Moral Education and Rule Consequentialism

Philosophical Quarterly 71 (1):120-140 (2021)
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Abstract

Rule consequentialism holds that an action's moral standing depends on its relation to the moral code whose general adoption would have the best consequences. Heretofore rule consequentialists have understood the notion of a code's being generally adopted in terms of its being generally obeyed or, more commonly, its being generally accepted. I argue that these ways of understanding general adoption lead to unacceptable formulations of the theory. For instance, Brad Hooker, Michael Ridge, and Holly Smith have recently offered different answers to the question of what ‘acceptance rate’ we should build into our formulation of rule consequentialism, and all are unsatisfactory. I argue instead for a novel approach to formulating rule consequentialism, ‘uniform-moral-education’ rule consequentialism, on which what it means for a moral code to be generally adopted is not for it to be generally followed or generally accepted, but instead for it to be generally taught.

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Dale E. Miller
Old Dominion University

Citations of this work

Solving the Ideal Worlds Problem.Caleb Perl - 2021 - Ethics 132 (1):89-126.
Internalizing rules.Spencer Paulson - forthcoming - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
Act Consequentialism without Free Rides.Preston Greene & Benjamin A. Levinstein - 2020 - Philosophical Perspectives 34 (1):88-116.

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References found in this work

A theory of the good and the right.Richard B. Brandt - 1979 - Amherst, N.Y.: Prometheus Books.
A Theory of the Good and the Right.Richard B. Brandt - 1979 - Zeitschrift für Philosophische Forschung 35 (2):307-310.

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