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The Dark Knight and Utilitarianism

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Lauren Zmirich

on 26 November 2013

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Transcript of The Dark Knight and Utilitarianism

The Dark Knight and Utilitarianism
John Stuart Mill Essentially Says...
That we should figure out what we want for our own pleasure and apply them to all sentient beings. Try and apply it to all things to make all things as happy as possible.
How Does This Apply to Batman?
Batman is a character that frequently employs Utilitarian ideals. He acts for the benefit of everyone not just himself or his own loved ones. His actions tend to promote the happiness of the greatest number of people.
When Do We See It Again?
Batman Makes A Choice...
Batman chooses to maximize the happiness of the many rather than the few. He knows that while he loves Rachel and would be happier if she were saved, he understands that more people benefit from DA Harvey Dent being alive than Rachel.
Basic Idea of Utilitarianism
An action is right if it tends to promote happiness overall (for everyone) and wrong if it tends to promote unhappiness (for everyone).
When Do We See This?
Even in the Dark Knight Rises...
Batman chooses to give up his own happiness and his own life in order to maximize the happiness of everyone.
Batman Carries the Bomb...
The Joker Forces A Choice
According to Utilitarianism It is not immoral to blow up the other boat if we are to believe that the Joker would in fact blow both up if they do not choose. In this case, the person who activates the explosion is acting heroically as this choice would save more life than if they let the Joker blow both ferries up himself. The choice to blow up one ferry is ensuring the maximum degree of happiness.
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