Ethical absolutism

Ethical absolutism is the concept that ethical rules are the same everywhere. As an example of ethical absolutism, consider that the United Nations unanimously passed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, from which some of those rights are:

  • Everyone has the right to life, liberty, and security of person.

  • No one shall be held in slavery or servitude.

  • No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention, or exile.

  • No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property.

Any system of ethical thought that focuses strongly on one’s rights and duties is likely founded upon the concept of ethical absolutism. Many religions promulgate a set of “thou shalt not” rules that do not allow for varying interpretations under any circumstances - these rules are all based on ethical absolutism.

Ethical absolutism is also known as moral absolutism.

Related Courses

Behavioral Ethics
Ethical Frameworks in Accounting
Unethical Behavior