Print version ISSN 0121-5612
LOPEZ RIVERA, Jorge Andrés. CONTRADICTIONS AND POSSIBILITIES OF UTILITARIAN LIBERALISM AS A MODERN IDEOLOGY. colomb.int. [online]. 2010, n.71, pp. 264-282. ISSN 0121-5612.
As a modern ideology, utilitarian liberalism emerges under the act of establishing objective criteria of secular morality. The greatest happiness principle is taken as the main principle for guiding action; nevertheless, its expression and application differs into versions of utilitarian liberalism. Hence, in this text, the author presents how different epistemological proposals, which intent to give background to moral objective principles and to interpret social relations, affect utilitarian liberalism as an ideology. In other words, in a wide sense, utilitarianism is taken as a coherent set of values and ideas that constitutes sense of social reality. Consequently, and taking the works of Mill and Bentham, an analysis of modern utilitarianism is done. According to it, the author argues that Bentham´s formulation embeds an aporia due to unilateral use of instrumental rationality, which restricts its capacity to constitute sense. The aporia can only be overcome by the introduction of ethical principles, as Mill does, that allows the validation of utilitarian liberalism as an ideology.
Keywords : Utilitarianism; political liberties; civil liberties; ideology; representative government; social cohesion.