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  1. added 2019-03-26
    The World is Not Enough.Nathan Robert Howard & N. G. Laskowski - forthcoming - Noûs.
    Throughout his career, Derek Parfit made the bold suggestion, at various times under the heading of the "Normativity Objection," that anyone in possession of normative concepts is in a position to know, on the basis of their competence with such concepts alone, that reductive realism in ethics is not even possible. Despite the prominent role that the Normativity Objection plays in Parfit's non-reductive account of the nature of normativity, when the objection hasn't been ignored, it's been criticized and even derided. (...)
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  2. added 2019-01-08
    The Metaphysics of Moral Explanations.Daniel Fogal & Olle Risberg - forthcoming - Oxford Studies in Metaethics.
    (Forthcoming pending external review) -/- It’s commonly held that particular moral facts are explained by ‘natural’ or ‘descriptive’ facts, though there’s disagreement over how such explanations work. We defend the view that general moral principles also play a role in explaining particular moral facts. More specifically, we argue that this view best makes sense of some intuitive data points, including the supervenience of the moral upon the natural. We consider two alternative accounts of the nature and structure of moral principles—’the (...)
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  3. added 2018-03-22
    The Evolutionary Manifesto.John E. Stewart - manuscript
    The Evolutionary Manifesto shows that evolution is directional and demonstrates that this has major implications for humanity. The Manifesto shows that humanity must align its social systems and behaviour with the trajectory of evolution if we are to survive and thrive into the future. The Manifesto goes on to demonstrate that humanity has an essential role to play in the future evolution of life on this planet. It demonstrates that life on Earth has reached a critical stage in evolution’s trajectory. (...)
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  4. added 2017-10-21
    A Taxonomy of Meta-Ethical Theories.Leslie Allan - manuscript
    The author contends that classifying theories in the field of meta-ethics along a single dimension misses important nuances in each theory. With the increased sophistication and complexity of meta-ethical analyses in the modern era, the traditional cognitivist–non-cognitivist and realist–anti-realist categories no longer function adequately. The author categorizes the various meta-ethical theories along three dimensions. These dimensions focus on the linguistic analysis offered by each theory, its metaphysical commitments and its degree of normative tolerance.
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  5. added 2017-10-21
    Meta-Ethics: An Introduction.Leslie Allan - manuscript
    Meta-ethics is the area of philosophy in which thinkers explore the language and nature of moral discourse and its relations to other non-moral areas of life. In this introduction to the discipline written explicitly for novices, Leslie Allan outlines the key questions and areas of analysis in contemporary meta-ethics. In clear, tabular format, he summarizes the core concepts integral to each of the major meta-ethical positions and the strengths of each view. To prompt further thinking and reading, Allan explains briefly (...)
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  6. added 2017-09-21
    Defining Normativity.Stephen Finlay - forthcoming - In Kevin Toh, David Plunkett & Scott Shapiro (eds.), Dimensions of Normativity: New Essays on Metaethics and Jurisprudence. Oxford University Press.
    This paper investigates whether different philosophers’ claims about “normativity” are about the same subject or (as recently argued by Derek Parfit) theorists who appear to disagree are really using the term with different meanings, in order to cast disambiguating light on the debates over at least the nature, existence, extension, and analyzability of normativity. While I suggest the term may be multiply ambiguous, I also find reasons for optimism about a common subject-matter for metanormative theory. This is supported partly by (...)
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  7. added 2017-07-11
    The Unity of Grounding.Selim Berker - 2018 - Mind 127 (507):729-777.
    I argue—contra moderate grounding pluralists such as Kit Fine and more extreme grounding pluralists such as Jessica Wilson—that there is fundamentally only one grounding/in-virtue-of relation. I also argue that this single relation is indispensable for normative theorizing—that we can’t make sense of, for example, the debate over consequentialism without it. It follows from what I argue that there is no metaethically-pure normative ethics.
