Ariadne's Thread on Ethical Relativism
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Ayesha
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Implications

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Professor Sidgwick Speaking
Good morning! I'm glad everyone could make it back for this session. I think this will be very interesting. Very interesting.

Let's review for just a moment. We spent our first session talking about what ethical relativism is and listing some of the crucial questions associated with it. Among other things, we concluded that ethical relativism is a meta-ethical view claiming that when ethical judgments conflict it is not always the case that only one of the conflicting judgments is true. Relativists also believe that moral principles are not "objective," meaning that they are not entirely independent of human choices and attitudes.

Today's session is on the implications of ethical relativism. It may be here that we confront the most serious concerns that many people - especially those who are not professional philosophers - have about relativism.

No matter what you personally believe, for today's discussion, I want everyone to make the assumption that some form of ethical relativism is a true theory of ethics. We'll take that as our starting point.

I have asked Ann and Ayesha to talk with all of you and with people in their departments and make a list of the implications - both good and bad - sometimes drawn from ethical relativism.

Ayesha, would you tell us what's on your list.


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