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Contemporary Moral Issues


Admission requirements

Good English will be required.


In this course we will discuss a number of issues in contemporary applied ethics, such as torture, abortion, euthanasia, and poverty. We will look at the ongoing debates surrounding these problems and the positions being held on either side. This will involve an analysis of the ways these issues are approached by the main ethical theories; consequentialism, deontology, and character ethics. In doing so we will compare the justifications for the answers each approach gives, discuss the presuppositions that each theory has and what they are committed to. Students will learn which theories underlie some of the main responses to these issues, and what commitments these responses entail for their proponents.

Course objectives

Course objectives will be posted on Blackboard by the start of the course.


See Rooster BA Wijsbegeerte 2010-2011

Mode of instruction


Assessment method

Essay, and oral presentation.



Required reading

A reader of course materials will be made available on Blackboard by the start of the course.


Please register for this course on U-twist. See registration procedure

Contact information

T.E. Bates, MA:


Specialisation: Ethics and Political Philosophy