Philosophy Index

Normative ethics

Normative ethics is the area of ethics which discusses ethical standards and sources of morality. It is distinct from meta-ethics, which discusses the metaphysics of ethics and the validity of discussion of morality.

Within normative ethics are the ethical theories, or moral theories, which describe a source of morality and describe how this morality ought to be applied in general. These theories include consequentialist theories, such as utilitarianism, and deontological theories, such as social contract theory, among others.

Ethical Theories