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Utilitarianism As level

Discussion in 'Religious Education' started by khan102, Feb 14, 2012.

  1. Hi

    I have been asked to teach a lesson on Bentham's act utilitarianism. I have managed to structure a lesson even though I don't know too much about this topic. I was wondering if anyone has taught this and could provide some tips? What I was looking for was for some good examples of scenarios, i.e. Euthanasia, Abortion cases etc. I also wanted to know if anyone has any ideas for an engaging plenary. So far, I have taught of giving each pair a scenario which they would then explain how they could act using one of the ethical theories.
  2. NoseyMatronType

    NoseyMatronType Star commenter

    The Cardinal Jones and Hayward book contains some perfect examples that would be ideal for your plenary session and bring out the strengths and weaknesses of Act Utilitarianism.
    Or you can make up your own. Here are a few suggestions;
    1. The example of women wishing to drive cars in unchaperoned in Saudi Arabia (which the Wahhabi majority are against).
    2. A serial killer is on the loose. The police have no idea who the killer is but a local mob are angry and demanding that the killer be brought to justice. They are on the verge of rioting and innocent people may be killed. To avert this, the police could frame a known criminal who is widely disliked and present in the mob for the murder. Should they do so?
    3. A nuclear bomb is about to be detonated in a large city. You have someone in custody who knows where the bomb is and there is still time to defuse it. The terrorist has stood up to torture and refused to reveal the location. Should you now torture the terrorist's 6 year old daughter to get her to reveal the information?
    You may also derive inspiration from this:
    Or this:

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