Adventures in Ethics and Science

Chad thinks it’s a good point in the week for internet quizzes. So, since I saw it at Arbitrary Marks, I took a quiz to determine my ethical style. (No, “bossy” isn’t one of the possible results.)

What the quiz says about me after the jump.

Jean-Paul Sartre (100%)

Kant (97%)

John Stuart Mill (83%)

Jeremy Bentham (77%)

Stoics (73%)

Aquinas (63%)

Ayn Rand (59%)

Spinoza (55%)

Prescriptivism (49%)

Nel Noddings (46%)

St. Augustine (46%)

Plato (40%)

Nietzsche (39%)

Aristotle (35%)

David Hume (34%)

Epicureans (34%)

Ockham (27%)

Cynics (20%)

Thomas Hobbes (20%)

Here’s the disclaimer about how to interpret the scores:

The results are scored on a curve. The highest score, 100, represents the closest philosophical match to your reponses. This is not to say that you and the philosopher are in total agreement.

Surprises: Sarte is my top match? Aristotle is 5th from the bottom? (I would have guessed higher.) Rand is as high in the list as 7th?

While I’m not a card-carrying Kantian, it turns out that I’m not completely surprised that he’s second on my list of matches.

And, I need to mention my favorite feature of the quiz: each of the multiple choice items includes “Doesn’t matter/Dislike all answer choices” as a choice. Especially for a surevy about ethics (where one’s view may not be neatly captured by the other available choices), this is pretty neat.


  1. #1 Uncle Fishy
    June 27, 2006

    Wow, our top nine are the same (although in a different order. 100% Kant here). You out-Plato me. I out-Cynics you, and I have a much higher epicureans percentage. That must have something to do with parenting.

  2. #2 Janet D. Stemwedel
    June 27, 2006

    I wonder whether birth order (or even age) might have something to do with these differences.

  3. #3 razib
    June 27, 2006

    I wonder whether birth order (or even age) might have something to do with these differences.

    there might be something in frank sulloway’s book about this (though think sulloway’s work has been discredited personally).

  4. #4 Jennifer Ouellette
    June 27, 2006

    I got the exact same top four, except Kant was #1 and Sartre was #2. Hmmm… And apparently my moral outlook gibes better with Epicureans than Plato…

  5. #5 Brock
    June 28, 2006

    That’s an interesting quiz, but that site is a vicious pop-up trap.

  6. #6 Janet D. Stemwedel
    June 28, 2006

    I’ll take your word for it on the pop-up ads — Firefox blocks them for me.

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