Utilitarianism and Social and Moral Sensitivity
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This paper examines the problem of sensitivity (conceived as openness to social and moral problems) in utilitarianism as a theoretical issue as well as theme in philosophical and civic practice of John Stuart Mill. Both in his writings and practice, much of evidence for the presence of such a sensitivity may be found. On the theoretical level, however, some difficulties may be seen as regards relationships between sensibility and the principle of utility. Discussion of these issues leads to the conclusion that sensibility for moral and social problems, combined with capacity for 'nobler feelings' and susceptibility for different kind of pleasures, forms in Mill's utilitarianism a basic condition for morality and moral decision-making.
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