Ruth benedict also had an interesting take on moral relativism, contending that there was in fact no such thing as morals, but simply that what we perceive to but moral guidelines are simply cultural guidelines until recent history, we have been so cut off from other cultures that it was feasible to live in a. Ethics and law term papers (paper 16911) on cultural relativism : topic 1: cultural relativism cultural relativism, as defined by ruth benedict in her article a defense of cultural relativism, is the theory that term paper 16911. Many of boas' students helped disseminate this approach, and some, such as melville herskovits and ruth benedict, made more explicit its implications with respect to ethics, arguing that a relativistic outlook can help combat prejudice and promote tolerance the debate over moral relativism in modern times has thus not. The challenge of cultural relativism by james rachels “morality differs in every society, and is a convenient term for socially approved habits” ruth benedict, patterns of culture (1934) 21 how different cultures have different moral codes darius, a king of ancient persia, was intrigued by the variety of. Ruth benedict (1887-1948), an anthropologist, argues that science forces us to accept ethical relativism pointing to the diversity of accepted behavior within diverse societies, benedict famously concludes: so she is clearly saying that what is habitual depends on social conditioning within the culture.
Ruth benedict essaysthe explorations into the enculturation of human beings and its numerous variations have molded the groundwork of anthropology a field so entrenched in the comparative study of human societies and cultures, anthropology has facilitated the understanding of how humans have adapt. In ruth benedict's essay entitled a defense of moral relativism , she discusses the idea that morality is simply a convenient term for socially approved customs benedict believes that people are like plastic they are simply molded by their surroundings in benedict's essay she says, “ most individuals are plastic to the. In his essay, “who's to judge”, philosopher louis pojman makes explicit the anthropologist ruth benedict claims that morality is “a convenient term for socially benedict asserts that such examples establish the validity of moral relativism this couldn't be further from the truth while there are certainly moral judgments. Benedict, in patterns of culture, expresses her belief in cultural relativism she desired to show that each culture has its own moral imperatives that can be understood only if one studies that culture as a whole it was wrong, she felt, to disparage the customs or values of a culture different.
Cultures differ widely in their moral practices as anthropologist ruth benedict illustrates in patterns of culture, diversity is evident even on those matters of morality where we would expect to agree: we might suppose that in the matter of taking life all peoples would agree on condemnation on the contrary, in the matter of. Essays and criticism on ruth benedict - critical essays her most famous works, patterns of culture and the chrysanthemum and the sword, are noted for applying concepts of psychology to anthropological studies both books greatly reflect on ruth benedict's idea on ethics in the context of cultural relativism.
Gordon p hemsley long paper prof s abu rizvi december 6, 2007 hcol 095 a cultural and ethical relativism are two widespread theories that are used to explain the differences among cultures and their ethics and morals the two similar theories describe the moral, ethical, and societal differences that diverse cultures. As moral relativism when i was taking an ethics class at long beach city college, we read a paper called “a defense of moral relativism” by ruth benedict the essay did a very good job of presenting the argument for moral relativism she emphasized the diversity of views that various people and cultures have on. This conception of culture, and principle of cultural relativism, were for kroeber and his colleagues the fundamental contribution of anthropology, and what distinguished anthropology from similar disciplines such as sociology and psychology ruth benedict, another of boas's students, also argued that an appreciation of the.
Ethical relativism is the doctrine that the moral rightness and as we noted in the introduction of this essay, there is enormous variety in what may count as a moral principle in a given society the human condition is malleable in the extreme, allowing any number of folkways or moral codes as ruth benedict has written. An early dissent came from the sociologist william graham sumner, who proposed a version of moral relativism in his 1906 folkways but the most influential challenge originated with the anthropologist franz boas he and his students—in particular, ruth benedict, melville j herskovits, and margaret. Ruth benedict (patterns of culture, 1934) cultural relativism, as it has been called, challenges our ordinary belief in the objectivity and universality of moral truth it says, in effect, that there is not the first thing we need to notice is that at the heart of cultural relativism there is a certain form of argument the strategy.