Professor Gary Jason, PhD | Bulletins–PH 120–Introduction to Ethics–Fall 2019–MW 11:30am-12:45pm–Fullerton Campus

Bulletins–PH 120–Introduction to Ethics–Fall 2019–MW 11:30am-12:45pm–Fullerton Campus


1. Short paper #2 is due Wednesday, October 16th. PH 120 Short Paper #2: Bentham/Mill readings

Answer the following questions in 3-10 sentences each. DO NOT QUOTE, but only paraphrase in your own words. Do not copy the questions, just number and separate your answers. Keep your paper to about 2 pages, double-spaced. Print single-sided, please.

  • Read the Bentham reading in Johnson (pp. 208-217) and answer:
  1. What does Bentham mean by concept of “utility”?
  2. What does Bentham think of terms like “the Nation”, “the State”, “the People”, or “the Community”?
  3. What does Bentham mean by the “Principle of Utility” and by being “a partisan of the principle of utility” (i.e., a utilitarian)?
  4. Does Bentham believe we can prove the principle of utility? How does he justify it?
  5. What are the criteria for “valuing” (i.e., measuring the amount of) a pleasure or a pain? And what other circumstances must be taken into account to measure the pleasure of pain produced by an act.
  • Read the Mill reading in Johnson (pp. 218-244) and answer:
  1. In chapter II, how does Mill answer the charge that the doctrine that pleasure is is the only desirable thing is a doctrine that represents human nature in a degrading, swinish way?
  2. How does Mill say that we can tell if one type of pleasure is superior to another?
  3. What does Mill think a “life of happiness” would be like and what does he think holds most people back from attaining such a life?
  4. In chapter V, Mill distinguishes between the “origins” and the “binding force” of any moral sentiment, such as the desire for justice. What does he mean here?
  5. Bentham dismissed Locke’s doctrine of natural rights as “nonsense on stilts.” In his review of the types of action and social arrangements that the vast majority of people regard as just or unjust, in the first two Mill puts forward a more nuanced utilitarian view of rights. What is it, simply put?

2. Short paper #1 grades now posted.

3. For all exams, you will need a No. 2 pencil; a Scantron form 882-E; and a CLEAN eraser.

4. On all papers, the Turnitin class ID is 22212009; enrollment key = IntroEth.


  1. Syllabus;
  2. Rest of review questions set 2;
  3. Review questions set 3;