Ethics and Morals crime and punishment

Topics: Character, Morality, Evil Pages: 2 (614 words) Published: December 4, 2014

October 7, 2013
Ethnic & Morals
Crime and Punishment

Crime and Punishment

In Dostoyevsky’s novel Crime and Punishment the main character plots and carries out the murder of an old woman who has a considerable amount of money in her apartment. After killing the old women, he steals her money and argues that she was a malicious women; useless to society and herself. He goes on to state that the old women’s life causes no happiness to her or to others. For the old women’s money; the main character argues that if found after her death, the money would only fall into the hands of chisellers anyway, whereas he would use it to pay for his education. In terms of main stream society, Dostoyevsky’s main characters’ action more likely than not wouldn’t be proven ethically justifiable, but according to the moral standard of Utilitarianism the reason behind the main characters plot can be justifiable whereas the concept of Wickedness purposed by Stanley Ben clearly states the main character actions where evil and unethical. In Stanley Benn's concept on wickedness, he explains that wickedness can be broken down into four types, one of which is selfishness. He explains that a " merely selfish person pursues his or her own good, disregarding the rights and good of others" ( The moral Life). Using this concept, the main character's actions in Dostoyevsky's novel can not be ethically justified. The murder of the old women alone is considered a wicked act. His actions prove to be a selfish form of Wickedness when the main purpose behind the murder seems only to be to obtain her money and pay his way through college. He agures that the old women is malicious and useless to herself and society, yet, by murdering her you are disregarding her rights and though perhaps the old women may have been considered malicious, comminting an evil act against another person, regardless of who and what they've done is wicked and there for not ethically justifiable. The leading...
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