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  8. added 2017-02-20
    Desire-Based Reasons, Naturalism, and the Possibility of Vindication: Lessons From Moore and Parfit.Attila Tanyi - 2009 - Polish Journal of Philosophy 3 (2):87-107.
    The aim of the paper is to critically assess the idea that reasons for action are provided by desires. I start from the claim that the most often employed meta-ethical background for the Model is ethical naturalism; I then argue against the Model through its naturalist background. For the latter purpose I make use of two objections that are both intended to refute naturalism per se. One is G.E. Moore’s Open Question Argument, the other is Derek Parfit’s Triviality Objection. I (...)
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  9. added 2017-01-03
    Pūrva Mīmāṃsā: Non-Natural, Moral Realism (Ethics-1, M14).Ranganathan Shyam - 2016 - In A. Raghuramaraju (ed.), Philosophy, E-PG Pathshala. Delhi: India, Department of Higher Education (NMEICT).
    In this module I set out the Moral Non-Naturalism of Pūrva Mīmāṃsā as a version of Deontology that defines duty in terms of its beneficent properties. It elucidates the scheme of right living according to ordinance or command. Whereas natural accounts of moral terms suffer from circularity (by merely re-naming of a natural property with a moral term, which then serves to justify its moral appraisal), proponents of Mīmāṃsā defend their position by offering the Vedas as constituting independent evidence about (...)
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  10. added 2016-12-15
    Altruism, Jesus and the End of the World—How the Templeton Foundation Bought a Harvard Professorship and Attacked Evolution, Rationality and Civilization. A Review of E.O. Wilson 'The Social Conquest of Earth' (2012) and Nowak and Highfield ‘SuperCooperators’ (2012).Starks Michael - 2016 - In Michael Starks (ed.), Suicidal Utopian Delusions in the 21st Century: Philosophy, Human Nature and the Collapse of Civilization-- Articles and Reviews 2006-2017 2nd Edition Feb 2018. Michael Starks. pp. 527-532.
    Famous ant-man E.O. Wilson has always been one of my heroes --not only an outstanding biologist, but one of the tiny and vanishing minority of intellectuals who at least dares to hint at the truth about our nature that others fail to grasp, or insofar as they do grasp, studiously avoid for of political expedience. Sadly, he is ending his long career in a most sordid fashion as a party to an ignorant and arrogant attack on science motivated at least (...)
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  11. added 2016-08-30
    Cornell Realism, Explanation, and Natural Properties.Luis R. G. Oliveira & Timothy Perrine - 2017 - European Journal of Philosophy 25 (2):1021-1038.
    The claim that ordinary ethical discourse is typically true and that ethical facts are typically knowable seems in tension with the claim that ordinary ethical discourse is about features of reality friendly to a scientific worldview. Cornell Realism attempts to dispel this tension by claiming that ordinary ethical discourse is, in fact, discourse about the same kinds of things that scientific discourse is about: natural properties. We offer two novel arguments in reply. First, we identify a key assumption that we (...)
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  12. added 2016-06-25
    Naturalism: Contemporary Perspectives.Juliano Santos do Carmo, Flávia Carvalho, Clademir Araldi, Carlos Miraglia, Alberto Semeler, Adriano Naves de Brito, Sofia Stein, Marco Azevedo & Nythamar de Oliveira - 2013 - NEPFIL online | Dissertatio's Series of Philosophy.
    The basic assumption present in these articles is that naturalism is highly compatible with a wide range of relevant philosophical questions and that, regardless of the classical problems faced by the naturalist, the price paid in endorsing naturalism is lower than that paid by essentialist or supernaturalist theories. Yet, the reader will find a variety of approaches, from naturalism in Moral Philosophy and Epistemology to naturalism in the Philosophy of Language, Philosophy of Mind and of the Aesthetics.
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  13. added 2016-06-19
    Thoughts About Russell's Thoughts. [REVIEW]Ray Scott Percival - 1998 - Times Higher Education.
