ERIC Number: ED326888
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Jan
Reference Count: N/A
The Virtue Ethics Canon: Laying the Foundation for Moral Responsibility in Scholastic Journalism.
Day, Louis A.; Butler, John M.
This paper recommends that the high school journalism curriculum assume a prominent position in the teaching of ethics in the public academy. The paper proposes to lay the foundation for strategies that will foster student journalists' skill and enthusiasm in covering controversial issues, while requiring them to justify their decisions--particularly those with ethical implications--based upon the principles of sound moral reasoning. It relies upon principles referred to as the "virtue ethics canon," (a set of principles set forth by the ancient Greek philosophers for moral education and the development of individual virtue), namely that: (1) there are certain fundamental, universal, and immutable moral values; (2) these values can be taught; and (3) these values must be applied through the process of moral reasoning as a precondition for virtuous behavior. The paper begins with a brief examination of the philosophical foundations of the virtue ethics canon and its early role in the American educational system. The paper then discusses the demise of the canon in the face of the relentless pressure from the forces of pragmatism, progressive education, and moral relativism that precipitated the present crisis within the public academy in general and scholastic journalism in particular. The paper then examines the theoretical foundations for a restoration of the canon within the journalism curriculum and some of the guidelines that should be considered in the teaching of moral reasoning to student reporters and editors. Ninety-one notes are included. (SR)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Evaluative; Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Controversial Topics; Hazelwood School District v Kuhlmeier
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Conference of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (Miami, FL, January 25, 1991).