Timeline of Major Ethical Philosophies

Timeline created by cloudlscloud
In History
  • 469 BCE

    Ancient Greek Ethics: Socrates

    Ancient Greek Ethics: Socrates
    Socrates was an Athenian Philosopher whose questions and opinions clashed with the current course of Athenian politics and society. Socrates worked to critically examine the foundational beliefs that were common in Greece during his time. One of the greatest paradoxes that helped his students explore was whether weakness of will – doing wrong when you genuinely knew what was right – truly existed. According to Socrates, a person will commit only moral evil if he lacks moral knowledge.
  • 428 BCE

    Ancient Greek Ethics: Plato

    Ancient Greek Ethics: Plato
    Plato is ranked as one of the greatest philosophers in the world, and considered by scholars as the most important philosopher in Western civilization. Moral concepts, according to Plato, are universal in the sense that they reside outside of arbitrary human norms in a spirit-like world. He believed they are absolute, or infinite, in the sense that they never alter, and universal in the sense that they belong to all intelligent beings anywhere and at all times.
  • 384 BCE

    Ancient Greek Ethics: Aristotle

    Ancient Greek Ethics: Aristotle
    Aristotle was known as "The First Teacher". The ethics of Aristotle is concerned with action, not as being right in itself irrespective of any other consideration, but with actions conducive to man’s good. Aristotle’s “The Golden Mean Principle” states that to be happy, live a life of moderation. Living frugally. This principle can also be used in determining and planning for profit in business, for example, too much profit results to greed, no profit results to bankruptcy.
  • Thomas Hobbes

    Thomas Hobbes
    He believed that human beings are basically selfish creatures that will do anything to improve their position. According to Hobbes, people would act on their evil impulses if left alone for themselves; therefore, they should not be trusted to make decisions on their own. In addition, Hobbes felt that like people, nations are selfishly motivated. For him, each country is in a constant battle for power and wealth.
  • Jeremy Bentham

    Jeremy Bentham
    An English philosopher and social reformer regarded as the founder of utilitarianism. The term utilitarian comes from the Latin words utile bonum or utilis, which mean "usefulness". The rule “Do whatever provides the greater value for the greatest number” better explains utilitarian ethics. The hypothesis contends that it is the results of an action, not the intent, that determine whether or not it is right. The goodness or badness of an action is determined by its outcomes or