Unit Two Assignment Part Two

Assignment Requirements


Required Source: Ciulla, Joanne B. The Ethics of Leadership. (2003). Thompson-Wadsworth Publishers. ISBN-10: 0-15-506317-0, ISBN-13: 978-0155063174. Additional sources are optional. Details of assignment in attachment.

Part B Overview

In Part B of Unit Two you will study “utilitarianism,” a philosophical position that focuses on outcome as the basis of evaluating moral good. This is different from the focus on intention that you saw in Kant earlier. In this section, you will see how some things are done for the “greatest good” and, from the case studies, see many problems with outcome-based morality. You will also read Rawls, who believed that he could combine the best from Kant and Mill.

Part B Objectives

Upon completing Part B of this unit, students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of John Stuart Mill and his development of utilitarianism;
  • Demonstrate an understanding of how outcome-based morality can lead to many counter-intuitive moral situations;
  • Demonstrate an understanding of how outcome-based organizations may have problems with morality based upon good intentions;
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the influential theory of John Rawls, who tries to weld together the theories of Kant and Mill; and
  • Demonstrate the ability to work through various case studies that teach you to apply these concepts to your own life.

Part B Reading Assignments

  • “Chapter Four: Leadership for the Greatest Good” in the Ciulla text

Ciulla, Joanne B. The Ethics of Leadership. (2003). Thompson-Wadsworth Publishers. ISBN-10: 0-15-506317-0, ISBN-13: 978-0155063174.

Part B Guiding Questions

  • What does Mill mean by “utilitarianism?” Can you reduce it to three major points? What are they?
  • How does Rawls try to merge the theories of Kant and Mill? Does it work? Is what he describes the ideal form of Western democracy? Can you run a business on the basis of Rawls’ theory?
  • Where does Nietzsche think that morality comes from? Is he right? Why or why not?
  • What is the role of social organization and social good in the writings of Lao Tzu?

Required Work

Unit 2 – Part B

For each of the following thinkers, write four sentence-long bullet points that describe the thinkers’ main ideas.

  • Mill
  • Rawls
  • Nietzsche
  • Tzu

Then, choose one of the following case studies:

  • “Prejudice or Preference”
  • “Corneas in the Congo”
  • “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas”

Write a three to five page paper (900-1500 words) in which you examine the case from the perspective of each of the thinkers from this chapter.

  • Start the paper with a brief summary of the case (no more than 300 words).
  • The main portion of the paper will include the application of the various thinkers’ ideas to the facts of the case study.
  • Conclude the paper by describing which thinker (or two) best addresses the issues presented by the case study.


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