Bentham said ‘the principle of utility aims to promote happiness which is the supreme ethical value.’ In determining how to measure different amounts of pleasure and deciding on the right and good thing to do Bentham came up with the Hedonistic Calculus. This was a calculus to weigh up pain and pleasure and a way of testing whether an action is morally right, one that results in the most pleasurable outcome. It is measured in a quantitative way. Looking at the quantity of happiness produced from the action. It consists of seven key elements which measure different aspects of happiness.
Summary of Utilitarianism Utilitarianism is a teleological theory as it looks at the consequences which also makes it a consequentialist theory. It focuses on the greatest good for the greatest number of people. Jeremy Bentham, one of the main ethicists that who believed in utilitarianism, believed that happiness is the greatest good. He defined happiness as pleasure minus pain. John Stuart Mill was a hedonist and accepted that happiness was of great importance and stressed that happiness is more important than pleasure.
For many years authors have brilliantly incorporated the theme of sorrow and disempowerment as a consequence of the actions of others. Authors depict the reality of others doubt in people, even their family members, through their brutal and trust lacking actions. Through the short stories “Boys and Girls” by Alice Munro, “Brother Dear” by Bernice Friensen and “A Cap for Steve” written by Morley Callaghan the aspirations and desires of the main characters are not accepted by their fathers and also rejected by a more powerful authority. Not only are the characters not accepted but also relatives are thought to be more advantageous than then the key characters and although one character does not have a sibling, money overpowered his importance. Lastly, the fathers expectations of two characters does not align with the mothers, yet in one piece of literature the mother expected exactly what the father wished.
He did not tell the people about his sin like Hester Prynne's was told. This sin made it unable for him to preach and bring a good change into people's lives because he was impure. People looked at him with great trust and saw him as a man of god but he betrayed that trust by giving into his feeling of lust for a short period of time. He is a impure minister of hidden dark secret which is against the rules of god, religion, society, and being a man of faith. The Scarlett Letter delivers a messege into our lives and teaches us an important rule in life.
Though Huck's guardians, Miss Watson and Widow Douglas constantly tried to "sivilize" Huck, he repells, therefore exposing his lack of maturity. This lack of maturity however, is shown mainly in the beginning of the novel. Kohlberg spent years researching how an individual develops their own moral codes. He believed that a person's moral judgment is motivated by a need to avoid punishment. Though Huck knows his relations with Jim will be shunned by society, he takes a huge chance and puts his reputation on the line.
Utilitarianism is consequentalist ethical theory. When an action is judged entirely on the utility. So an action would be determined on the outcome and the consequences. In utilitarianism the utility of an action is decided on how much pleasure and happiness is gained from it, so it is about maximising happiness as much as possible rather than gaining pain and sadness. The two most well known utilitarian’s are Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill.
Boys on the brink maturity all come to a destination where their desire for introspection outweighs their desire to hold on to childish characteristics. In Toni Morrison’s Song of Solomon, Milkman finds himself evaluating his life under the dark Virginia sky. In a moment of realization the young man becomes aware of how sheltered and over privileged he has been. His wealth has been nothing but a handicap holding him back from achieving the love of his peers. Milkman resents his privileged life as a child for it has kept him from understanding other people.
He was very unpopular, clinging close to Phineas, who was Gene’s only source of social interaction. When he was not with Phineas he would feel as if,” I would have lost face with Phineas, and that would have been unthinkable.”(Knowles Pg. 34) Gene did everything he could to stay in favor with Phineas, even by taking part in’ The Suicide Society’ (Knowles. 56-57), when he longed to be studying for examinations. Striving to be the best academically and to be so much like an adult, pressured Gene into thinking he had to be, ”serious sometime, about something.
“Sadness of Desire” Richard Rodriguez: The Achievement of Desire As I read Richard Rodriguez’s The Achievement of Desire a feeling of sadness overwhelmed me. Typical of what Richard Hoggart terms “scholarship boys”, Rodriguez felt he could not admire his parents and still pursue his desire to be like his teachers; educated and successful. Rodriguez’s desire to be like his teachers caused him to abandon his family. The thought of a human being alienating themselves from a loving, supportive family in pursuit of achieving a personal desire makes me sad. As a “scholarship boy” he allows himself to be embarrassed of where he came from and that his parents were not as educated as his teachers.
But like I said earlier, Levi was more ashamed over the fact that he was too focused on survival and realized that they lost his humanity along the way. I think Levi was being too hard on himself. Throughout the rest of the book, his humanity is present through his exchange with other prisoners, his ever-present knowledge, and his insight into others. Although this passage is glaringly honest, I do not think that he completely lost his humanity due to his will to survive. Levi admits that there were times when thought was impossible to ignore, like right before falling asleep.