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Philosophy

INSTRUCTIONS:

This assignment consists of two short essay questions. The main intent of these questions is to ensure that you have a sound grasp of the fundamentals of the material presented in this unit. To that end, there is a 3 to 4 page (1000 words) limit for this question. I’m not so concerned with whether you agree with a particular author or not. The quality of your answer is based on your exposition of the competing positions, your comparative analysis of those positions and, lastly, your argument in support of the position you defend. As with all the assignments in this course, these questions are not designed to be a “research” questions. There is no requirement to get material from external sources such as websites like Wikipedia. In fact, doing so can count against you. The point of your essays is to formulate the course material and develop your critical response. You can do this by working with the course material and developing your own ideas about the issue. The essay is simply your opportunity to set that out in paper. So, the material you need to successfully complete this assignment can be found in the online course materials available through the course website. There may also be some reading material that is part of the hard copy course readings package. You can find this information on the course materials section of the course website. Questions: (The total possible mark for this assignment is 100 marks.) 1. In your own words, provide a concise formulation of Utilitarianism. In particular, explain the reasons Bentham and Mill give in support of it. In your own words, provide a concise formulation of Kant’s deontological ethics. In particular, explain the role of the Categorical Imperative in Kantian ethics. In light of the criticisms offered of both accounts, which account is more plausible? Explain why. (70 marks.) 2. Ethical Egoism maintains that one ought to act in accordance with one’s own self-interest. In your own words, provide Rand’s argument in support of Ethical Egoism. Explain Medlin’s response to Rand’s argument. Do you agree with Medlin’s response? Explain why or why not. (30 marks.)

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