‘ If you’re going to study ethics seriously, you must be prepared to examine your views critically and be open to a range of ideas that may be quite different from your own’. R.Bowie Are you ready for the challenge of studying ethics??
Ethics : from Greek word ethikos, meaning ‘character’. Refers to customary way to behave in society
Morality : from Latin word moralis, concerned with which actions are right and which are wrong
Today terms are used interchangeably
WHAT IS PHILOSOPHY? WHAT makes an action come within the scope of morality? WHAT sorts of things is morality all about? WHAT makes an act enter the moral arena? WHAT criteria do we use in order to identify moral actions?
WHAT IS PHILOSOPHY? Are there situations when an action might be right and other situations when the same action might be wrong? Is one culture or religious view of morality as good as that of another culture or religion? Are there some actions which are ALWAYS right? Are there certain moral rules that exist for all times and for all places?
The nomadic Masai of East Africa practice polygamy and wife-lending between men of the same age group. Some Westerners practise open marriages, whereby spouses engage other spouses in shared and open sexual relations. Christians practice monogamy. Is any one way morally better or morally worse than another?