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The role(s) of rules in consequentialist ethics

Hooker, B. (2020) The role(s) of rules in consequentialist ethics. In: Portmore, D. (ed.) Oxford Handbook of Consequentialism. Oxford University Press, New York.

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After preliminaries concerning different accounts of the good and the distinction between actual-consequence consequentialism and expected-value consequentialism, this paper explains why consequentialists should prescribe a moral decision procedure dominated by rules. But act-consequentialists deny rules have a role in the criterion of moral rightness. Prescribing a decision procedure dominated by rules and then denying rules a role in the criterion of rightness can be problematic. Rule-consequentialism gives rules roles first in the decision procedure agents should use and second in the criterion of moral rightness. But giving rules this second role has attracted objections, some of which are outlined and answered here. The final section of the paper considers some recent developments.

Item Type:Book or Report Section
Divisions:Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Humanities > Philosophy
ID Code:89644
Publisher:Oxford University Press


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