Write an essay responding to the following prompt:
Please examine either the morality of “sweatshop” labor or the condition of labor in the “developed” world (or both if you find it useful to bring them into some relation to each other) as is treated in essays by Maitland, Arnold & Bowie, Krugman, Heidegger, Nietzsche, and Rand, as well as in the film Up in the Air(2009).
Some questions you might address: Is the morality of labor (in sweatshops or corporate offices) best examined in respect to human dignity or the best (or least bad) likely consequences?
What role should meaning or freely chosen purpose play in labor?
Should we worry about a kind of coercion that one might find in the form of manipulation of the need for meaning such as is on display in Up in the Air (note how United Airlines appeals to “loyalty,” or how Hertz and other companies cultivate a sense of belonging)?
What role does exploitation play in the prevailing conditions of labor?
Does expression on the part of laborers of a wish to keep their positions (as testified to in the case of sweatshop labor by Maitland, or as we witness in the case of labor in the developed world in Up in the Air) testify to the absence of exploitation?
Might exploitation be actually necessary for morality, as Nietzsche would have it?
Or, alternatively, are we all only properly pursuing our own self-interest, making the very idea of exploitation nonsense, as Rand would appear to argue? Your essay should be roughly 3 typed and double-spaced pages in length (12 pt. Times New Roman font with 1” margins).
No cover sheet is required. Just type your name, the class, and the time of your discussion section in the top left corner. You are strongly encouraged to discuss all aspects of this course, including this essay assignment, with your fellow students, but the work you turn in must be entirely your own.
I would strongly prefer that you rely exclusively on the texts assigned for class and your class notes in the preparation of your essay, but all materials quoted or referenced therein must be properly cited. Proofread your work carefully. It should be entirely free of all spelling and grammatical errors.
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