Thought Experiments in Ethics


Fed up with diverting trolleys, pushing fat men off bridges or killing one hostage to save twenty? Not sure whether you are prepared to be medically hooked up to a famous violinist for nine months, or whether that pig really does want to be eaten?

Thought experiments have become a common feature of ethical arguments, but how should we treat them and what are their limitations?

richardbaronphotoThe London-based philosopher, Richard Baron, has kindly allowed me to post the notes of his recent talk about Thought Experiments on my website, to which I have added my earlier rant about going ‘Off your trolley?’ and links to some books of Thought Experiments, including, of course, Julian Baggini’s popular consideration of ‘The Pig that Wants to be Eaten’.

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