    This collection of essays by acclaimed philosophers explores Bertrand Russell's influence on one of the dominant philosophical approaches of this century. Michael Dummett argues that analytical philosophy began with Gottlob Frege's analysis of numbers. Frege had begun by inquiring about the nature of number, but found it more fruitful to ask instead about the meanings of sentences containing number words. Russell was to exploit this method systematically. I reflect on the essays of Charles R. Pigden, David Lewis as an exponent (...)
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  14. added 2016-05-30
    'Explanatory Indispensability Arguments in Metaethics and Philosophy of Mathematics'.Debbie Roberts - 2016 - In Uri D. Leibowitz & Neil Sinclair (eds.), Explanation in Ethics and Mathematics: Debunking and Dispensability. Oxford University Press.
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  15. added 2016-03-16
    "Ważność" a naturalizm. Antypsychologizm Wilhelma Windelbanda.Tomasz Kubalica - 2007 - Idea 19.
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  16. added 2016-03-12
    Moral Incompetence.Adam Morton - 2006 - In T. D. J. Chappell (ed.), Values and Virtues: Aristotelianism in Contemporary Ethics. Oxford University Press.
    Moral high-performers have characteristic faults. I describe difficulties in handling moral problems that arise not out of faulty intentions or defective values but because the agents underestimate the complexity of the situation.
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  17. added 2016-03-06
    Evolution and the Missing Link (in Debunking Arguments).Uri D. Leibowitz & Neil Sinclair - 2017 - In Michael Ruse & Robert J. Richards (eds.), Cambridge Handbook to Evolutionary Ethics. Cambridge University Press.
    What are the consequences, for human moral practice, of an evolutionary understanding of that practice? By ‘moral practice’ we mean the way in which human beings think, talk and debate in moral terms. We suggest that the proper upshot of such considerations is moderate support for anti-realism in ethics.
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  18. added 2015-10-11
    An Inconsistency in the (Supposed) Prohibitions of Philosophy.Terence Rajivan Edward - manuscript
    In different papers, David Liggins and Chris Daly tell philosophers what they should not do. There is no sign of them withdrawing any of these prohibitions, but I show that they fail to be consistent when asserting them. The inconsistency concerns when a philosopher should defer to the empirical findings of science.
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  19. added 2015-08-31
    Deus Ex Machina: A Cautionary Tale for Naturalists.Cailin O'Connor, Nathan Fulton, Elliott Wagner & P. Kyle Stanford - 2012 - Analyse & Kritik 34 (1):51-62.
    In this paper we critically examine and seek to extend Philip Kitcher’s Ethical Project to weave together a distinctive naturalistic conception of how ethics came to occupy the place it does in our lives and how the existing ethical project should be revised and extended into the future. Although we endorse his insight that ethical progress is better conceived of as the improvement of an existing state than an incremental approach towards a fixed endpoint, we nonetheless go on to argue (...)
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  20. added 2015-05-14
    An Assumption of Extreme Significance: Moore, Ross and Spencer on Ethics and Evolution.Hallvard Lillehammer - 2016 - In Uri D. Leibowitz & Neil Sinclair (eds.), Explanation in Ethics and Mathematics: Debunking and Dispensability. Oxford University Press.
    In recent years there has been a growing interest among mainstream Anglophone moral philosophers in the empirical study of human morality, including its evolution and historical development. This chapter compares these developments with an earlier point of contact between moral philosophy and the moral sciences in the early decades of the Twentieth century, as manifested in some of the less frequently discussed arguments of G. E. Moore and W. D. Ross. It is argued that a critical appreciation of Moore and (...)
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  21. added 2015-03-16
    I Can't Relax! You're Driving Me Quasi!Stephen Ingram - 2015 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 96 (3).
