Phil 330 F10: Exam 1

Philosophy 330: First Exam

General Directions: Your response to these questions should be typed, double-spaced with 10-12 point font and 1” margins. In answering the questions do not spend time introducing the issue, but get straight to the question being asked. This exam is due in in my mailbox in the Philosophy Department or via email by Tuesday, September 28, 2010 at 5:00 PM. If you email me the exam, it must be in .doc, .rtf, or .pdf format.

Part I: Answer three of the following four questions. Your answer for each question should be no more than two pages. Each question is worth 10 points.
  1. How does Hume answer the following question: “I would fain ask any one why incest in the human species is criminal, and why the very same action, and the same relations in animals have not the smallest moral turpitude and deformity?” (Page 32)
  2. How does Kant use the formula of universal law to argue that it is wrong to commit suicide? The answer is on page 50 of our text.
  3. On page 39 of our text, Mill considers and responds to the following objection: “To suppose that life has (as they express it) no higher end than pleasure—no better and nobler object of desire and pursuit—they designate as utterly mean and groveling; as a doctrine worthy only of swine” Explain this objection and Mill’s response to it.
  4. On page 64 of our text, Rawls criticizes the theory of Utilitarianism. Explain this criticism.

Part II: Read the following passage and then answer the questions that follow in an articulate, well-written essay of 2-3 pages (typed, double-spaced with 10-12 point font and 1” margins). This question is worth 20 points.

Suppose you are a poor and uneducated person from Chicago. Your only chance for success in life is through athletics, particularly distance running. You have trained hard, and you have placed high in ten-kilometer and marathon races, but you have never run a major race. You need to be just a little faster to win. In one month, there is the Chicago Marathon, with a cash price of $50,000 for the winner. There is a good chance that the winner will also get a lucrative contract with a major shoe company, such as Nike. A friend who is an athletic trainer tells you she has obtained a limited supply of a new drug that dramatically improves endurance by preventing the buildup of lactic acid in the muscles. The drug is the result of genetic research on human growth hormones, and thus far, it has been tested on animals with no bad side effects. It seems much safer and more effective than steroids or the human growth hormones used by some runners. Your friend offers you a month’s supply of the drug. She assures you that it is not on the list of banned drugs and that it will not show up on any of the drug tests currently being used. In return for giving you the drug, your friend wants $5,000, but only if you win the race and collect the cash prize. If you do not win you owe her nothing.

Should you take the drug? Why or why not? Answer these questions from the perspectives of Aquinas and Aristotle. What do you think of this issue?