Postgraduate Module Descriptor

PHLM006: Contemporary Ethics

This module descriptor refers to the 2021/2 academic year.


NQF Level7
Credits30 ECTS Value15
Term(s) and duration

This module will run during term 2 (11 weeks)

Academic staff

Dr Christine Hauskeller (Convenor)





Available via distance learning


Developments in society, science and technology confront us as individuals and communities with complex challenges to which we must respond, because no response is a response, too, affecting our future and that of others. Post-metaphysical ethics is intrinsically connected to our self-understanding as humans. Scientific understandings of the human and normative ethical concepts influence each other. How we see ourselves and the society we live in affects what makes an ethical response. At the same time, ethical acts happen in often highly politicized or culturally regimented situations, which make it very difficult to decide what is right or wrong.

In this module we will discuss different contemporary ethical themes and literatures relating to understandings of human nature. Globalized Modernity is characterized by a pluralism of cultures and moral traditions that deserve ethical consideration. We will have a few anthropologists as guest lecturers who will inform and discuss with us their research into hospitality, women and culture, questions of life and death, ethics of virtue and ethics of care. Intersectional and postcolonial approaches will be discussed alongside more traditional ones.  

Knowledge of established philosophical moral theories will be helpful, though an undergraduate degree in philosophy is not conditional. 

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