Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts
Wheaton College


Philosophy 311. The Nature of Morality

The philosophical study of ethics comprises three subdivisions: normative ethics, applied ethics, and metaethics or the nature of morality. In this class we will study metaethics. We will not consider such normative ethical questions as — is act A morally right or is agent G morally good? Instead we will consider answers to the following questions: What do we mean when we judge “act A is good”? Do moral properties exist in the world in the same way physical properties do? Do objective moral facts exist? How are such facts related to culture? What counts as a moral explanation? What is the nature of moral disagreement? What does it mean to have a moral reason to act? (Previously Ethical Theory)