The Dimensions of Consequentialism

The Dimensions of Consequentialism : Ethics, Equality and Risk

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Consequentialism, one of the major theories of normative ethics, maintains that the moral rightness of an act is determined solely by the act's consequences. The traditional form of consequentialism is one-dimensional, in that the rightness of an act is a function of a single moral aspect, such as the sum total of wellbeing it produces. In this book Martin Peterson introduces a new type of consequentialist theory: multidimensional consequentialism. According to this theory, an act's moral rightness depends on several separate dimensions, including individual wellbeing, equality and risk. Peterson's novel approach shows that moral views about equality and risk that were previously thought to be mutually incompatible can be rendered compatible, and his precise theoretical discussion helps the reader to understand better the distinction between consequentialist and non-consequentialist theories. His book will interest a wide range of readers in ethics.
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Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • 2 b/w illus. 13 tables
  • 1139604384
  • 9781139604383

Table of contents

Preface; 1. Introduction; 2. Degrees of rightness; 3. First dimension: persons; 4. Second dimension: equality; 5. Third dimension: risk; 6. Multidimensional decision making; 7. The best one-dimensional theory; 8. The limits of consequentialism; Appendix: multidimensional deontic logic.
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Review quote

'... full of mathematical proofs and engages with related literature and selected intuitions ...' S. E. Forschler, Choice
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About Martin Peterson

Martin Peterson is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Eindhoven University of Technology, The Netherlands. He is author of Non-Bayesian Decision Theory (2008) and An Introduction to Decision Theory (Cambridge University Press, 2009).
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