Ethics (PHIL*2120) | College of Arts

Ethics (PHIL*2120)

Code and section: PHIL*2120*01

Term: Winter 2019

Instructor: John Hacker-Wright


Philosophical ethics is the attempt to systematize, explain, and justify the standards by which we evaluate our conduct as persons.  The course may include treatment of controversial ethical issues such as abortion, euthanasia, war and the treatment of animals and will cover many of the following questions: can we expect to find a single, universal code of ethics that applies to all human beings, or do such codes vary for each society or even for each individual?  What are the roles of reason and emotion in ethics?  Is morality grounded on a principle, and if so, what is it?  Are there any traits of character that one must have to be a good person?  Given that traditional ethical codes have been almost universally sexist, how must ethics be refashioned in order for women to achieve equal recognition?


Course Outline

The University of Guelph resides on the land of the Between the Lakes Treaty No. 3, the territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit. This land is part of the Dish with One Spoon, a covenant between Indigenous nations to live peaceably on the territories of the Great Lakes region. We recognize that today this gathering place is home to many First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples and acknowledging them reminds us of our collective responsibility to the land where we learn, live and work.