    Robust Realists think that there are irreducible, non-natural, and mind-independent moral properties. Quasi -Realists and Relaxed Realists think the same, but interpret these commitments differently. Robust Realists interpret them as metaphysical commitments, to be defended by metaphysical argument. Quasi -Realists and Relaxed Realists say that they can only be interpreted as moral commitments. These theories thus pose a serious threat to Robust Realism, for they apparently undermine the very possibility of articulating the robust metaphysical commitments of this theory. I clarify (...)
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  22. added 2014-11-12
    How to Pull a Metaphysical Rabbit Out of an End-Relational Semantic Hat.N. G. Laskowski - 2014 - Res Philosophica 91 (4):589-607.
    Analytic reductivism in metaethics has long been out of philosophical vogue. In Confusion of Tongues: A Theory of Normativity (2014), Stephen Finlay tries to resuscitate it by developing an analytic metaethical reductive naturalistic semantics for ‘good.’ He argues that an end-relational semantics is the simplest account that can explain all of the data concerning the term, and hence the most plausible theory of it. I argue that there are several assumptions that a reductive naturalist would need to make about contextual (...)
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  23. added 2014-04-02
    Disagreeing About How to Disagree.Kate Manne & David Sobel - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 168 (3):823-34.
    David Enoch, in Taking Morality Seriously, argues for a broad normative asymmetry between how we should behave when disagreeing about facts and how we should behave when disagreeing due to differing preferences. Enoch claims that moral disputes have the earmarks of a factual dispute rather than a preference dispute and that this makes more plausible a realist understanding of morality. We try to clarify what such claims would have to look like to be compelling and we resist his main conclusions.
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  24. added 2014-03-20
    The Saucer of Mud, The Kudzu Vine and the Uxorious Cheetah: Against Neo-Aristotelian Naturalism in Metaethics.James Lenman - 2005 - European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 1 (2):37-50.
    Let me say something, to begin with, about wanting weird stuff. Stuff like saucers of mud. The example, famously, is from Anscombe’s Intention (Anscombe Anscombe 957)) where she is, in effect, defending a version of the old scholastic maxim, Omne appetitum appetitur sub specie boni. If your Latin is rusty like mine, what that says is just that every appetite – for better congruence with modern discussions, let’s say every desire – desires under the aspect of the good, or in (...)
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  25. added 2014-03-05
    Yes to Realism! No to Nonnaturalism! Ulysses - 2009 - Kritike 3 (1):168-177.
    I evaluate the metaphysical plausibility of the non-naturalist view of moral properties. I will mainly concentrate my evaluation on the views of Shafer-Landau (henceforth just S-L) whose defence of moral non-naturalism is the most lucid and vigorous so far. I shall try to show its metaphysical problems and defend Jackson’s Occamist naturalism about moral properties which I consider to be more consistent with the supervenience platitude.
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  26. added 2014-02-12
    Supervenience Arguments Under Relaxed Assumptions.Johannes Schmitt & Mark Schroeder - 2011 - Philosophical Studies 155 (1):133 - 160.
    When it comes to evaluating reductive hypotheses in metaphysics, supervenience arguments are the tools of the trade. Jaegwon Kim and Frank Jackson have argued, respectively, that strong and global supervenience are sufficient for reduction, and others have argued that supervenience theses stand in need of the kind of explanation that reductive hypotheses are particularly suited to provide. Simon Blackburn's arguments about what he claims are the specifically problematic features of the supervenience of the moral on the natural have also been (...)
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  27. added 2014-01-20
    Naturalism.Charles Pigden - 1991 - In Peter Singer (ed.), A Companion to Ethics. Blackwell. pp. 421-431.
    Survey article on Naturalism dealing with Hume's NOFI (including Prior's objections), Moore's Naturalistic Fallacy and the Barren Tautology Argument. Naturalism, as I understand it, is a form of moral realism which rejects fundamental moral facts or properties. Thus it is opposed to both non-cognitivism, and and the error theory but also to non-naturalism. General conclusion: as of 1991: naturalism as a program has not been refuted though none of the extant versions look particularly promising.
