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Since it was first articulated in the late 19th Century by the likes of Jeremy Bentham and later John Stewart Mill, the classical approach to utilitarianism has since become the basis for many other consequentialist theories such as rule-utilitarianism and act-utilitarianism upon which this essay will focus (Driver,...
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The Classical Utilitarians, Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill,identified the good with pleasure, so, like Epicurus, were hedonistsabout value. They also held that we ought to maximize the good,that is, bring about ‘the greatest amount of good for thegreatest number’.
The paradigm case of consequentialism is utilitarianism, whoseclassic proponents were Jeremy Bentham (1789), John Stuart Mill (1861),and Henry Sidgwick (1907). (For predecessors, see Schneewind 1990.)Classic utilitarians held hedonistic act consequentialism. Actconsequentialism is the claim that an act is morally right if andonly if that act maximizes the good, that is, if and only if the totalamount of good for all minus the total amount of bad for all is greaterthan this net amount for any incompatible act available to the agent onthat occasion. (Cf. Moore 1912, chs. 1–2.) Hedonism thenclaims that pleasure is the only intrinsic good and that pain is theonly intrinsic bad.
Utilitarianism Quotes and Analysis | GradeSaver
One cannot properly appreciate the development of Mill's moral andpolitical philosophy without some understanding of his intellectualbackground. Mill was raised in the tradition of PhilosophicalRadicalism, made famous by Jeremy Bentham (1748–1832), JohnAustin (1790–1859), and his father James Mill (1773–1836),which applied utilitarian principles in a self-conscious and systematicway to issues of institutional design and social reform. Utilitarianismassesses actions and institutions in terms of their effects on humanhappiness and enjoins us to perform actions and design institutions sothat they promote—in one formulation, maximize—humanhappiness. Utilitarianism was a progressive doctrine historically,principally because of its universal scope—itsinsistence that everyone's happiness matters—and itsegalitarian conception of impartiality—its insistencethat everyone's happiness matters equally. Because of these generalcharacteristics of utilitarianism, the Radicals' application ofutilitarian principles to social institutions tended to challengetraditional institutions of class and privilege and support egalitarianreforms.
Utilitarianism and Environment – Vanya Rose Leisos
John Stuart Mill (1806–1873) was the most famous andinfluential British philosopher of the nineteenth century. He was oneof the last systematic philosophers, making significant contributionsin logic, metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, political philosophy, andsocial theory. He was also an important public figure, articulating theliberal platform, pressing for various liberal reforms, and serving inParliament. During Mill's lifetime, he was most widely admired for hiswork in theoretical philosophy and political economy. However, nowadaysMill's greatest philosophical influence is in moral and politicalphilosophy, especially his articulation and defense of utilitarianismand liberalism (Nicholson 1998). This entry will examine Mill'scontributions to the utilitarian and liberal traditions. We willconcentrate on his two most popular and best known works,Utilitarianism (1861, cited as U) and OnLiberty (1859, cited as OL), drawing on other texts whenthis sheds light on his utilitarian and liberal principles. We willconclude by looking at how Mill applies these principles to issues ofpolitical and sexual equality in Considerations on RepresentativeGovernment (1859, cited as CRG), Principles ofPolitical Economy (1848, cited as PPE), and TheSubjection of Women (1869, cited as SW).