Higher Education

Ethics: A Pluralistic Approach to Moral Theory, 5th Edition

  • Lawrence M. Hinman University of San Diego
  • ISBN-10: 1133050018  |  ISBN-13: 9781133050018
  • 400 Pages
  • Previous Editions: 2008, 2003, 1998
  • © 2013 | Published
  • College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $120.00
  *Why an online review copy?
  • It's the greener, leaner way to review! An online copy cuts down on paper and on time. Reduce the wait (and the weight) of printed texts. Your online copy arrives instantly, and you can review it anytime from your computer or favorite mobile device.

If you prefer a print copy to review, please contact your representative.



ETHICS: A PLURALISTIC APPROACH TO MORAL THEORY, FIFTH EDITION provides a comprehensive yet clear introduction to the main traditions in ethical thought, including virtue ethics, utilitarianism, and deontology. Additionally, the book presents a conceptual framework of ethical pluralism to help students understand the relationship among various theories. Lawrence Hinman, one of today's most respected and accomplished educators in ethics and philosophy education, presents a text that gives students plentiful opportunities to explore ethical theory and their own responses to them, using fascinating features such as the "Ethical Inventory" sections that appear at the beginning and the end of the text. End-of-chapter discussion questions, and the use of current issues and movies help students retain what they've learned and truly comprehend the subject matter.

Features and Benefits

  • The fifth edition keeps with the new emphasis on the nature of moral conflict and how different moral theories seek to address moral conflict, introduced in the fourth edition to remain consistent with the latest trends in ethical thought.
  • An "Ethical Inventory" at the beginning and the end of the text helps students assess changes in their own moral beliefs.
  • Discussion questions at the end of each chapter revisit and probe topics originally presented in the "Ethical Inventory" and relate issues that are explored in each chapter to contemporary moral issues and popular movies.
  • Each chapter contains vivid, real-life examples and a bibliography that guides students through the maze of primary and secondary literature.

Table of Contents

1. The Moral Point of View.
2. Moral Conflict.
3. The Ethics of Divine Commands: Religious Moralities.
4. The Ethics of Selfishness: Egoism.
5. The Ethics of Consequences: Utilitarianism.
6. The Ethics of Duty: Immanuel Kant.
7. The Ethics of Rights: Contemporary Theories.
8. The Ethics of Justice: From Plato to Rawls.
9. The Ethics of Character: Aristotle and Our Contemporaries.
10. The Ethics of Diversity: Gender.
11. The Ethics of Diversity: Race, Ethnicity, and Multiculturalism.
12. Ethics in the 21st Century.

What's New

  • The new edition incorporates numerous new examples from ethics at the frontiers of science including the web, stem cells, cloning, neuroscience, Google, robots, and more.
  • The text now contains extended discussions of issues of war, peace and terrorism in the 21st century: torture, electronic surveillance, revolution.
  • The discussion questions have been updated with new references to movies and online video.
  • A fully-revised chapter on "Ethics in the 21st Century", concludes the text.

Efficacy and Outcomes


"The Hinman offers a diverse array of moral theories in introductory fashion, without sacrificing complexity."

— Christopher Melley, City Colleges of Chicago

"Quite frankly, in the 42 years that I have been teaching Philosophy, this is the best ethics textbook I have ever seen."

— Ted Barnes, Coastline Community College

"Provides broad coverage, is engaging without being overly simplistic, and has outstanding web resources."

— Mark Hebert, Austin College

Meet the Author

Author Bio

Lawrence M. Hinman

Lawrence M. Hinman is a Professor of Philosophy and Director of the Values Institute at the University of San Diego. In addition to numerous articles in philosophy, he is the author of ETHICS: A PLURALISTIC APPROACH TO MORAL THEORY (Wadsworth) and CONTEMPORARY MORAL ISSUES (McGraw-Hill).