD or a BAD thing, in terms of an ethical theory?

3. Ethics of care approaches the resolution of conflicts in a different way than a utilitarian or even a set of legal rules might do it.  Consider the case of a very contested divorce custody battle: how might an ethics of care tell us to resolve this, and compare that to how our legal system might currently do it.

3. Ethics of care approaches the resolution of conflicts in a different way than a utilitarian or even a set of legal rules might do it.  Consider the case of a very contested divorce custody battle: how might an ethics of care tell us to resolve this, and compare that to how our legal system might currently do