The Ethics of Lying
“What then is truth? A movable host of metaphors, metonymies, and anthropomorphisms: in short, a sum of human relations which have been poetically and rhetorically intensified, transferred, and embellished…” (Nietzsche)
Defining truth is a challenge that philosophers, if not all of us, have been confronted with. Truth seems to be something objective: true statements are assertions, or beliefs that accurately describe reality. But a true statement also must be consistent with our Weltanschauung, with our other beliefs and the general perspective we have of the world.
We see truth as a deep human value and virtue, but when is it ethical to lie? Are some lies necessary to keep the fabric of our society together? We’ll explore these questions and many more, leading us to examine the pitfalls of sincerity and the advantages of silence.
This will be the launch of a new topic for the philosophy club. Join us as we choose the future focus of the club and dig into the timeless topic of Truth.
Teacher: Jeanne Proust
Jeanne Proust has studied Philosophy and Visual Arts in Bordeaux, Berlin, and Paris. Her research focuses on Théodule Ribot’s Diseases of the Will, both in philosophical and psychological perspectives. While teaching at different universities here in New York, Jeanne is advocating for a widening of philosophical education beyond the frontiers of academia.