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Unit Exam

By | Feb. 2013
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Why should one study philosophy?

One should study philosophy for many reasons; to learn how to be logical , to ask "why?", to spark conversation, to remain objective, to be open minded, etc. When you're after universal knowledge you get there by actively searching for it.

What are the branches of philosophy and what do they cover?

The main branches of philosophy are Metaphysics, Epistemology, and Axiology. Metaphysics deals with explaining the way things are in the physical world. Epistemology is concerned with the scope of knowledge and what it is, how it's attained, etc. Axiology is the study of how people determine the value of things. What is axiology and what questions does it concern?

The three main divisions of axiology are ethics, political theory, and aesthetics and the deal with value judgments. What is ethics and what are the three main ethical theories?

Ethics deals with morality; the distinguishing factors between what's right and what's wrong. The three main ethical theories are Consequentialism, Deontology, and Virtue Ethics. Who are the main proponents of each ethical theory?

John Stuart Mill offered the best explanation for Consequentialism and his version is known as Utilitarianism. Utilitarianism holds that an action is morally justified to the extent that it maximizes benefits and minimizes harms or costs. Kant, an 18th Century German philosopher, favored Deontology and argued that the consequences of an action are irrelevant to a moral evaluation of that action. Instead, it is the motivation behind an action that matters. Actions that are moral are those that are undertaken out of a sense of duty, which means you do it because you know that it is "the right thing to do." The most famous proponent of Virtue Ethics was Aristotle, the ancient Greek philosopher. Aristotle stated that a morally virtuous person is one who constantly and habitually acts the way a human being should. Why is political theory considered a...

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