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Relativism, Multiculturalism, And Universal Norms

Decent Essays
Ani Martirosyan
Philosophy 305
Business Ethics
Assignment #4
Chapter 8: Relativism, Multiculturalism, And Universal Norms: Their Role in Business Ethics
The central thesis of Beauchamp’s argument is as follows: I argue that although a relativism of all moral standards is an untenable position, a lower-level relativism of moral judgment and multiculturalism are morally warranted. I conclude that there is a universal common morality, but that it allows for moral disagreement and legitimate differences of opinion about how to render universal norms specific for business contexts. Moral relativism is defined as the view that ethical standards and morality are culturally based and therefore based on a person 's individual choice. Beauchamp discusses two types of relativism: cultural and normative.
Cultural relativism is the assumption that an individual human 's beliefs and activities should be understood by others in terms of that individual 's own culture. For instance, moral principles of honesty, fair dealing, freedom of association, and respect for human dignity are similar in all cultures. Beauchamp defines normative relativism as the view that anything is right or wrong whenever some group, culture, religion, or individual judges that it is right or wrong. For instance, the Enron scandal is mentioned. Enron executives found out that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission were starting an investigation of Enron’s accounting inconsistencies. Enron and its accounting
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