Qualitatively-Hedonistic Utilitarianism

Dissertation, The University of Iowa (1987)
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Abstract

Qualitatively-Hedonistic Utilitarianism is the ethical theory espoused by John Stuart Mill in Utilitarianism, first published in 1861. According to this theory, actions are right or wrong on account of their effects and the production of pleasure is the property of an action's effects that counts towards its being right or wrong. The qualitative aspect of the theory is that it allows for different classes of pleasure and that the enjoyment of the highest class of pleasure is held as being necessary for a truly happy life. ;An interpretation of Mill's ethical theory is given, but most of the text is devoted to discussion, analysis, and solution of problems that have arisen in the theory since the initial publication of Utilitarianism. Topics discussed include Consequentialism, the Desire Theory of Pleasure, the alleged inconsistency of Qualitative Hedonism, the practical implications of Quantitative Hedonism, and the relation of Qualitatively-Hedonistic Utilitarianism to Libertarianism

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