“The possession of knowledge carries an ethical responsibility” evaluate this claim 1-2
Knowledge can be a justified as a true belief, factual information or skills aquired, as stated by the Oxford dictionary: “facts, information, and skills acquired through experience or education; the theoretical or practical understanding of a subject”.1 It can also refer to the knowledge of human nature, perception and reason are ways of knowing which we use in our everyday life, making knowledge also the“awareness or familiarity gained by experience of a fact or situation”.2 Therefore what is actually knowledge? The word originates fom the old English verb gecnawan, cnāwan, which today translates to the word know and the auxiliary can.3 Consequently, the verb 'acknowledge' implies a state of aknowledgment and apprhension, together with an ability to act, which leads to the idea of a process. The latin cognosco (to conciously know) recalls the dinamic and construstive aspect of aknowledging something, an accumulation of information.4 Furthermore in 1200, knowledge was even refered to as information one confesses to possess, admitting and recognizing to have aquired knowledge. From the verb however implies a state of action which could both refer to the active apprhension of the knoweldge itself and at the same time, the power to act which is attributed to the knower.
The concept of responsibility instead refers to “the state or fact of having a duty, having control over someone or being accountable or to blame for something”.5 Deriving from the 1590s answerable (to another, for something) and the Latin responsus (to respond), the root word holds the sense of obligation which led to the meaning attested in 1836 of “morally accountable for one's actions”.6 Therefore, responsability is a condition of being responsible for something. Ethics instead are defined as:“the moral correctness of specified conduct”.7 Ethics, deriving from the Greek ēthikos which refers to costums, is described by Peter Singer as “the set of rules, principles, or ways of thinking that guide, or claim authority to guide, the actions of a particular group; and sometimes it stands for the systematic study of reasoning about how we ought to act”. 8Translated into the Latin root moralis, morality is therefore part of the root of the word, being ethics “the
Articolo http://webeconoscenza.blogspot.it/2008/05/etimologia-di-conoscenza.html Oxford
science of morality”.9 The concept of ethical responsability can be understood as one's duty of
acting morally correct. The philosopher Jonas Hans sustains the imperative concept: “act so that the effects of your action are compatible with the permanence of genuine human life.” 10
The first school of ethical responsibility considers the work of Aristotle which affirms that: “virtues 2-5
(such as justice, charity, and generosity) are dispositions to act in ways that benefit both the person possessing them and that person’s society”. The second, sustained by Kant, “makes the concept of duty central to morality”11: it is the duty of all human beings to respect other rational beings. Whilst
the third uliteranian school believes “the guding principle of conduct should be the greatest 2-10
happiness or benefit of the greatest number”.12 Therefore, to what extent does the possession of knowledge always carry an ethical responsibility? Can the posession of knowledge stand alone or is it dependent on an ethical responsability? Imperically I believe the statements do stand parallel
because the possession of knowledge attributes power to the knower who therefore should...
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