Philosophy 2200C Taylor Pearl Paper #1 The Cultural Differences Argument for Moral Relativism In this paper I will be discussing the theory of the Cultural Differences Argument for Moral Relativism and also the flaws this theory holds. First I will explain the general idea of Moral Relativism, followed by two examples of cultural differences that are often cited to further explain this theory. After that I will discuss what the Cultural Differences Argument is for Moral Relativism. Next I will describe the logical flaw with the theory of CDA, followed by one example that, with using the same logic that CDA uses, will show this theory as misleading. Finally I will make clear if the logical defect of CDA proves if the theory is false or not. The General idea of Moral Relativism is that the beliefs and/or activities of an individual, society, etc. are to be understood. As written in James Rachels book Elements of Moral Philosophy, he states, “Different societies have different moral codes”(p. 18) and that “if the moral code of a society says that a certain action is right, then that action is right, at least within that society.”(p.19) This shows that in the study of ethics, the study of moral relativism to be more specific, the idea of universal truth does not exist. That is to say what is perceived as “good” or “right” can vary form culture to culture, so there is no way to have one universal truth. Two major examples of cultural differences that are often cited in Support
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The final chapter, chapter 21, of Russ Shafer-Landau’s book, The Fundamentals of Ethics, emphasis is placed on the fact that moral objectivity is not always completely universal but does not mean the idea of moral objectivism has to be rejected. Moral objectivism states that moral standards should be universal but there are some circumstances and exceptions to this claim. Shafer-Landau presents eleven arguments in chapter 21 that some consider challenges to the universality principle of moral objectivity. Not only will moral objectivism be examined in this paper but also another philosophical view known as moral skepticism will be discussed. In addition to the arguments present by Shafter-Landau’s book this paper will include an analysis from
According to Ethical Relativism, there are no universal truths, which apply to all human beings at all times, and proposes that moral principles should be viewed as "local, conventional, subjective and self-justified" (Yardley, 2012). While ethical principles should conform to social, cultural norms and moral beliefs and practices are frequently products of cultural upbringing, the basis for Ethical Relativism is fundamentally unsound because it can be used to justify and rationalize practices and behaviors that are inherently immoral, such as racism, discrimination, hate crimes and oppression. Ethical African
This paper will attempt to summarize and explain the essay How to Argue about Disagreement: Evaluative Diversity and Moral Realism by John M. Doris and Alexandra Plakias. They claim that moral realism has a problem with its assertion that all disagreement is superficial, and would not persist under ideal conditions. They cite an experiment by Nisbett and Cohen in 1996 where there seems to be a fundamental disagreement between northern and southern white American men surrounding acceptable violence. Moral realism is the philosophical idea that morality is based in objective fact.
Our moral beliefs indicate the kind of environment or culture we grew up in. Therefore, if we were born in Somalia, we would believe that it is morally right to go through female circumcision as a rite of passage. However, if we grew up in the western world, then we would not believe in female circumcision. We can therefore see the relativist 's argument of cultural relativism in this case, because if cultural relativism exists, then naturally, morality will also be relative. Additionally, to support his stance, the relativist will also argue that tolerance comes into play when it comes to cultural relativism.
In this prompt the argument that Morality exists is irrelevant, contrary to our thoughts and beliefs. Everyone follows a set of moral rules. Ethical relativists disagree with this belief because, they believe that morals are distinctive from each individual culture. These relativists as described are mixing up moral and cultural distinctions, or are simply not willing to completely understanding the cultures they are standing up for. There are two different types of relativism Ethical, and Cultural, that rely upon the argument of cultural differences, which have flaws that make the argument unsound.
Moral truth is relative to certain cultures. The author uses an example of polygamy, and how the statement “polygamy is wrong” is true for western cultures, but it may be false for others. There is not a deciding factor or an independent being that can decide whether polygamy is right or wrong, and it would be arrogant to impose our own particular moral point of view about polygamy to these other cultures (Law 50). Another form of relativism is conceptive. Conceptual relativism is how different people perceive something, and how their truths may differ from one another, but can still be right based on their perspective.
Thesis Statement: Origin of Morality Outline A.Universal Ethics 1.Karl Barth, The Command of God 2.Thomas Aquinas, The Natural Law 3.Thomas Hobbes, Natural Law and Natural Right 4.Immanuel Kant, The Categorical Imperative B.Morality and Practical Reason 1.Practical Reason a.Practical Reason and Practical Reasons C.Evolution of Morality 1.What makes Moral Creatures Moral 2.Explaining the Nature of Moral Judgments F. Answering Questions 1. What is the origin of Morality: Religion or Philosophy? 2. What does religion say about morality?
Cultural relativism is the understanding of other cultures in their own terms. To achieve the understanding of the rituals used in the cultures of another, one must be able to look at them from an emic (insider) perspective. One must also be able to look at his own culture from an etic (outsider) perspective. The ability to look at one’s culture from the etic point of view will make it easier to explain the rituals to someone from a different culture, for example, rites of passage. Rites of passage are used to mark a life stage and are celebrated by tradition or religion, meant to separate a specific group.
Relativism Despite the fact that ethical relativism did not turn into a conspicuous subject in rationality or somewhere else until the twentieth century, it has antiquated starting points. In the traditional Greek world, both the student of history Herodotus and the critic Protagoras seemed to underwrite some type of relativism (the recent pulled in the consideration of Plato in the Theaetetus). It ought to likewise be noticed that the antiquated Chinese Daoist scholar Zhuangzi (now and then spelled Chuang-Tzu) set forward a nonobjectivist see that is here and there deciphered as a sort of relativism.
Moral relativism comes into play in this debate because it is society that sets the standard as to what is acceptable or not, and morals and norms change over time. If society deems something that was thought of as immoral to be acceptable, and creates legislation protecting individuals within that specific category, or creates legislation that protect them within the human rights codes -- people who fight against those, or even voice their stand, face legal ramifications, based on discrimination. That is why I believe that rights should have limits, in that special interests groups rights shouldn't supersede other people's rights. My position towards homosexual unions is largely related to what the Bible says-- so my religious beliefs.
Therefore, different cultures with result in different moral codes. In that case, people should see matters from many aspects instead of having a general truth as the standard. A second reason why cultural relativism has a more logical way of reasoning is because it teaches us to keep in an open mind. This can be seen from the fact that people should respect and tolerate other’s culture since there is no universal truth that holds for all people. Taken together, these two arguments demonstrate the logical way reasoning of cultural relativism and highlight the advantage of the cultural relativism
In other words, “right” or “wrong” are culture specific, what is considered moral in one society may be considered immoral in another, and, since no universal standard of morality that exist, no one has the right to judge another societies custom (Ess, 2009). Cultural Relativism is closely related to ethical relativism, which views truth as variable and not absolute. What makes up right and wrong is determined solely by individual or the society (Ess, 2009). Since the truth is not object, there can be no standards which applies to all cultures.
The Strength and Vulnerability of Different Moral Views Over centuries of fervent discussion in the moral world, there is still nothing like a consensus on a set of moral views. This essay attempts to outline and critically evaluate two moral views, namely ethical objectivism and cultural relativism. It is crucial to understand that both moral theories cannot be true at the same time as it results in contradictions, contributing to false beliefs. Additionally, it is essential that we discuss these issues with an open-mind so as to gain deeper insights from them. First and foremost, we will be looking at the prominent view of ethical objectivism.