The Ethics Of Utilitarianism By Jeremy Bentham And John Stuart Mill

1521 Words Jul 11th, 2015 7 Pages
Utilitarianism is one of the persuasive approaches to ethics in the history of philosophy. It is widely used by everyone on a daily basis but has barely gotten recognition it deserves. Utilitarianism was founded in Ancient Greece but was not popularly used until the 19th century when it was re-introduced by Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill. While both men are credited as two of the most influential people in the foundation of, what we now consider, ethical theory. The approach in which we utilize the theory to make decisions is different from each other. In addition to discussing the two theorist’s views regarding utilitarianism, I will overview how the ethics of Utilitarianism was applied in the movie I am familiar with; Saving Private Ryan.

Utilitarianism is a philosophical theory of ethical reasoning that says the “end justifies the means”. Morality is applied to the decisions we make based on the impact it has and not necessarily on the action that was taken. Bentham believed that in using the utilitarian approach, any action was focused on getting the greatest good for the greatest number of people. In order to make decision-making more rational Bentham applied calculus to a decision-making model. In his model, he considers numerous key factors such as; intensity, duration, certainty, and nearness. Using this mathematical approach, he was able assigned every factor a negative or positive value. By implying the positive and negative values of the factors…

Related Documents