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Beyond Bumper Sticker Ethics: An Introduction to Theories of Right & Wrong

3.61  ·  Rating details ·  99 Ratings  ·  19 Reviews
With this introductory text, Steve Wilkens takes a fresh, friendly approach to understanding and evaluating various ethical systems. Beginning each chapter with a "bumper sticker" slogan ("If it feels good, do it"; "God said it, I believe it, that settles it;" "When in Rome?"), he then moves on to examine the complex questions, conclusions and assumptions that lie at its h ...more
Paperback, 203 pages
Published November 7th 1995 by IVP Academic (first published October 31st 1995)
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Dec 03, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ethics
This breezy book was, surprisingly, a very, very good introduction to a few of the most popular ethical theories. I've read about 4 introductions to ethics over the past year or so, and though this one wasn't the best all around (so far I've given that award to Pojman), it is probably the best for the philosophical novice. I'd say this book would be perfect for a highschooler or college freshman.

Wilkens was very fair with all the positions he discussed, making sure to mention the positive elemen
Jul 07, 2008 rated it liked it
This book is also to help me for my written exam towards completion of my comprehensive exams. As I read this book, I am building my own ethical framework. Who else has constructed theirs? When I first started this book... I didn't have any ethics whatsoever, but layer by layer, I am constructing and by the end, I should have a great, big, fabulous framework of Ethics.
David Friend
Feb 27, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book gives a quick overview of multiple ethical views. This book is written from a Biblical perspective so all the ethical view and systems are measured up to what Scripture has to say. I had to read it for a class but it was an informative and interesting read to discover what people believe and where people are coming from.
Oct 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: philosophy
I had mixed feelings about this book. Sometimes it seemed to be simplistic and slanted to a particular viewpoint. But the author admits at least that it was meant to be an introduction to ethics, and I can accept that.
Sean McGowan
May 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Good introduction to the major ethical theories.
Sep 12, 2012 rated it liked it
Purpose for Reading: Required reading for Ethics class

Blessings: The book is very honest. Wilkens went through all the ethical theories with honest evaluation, giving its pros and cons. Man-made ethical theories will indeed have some benefits; but they will always have one or more weaknesses.

Disappointments: While I understand that this book's purpose is to introduce the various theories of ethics, it is disappointing, however, not to have an extended discussion on biblical-based.

Al Datum
Jul 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is a good introduction to ethical philosophy, exploring the various worldviews that try to explain the existence of good and evil (and some that try to pretend good and evil don't even exist). The author is a Christian, and makes a persuasive case that good and evil are best explained by the Judaeo-Christian worldview (something I agree with him on). It's an easy read and a very approachable introduction to what can become a very difficult topic.

If you have an interest in reading about ethi
Jan 24, 2011 rated it liked it
Great primer for anyone new to the study of ethics. The book is thoroughly accessible and includes brief, but well-generalized summaries of:

1. Cultural Relativism
2. Ethical Egoism (Ayn Rand)
3. Behaviorism (B.F. Skinner)
4. Utilitarianism (Bentham & Mill)
5. Kantianism
6. Virtue Ethics
7. Situation Ethics
8. Natural Law Ethics
9. Divine Command Theory

Each chapter also includes an overview of the pros and cons of each ethical system. While a more experienced scholar may be bored with this book, i
Jul 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Most ethics books are either admirably dry and deadly boring or nasty, gross, and immoral. You tend to feel either like you're being sat on by an elephant or like there's germy seaweed sprouting out of your hair.:P This book is a miracle. It's still boring, of course--the subject simply is a dull one--but the author can write as well as C.S. Lewis and his point of view is impartial but clean.
Belinda Long
Aug 22, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Belinda by:
I really enjoyed this read. I think the author did an excellent job of putting theories into writing and offering both positive and negative aspects of each theory. He then smoothly ties it all together in a way that someone with no prior teachings in Philosophy can understand. I loved that at the end of the book he also helps the reader determine a way to explore his or her own philosophy.
Nov 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing
A great introduction to ethics. This can be a quick read but should be digested slowly. There is much to chew on. I especially appreciated reading about ethical egoism using Ayn Rand as an example. This book is very well written and easy to understand.
Brenda Cregor
Jul 13, 2010 is currently reading it
Here I go...
Nov 18, 2008 rated it liked it
A good basic text on the different ethical theories. An easy read. Worth picking up if you know nothing about ethics or need a brief refresher.
Dec 05, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Excellent! Really makes you think about what you and others believe.
Scott Mitts
Apr 07, 2013 rated it liked it
A good and practical foundation for further study.
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