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# Is the rightness of an action determined by its consequences

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AA01 wrote:
I marked D for the 1st question. Could you explain how C is correct?

Official Explanation

1. Which of the following best describes the function of the first paragraph?

Difficulty Level: 700

Explanation

(A) Answer choice (A) is attractive— the first sentence of the passage is, indeed, a question! However, answer choice (A) is a trap. You have to have read (or at least scanned) the rest of the passage to know that the question “Is the rightness of an action determined by its consequences, or by the intentions of the agent behind the action?” is never answered. The author simply describes philosophers’ views on the topic (the author does not take a side). Also, the point of the paragraph is not to ask the question. The question is just a small introduction to explaining deontological ethics.

(B) Answer choice (B) refers to a “process.” What process? Two (or more) ethical theories are being talked about.

(C) The first paragraph does “introduce a theory” (the theory of deontological ethics). Does the paragraph “indicate that variations in that theory exist”? Look at your chart— Kant is an absolutist, and W. D. Ross is not. Choice (C) is correct. Note that if you had not made a chart, you might think that Kant and W. D. Ross were on totally opposite sides, so it might have been very difficult to realize that their ideas are really “variations” on the same idea.

(D) Choice (D) says that the passage “advances an argument.” This implies that the author is actually advocating a position (to “advance” is to argue for). The author is simply describing philosophers’ views, not arguing in favor of anything.

(E) “Introduces a philosophy” sounds okay, but the author does not “reconcile” deontology with another philosophy (to “reconcile” two ideas would be to show that the ideas are compatible with one another). You can see from your chart that the contrast remains throughout the passage.

Hope it helps­
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Re: Is the rightness of an action determined by its consequences [#permalink]

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MeghnaIjjapureddy wrote:

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Hello MeghnaIjjapureddy

You only know similarities between virtue ethics and teleological theories; you weren’t told of any differences. That is why E is wrong.
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MeghnaIjjapureddy wrote:

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Hello MeghnaIjjapureddy

the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle is considered the founder of virtue ethics, which seeks to describe the traits of an ideally virtuous person, and then posit that we should act in accordance with those traits. reading this part carefullly must've saved you from erring. the correct option has been slightly paraphrased.
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Re: Is the rightness of an action determined by its consequences [#permalink]
Hii,
Q1 is really good!

I have doubts for choice A and B.
It poses question to be answered.
whats the exact meaning of this;
i think a question that needs to be answered and in a sense this choice seems right, needs to be answered doesn't necesseraly means author should answer it.

and B,
Isn't it a process or a way- the rightness needs to be determined by intention?
what exactly is a process?
and it is an opposing process to utilitarian and teleological?

why not A/b with respect to my reasoning?
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Re: Is the rightness of an action determined by its consequences [#permalink]
­1. Which of the following best describes the function of the first paragraph?

(A) It poses a question to be answered. - Yes, the passage asks a question in the beginning, but that doesn't describe the function of the 1st paragraph. The first paragraph shares the stance of the "deontologists" in contrast with the "teleological or utilitarian" and then shares the variation among the "deontologists." Distortion.

(B) It outlines a process and contrasts it with an opposing process. - How would the paragraph look like had option B been true? I would start with deontologists' views put side by side with "teleological or utilitarian" views. It then would detail the process used by each - deontologist and people with teleological or utilitarian views. Does the first paragraph look anything like this? No. Wrong.

(C) In introduces a theory and indicates that variations in that theory exist. - Yes. A theory is an idea or an organized set of principles. The first paragraph states the idea of "deontologists." It then shares a variation in that idea or principle by W.D. Ross. Ok.

(D) It advances an argument to be disputed later in the passage. - How would the first paragraph look had option D been correct? What is an argument? A claim, opinion, or advocacy followed by the supporting premises or rejecting the ideas against the theory. Had option D been correct, the passage would have contained some claim by the author or someone else, like saying - a deontologist's view is the best. Then, persuade the reader with some analysis supporting the view and adding the challenges later in the passage. Does the 1st paragraph look like it? No. The word "assert" in the 1st paragraph states/describes the view of the deontologists. It's just descriptive rather than argumentative. The author doesn't take any sides or premises substantiate any opinion. Wrong.

(E) It introduces a philosophy and attempts to reconcile it with another philosophy. - No attempt is to reconcile deontological ethics with teleological or utilitarian ethics. The author shares the contrasts between the two. There is no attempt to find the middle ground or to integrate the perspectives.
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