Hi. This is just a reminder that your term paper is due on 11/27. Please don’t forget it and please don’t wait to write it at the last minute. This one carries a lot of weight in your total course score. You’ll need to thoroughly explain Deontological Ethics and Utilitarianism and explicitly apply both the categorical imperative and the hedonistic calculus. Please don’t wait!
You may either write a paper or film yourself explaining your resolution to the moral dilemma. Both papers and films must meet the following criteria.
For your term paper, you’ll need to read at least the first two chapters of Jon Ronson’s book, “So You’ve been Publicly Shamed.” Your paper centers around the scenario described in Chapter 2, between Jonah Lehrer and Michael Moynihan. If you do some research, you’ll find several videos, interviews and articles about this dilemma, and, with proper citations, you are welcome to bring that information into your term paper assignment. However, no research is necessary whatsoever. You can write your term paper based solely upon the information provided in Chapter 2 of Jon Ronson’s book. In fact, there is a danger involved with doing further research and that is that you may find a lot of extraneous information that you feel compelled to bring into your term paper that actually distracts you from the purpose/focus of the term paper itself and you’ll be graded based upon the purpose/focus of the term paper as found in the grading rubric below. My advice–and I feel like Willy Wonka when I write this because Veruka still turns into a blueberry despite my protestations—is not to do any research until after you submit the term paper. This book will make you want to look up the actual videos and interviews. It is a train wreck.
Papers must be typed, double spaced, size 12 font and no more than 3 pages in length. Films must be a maximum of 5 minutes long. You will not be graded based upon grammar, punctuation, oral presentation skills but you will be graded based upon the ideas communicated.
Papers or films must have a clearly defined thesis statement, e.g. Michael Moynihan performs the morally correct action when he sends in his article according to ______________________ (Deontology, Utilitarianism, Act or Rule) and, yet, fails to perform the morally correct action according to ________________________ (Deontology, Utilitarianism, Act or Rule) and, ultimately, the author of this paper agrees with the _______________________ assessment of his actions. (Feel free to copy and paste this thesis into your paper or fill in the blanks and use it in your film.)
Paragraph describing the dilemma (Chapter 2 in “So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed”)
Paragraph describing Utilitarianism and reasoning
Paragraph applying Utilitarian reasoning to the dilemma
Paragraph describing Kantian ethics and reasoning
Paragraph applying Kantian reasoning to the dilemma
Paragraph comparing and contrasting Utilitarianism with Kantian ethics and how they apply to the dilemma
Short paragraph stating with which reasoning do you agree and at least one GOOD reason why
Conclusion–including a restatement of the thesis and how you supported it in this paper.
Click on “Submit Assignment” and then click “media.” Canvas will open your camera button to record. Please note: you need to be working on a computer with a camera. (I once became very frustrated trying to record a film on a computer without a camera—it don’t work. ha ha)
**While the lower row of the grading rubric addresses issues of paper construction (Paper structure, sentence construction, grammar, spelling, etc.) this class has no content, prerequisites or corequisites for paper writing. Since this is the case, the bottom row of the grading rubic will not affect your grade. I may, as your instructor, provide some notes regarding paper structure, grammar, and spelling but these notes are merely coaching for future classes. I want you to be successful not only in my class but also in your overall academic goals. The same grading rubric will be used for grading video submissions making the necessary adjustments from written to oral work.
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