Rowan University
Ellen Miller, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor

Department of Philosophy & Religion
Rowan University
Glassboro, NJ 08028
Office: 321 Bunce Hall

Office Phone:  856-256-4835
E-mail:  millere@rowan.edu

Dr. Ellen Miller
Home Page
Curriculum Vitae
Teaching
   Current Courses
Introduction to Philosophy    (Mon-Weds)
Introduction to Philosophy    (Tues.)
Introduction to Ethics
Philosophy and Gender

    Previous Courses

Contemporary  Moral Problems
Philosophy and Society
Logic of Everyday Reasoning
Aesthetics
Feminist Theory
Western        Humanities

Search:
Google
Hippias
Library of Congress
Noesis
Philosophy Library
Rowan University

Rowan Univ.
About The University
Academics
Library
Offices & Services
Philosophy Dept.


 

Position Paper #1

Introduction to Ethics

Length: Approximately 1200-1800 words,  4-6 pages. A word count should appear on the first page. It must be typed, double-spaced, with 12-point font. In a paper of this length, there is no room for "fluff"! Check with me if you have any questions.
A paper of this length should be entirely in your own words (that means avoid direct quotes unless they are absolutely necessary).

Please write on one of the following questions:

1.  Briefly describe the theory of cultural ethical relativism based upon your reading of Rachels and Sumner (and our class discussions). Evaluate one major problem a proponent of ethical relativism faces. (In other words, describe an objection to the theory and discuss any reasonable responses a proponent of the theory could make.)  Also, explain why Sumner thinks we can never say that any society’s code is morally superior to any other’s. Why does he think this? Do you agree? Why or why not? (Note, the major problem you pick should differ from this one just raised). In your paper, be sure to state your own position clearly. Your thesis statements should appear in the first paragraph of your paper. Your paper might include a case study of a contemporary moral problem (how the US should deal with other countries, the case of Fauziya Kassindja, or your own example) in order to highlight or emphasize your points.

2.  Explain Rachels’ claim that morality and religion are different. Does this mean he thinks religious viewpoints are false? Is his viewpoint one a religious believer could maintain? In your answer, examine a contemporary moral problem in order to show how Rachels would respond and then compare his stance to someone who holds either a divine command perspective or a natural law perspective. In your paper, be sure to state your own position clearly. Your thesis statements should appear in the first paragraph of your paper.

3.  Explain the arguments for and against Robert Latimer’s murder of his daughter Tracy Latimer. In your answer be sure to examine the benefits argument in detail (explain its connection to utilitarianism as outlined in the Right Thing to Do) and at least 2 arguments against Robert Latimer’s actions. This paper will require you to do some research about this case in order to better formulate your own position. In your paper, be sure to state your own position clearly. Your thesis statements should appear in the first paragraph of your paper.

 

 

 

 

 
 
Copyright 2001 Dr. Ellen Miller. All rights reserved. Document last modified