Chapter

RULE-UTILITARIANISM

David Lyons

in Forms and Limits of Utilitarianism

Published in print November 1965 | ISBN: 9780198241973
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191724817 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198241973.003.0004
RULE-UTILITARIANISM

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This chapter is about moral rules. Most proponents of utilitarian generalization have viewed such a principle as the ground of moral rules or else have been concerned to account for the strength of certain purported obligations that cannot be accounted for by Act-Utilitarianism. These obligations may be expressed in general judgements about the rightness or wrongness of acts, judgements that can be justified by appeal to utilitarian generalization and which can plausibly be construed as moral rules. The discussion shows how such judgements can be generated. Connected with this topic is the relation of utilitarian generalization to rule-utilitarianism. The discussion considers two main types of rule-utilitarianism: primitive and ‘ideal’.

Keywords: utility; primitive rule-utilitarianism; moral rules; utilitarian generalization; Act-Utilitarianism

Chapter.  15838 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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