Social and Political Philosophy (PHL 265)- F-Term 2022
Final Essay (1500 words-1750 Recommended)
Due Dec. 1st (Deadline at 11:59pm)
Write an essay that addresses the questions in either option 1 or 2 (please do not write on more than one option). Your paper should have an introduction, conclusion, and a clear thesis statement. All paraphrased passages and quoted material may be cited using the following format: (author, page number) or (PPT Presentation Name, slide number). Please submit your paper to the Quercus submission portal. There is no penalty for going over the word limit, but a lengthy essay is still required to be succinct (i.e., the discussion/argumentation should be expressed efficiently)—you are not expected to go over the recommended word length to write an excellent paper. No research outside of the assigned articles/course material is required or recommended (essays that primarily respond to outside sources, rather than course material, will be considered off topic). 80% of the evaluation of this midterm is based on accurately explaining course material; 20% of the evaluation is based on critical analysis (i.e., providing arguments or objections that were not explicitly considered in the course material). If you have an accessibility need that has not been addressed, please reach out to me as soon as possible (this includes the inability to complete the assignment on time due to a disability, illness, or a significant disruption to your studies).
1. A) Explain Morris’ retributivist theory of punishment and how it contrasts with the consequentialist justification of punishment (you may draw from various consequentialist notions, such as deterrence, rehabilitation, etc.) and the educational theory of punishment
B) What is Morris’ argument for the conclusion that we have a right to a system of punishment over a system of therapy?
C) Do you think Morris’ view is correct? Explain why/why not by providing an argument against his view or considering and responding to an objection against his view.
2. A) Explain the extent of our obligations to alleviate poverty according to Singer and how he arrives at this conclusion (i.e. what is each step of his argument for this conclusion?).
B) Is our obligation to alleviate poverty greater according to Nell/O’neil? Explain in detail how these views differ in terms of what they demand of us.
C) Do duties of partiality undermine the arguments given by Nell/Singer, or should partiality be rejected as a plausible feature of morality?