The Comtist system is utilitarianism crowned by a fantastic decoration.
The further development of theological utilitarianism was conditioned by opposition to the Moral Sense doctrine of Shaftesbury and Hutcheson.
Among such theories utilitarianism especially is the natural result of the application to the phenomenon of conduct of the Baconian experimental method.
Theological and political utilitarianism alike had been individualistic. But Darwin shows how the moral sense or conscience may be regarded as derived from the social instincts, which are common to men and animals.
From Bentham the leadership in utilitarianism passed to James Mill, who made no characteristic addition to its doctrine, and from him to John Stuart Mill.
In philosophy his chief work was to systematize and expound the utilitarianism of his father and Bentham (see Utilitarianism).
His theory is a sort of reconciliation of utilitarianism with intuitionism, a position which he reached by studying Mill in combination with Kant and Butler.
Finally, side by side with a theory of the nature of moral obligation thus fundamentally empirical and a posteriori in its outlook, he maintains in his account of justice the existence of the idea of justice as distinct from a mere sentiment, carrying with it an a priori belief in its existence and identical in its a priori and intuitive character with the ultimate criterion of Utilitarianism itself.
His ethics have sometimes been regarded as pure utilitarianism (so e.g.
It is only possible to allude briefly here to the different conclusions that he has attained in treating the various problems, as for example in Aesthetic, the unity of art and language, of intuition and expression, the negation of particular arts, the refutation of literary and artistic classes, the criticism of rhetoric, of grammar and so forth; and in the Philosophy of the Practical or of Practice, the conciliation of the antitheses of utilitarianism and moralism, the critique of precepts, of laws and of casuistry, the new conception of judgments of value, the constitution of a philosophic economy side by side with the science of Economy, the resolution of the Philosophy of rights in the Philosophy of economic, and so forth.