Worldwide, many theories and their authors played a considerable role in the development of the world. The same refers to both Mill and his theory called utilitarianism.
II. Mill’s Biography and the Nature of Utilitarianism
In general, according to Duignan (2015), utilitarianism is “an effort to provide an answer to the practical question “What ought a person to do?”” and then the answer goes “that a person ought to act so as to produce the best consequences possible”. Thus, it seems worthwhile to proceed to a short biography of John Stewart Mills. Born in 1806 in London’s neighborhood, he was a man with a capital M. The future economist and philosopher was educated by his father. He seemed to be a competent logician and a well-trained economist at the age of twelve and sixteen respectively. Concerning his work Thomas Mautner from BLTC argues, “His Utilitarianism (1861) remains the classic defence of the view that we ought to aim at maximizing the welfare of all sentient creatures, and that welfare consists of their happiness”. At the same time, Professor Charles D. Kay noted, “The best known version of consequentialism is utilitarianism”. Mill described the theory’s basic principle as “actions are right to the degree that they tend to promote the greatest good for the greatest number”. This theory appears to be altruistic one (altruistic theories are always looking for such a phenomenon of welfare as extending benefits not to the self only, but to other members of the society as well. In such a way, utilitarianism seems to be a simple theory). The most significant thing is that its results may be easy to apply. Thereby, it is opposite to egoism.
III. Concluding Remarks
Kaplan, R. D. (2015, November 28). The 19th century thinker still has much to teach us on liberty. “John Stewart Mill, Dead Thinker of the Year”.
Philosophy. Utilitarinism. The nature of utilitarianism.
Kay, C. D. (1997). Notes on Utilitarianism. Department of Philosophy.
Serebrianskii, D. S. (2005). Key Theoretical Problems. Classical Utilitarianism, 15, 90-104.