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  28. added 2014-01-18
    Letter From a Gentleman in Dunedin to a Lady in the Countryside.Charles Pigden - 2010 - In Hume on Is and Ought.
    I argue 1) That in his celebrated Is/Ought passage, Hume employs ‘deduction’ in the strict sense, according to which if a conclusion B is justly or evidently deduced from a set of premises A, A cannot be true and B false, or B false and the premises A true. 2) That Hume was following the common custom of his times which sometimes employed ‘deduction’ in a strict sense to denote inferences in which, in the words of Dr Watts’ Logick, ‘the (...)
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  29. added 2013-10-17
    Necessary Moral Truths and Theistic Metaethics.John Danaher - 2014 - Sophia 53 (3):309-330.
    Theistic metaethics usually places one key restriction on the explanation of moral facts, namely: every moral fact must ultimately be explained by some fact about God. But the widely held belief that moral truths are necessary truths seems to undermine this claim. If a moral truth is necessary, then it seems like it neither needs nor has an explanation. Or so the objection typically goes. Recently, two proponents of theistic metaethics — William Lane Craig and Mark Murphy — have argued (...)
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  30. added 2013-06-19
    Does Evolutionary Psychology Show That Normativity Is Mind-Dependent?Selim Berker - 2014 - In Justin D'Arms & Daniel Jacobson (eds.), Moral Psychology and Human Agency: Philosophical Essays on the Science of Ethics. Oxford University Press. pp. 215-252.
    Suppose we grant that evolutionary forces have had a profound effect on the contours of our normative judgments and intuitions. Can we conclude anything from this about the correct metaethical theory? I argue that, for the most part, we cannot. Focusing my attention on Sharon Street’s justly famous argument that the evolutionary origins of our normative judgments and intuitions cause insuperable epistemological difficulties for a metaethical view she calls "normative realism," I argue that there are two largely independent lines of (...)
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  31. added 2013-03-06
    Reductionism in Ethics.Chris Heathwood - 2013 - In Hugh LaFollette (ed.), The International Encyclopedia of Ethics. Wiley.
    An encyclopedia entry on the issue of whether morality is reducible -- that is, whether moral facts are identical to facts that can be expressed in non-moral terms.
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  32. added 2012-10-30
    Kitcher’s Revolutionary Reasoning Inversion in Ethics.Christine Clavien - 2012 - Analyse & Kritik 34 (1):117-128.
    This paper examines three specific issues raised by The Ethical Project. First, I discuss the varieties of altruism and spell out the differences between the definitions proposed by Kitcher and the ways altruism is usually conceived in biology, philosophy, psychology, and economics literature. Second, with the example of Kitcher’s account, I take a critical look at evolutionary stories of the emergence of human ethical practices. Third, I point to the revolutionary implications of the Darwinian methodology when it is thoughtfully applied (...)
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  33. added 2012-04-12
    Three Independent Factors in Epistemology.Guy Axtell & Philip Olson - 2009 - Contemporary Pragmatism 6 (2):89–109.
    We articulate John Dewey’s “independent factors” approach to moral philosophy and then adapt and extend this approach to address contemporary debate concerning the nature and sources of epistemic normativity. We identify three factors (agent reliability, synchronic rationality, and diachronic rationality) as each making a permanent contribution to epistemic value. Critical of debates that stem from the reductionistic ambitions of epistemological systems that privilege of one or another of these three factors, we advocate an axiological pluralism that acknowledges each factor as (...)
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  34. added 2011-12-16
    Evolution, Society, and Ethics: Social Darwinism Versus Evolutionary Ethics.Christine Clavien - forthcoming - In Thomas Heams (ed.), Handbook of Evolutionary Biology (provis. Title). Springer.
    Evolutionary ethics (EE) is a branch of philosophy that arouses both fascination and deep suspicion. It claims that Darwinian mechanisms and evolutionary data on animal sociality are relevant to ethical reflection. This field of study is often misunderstood and rarely fails to conjure up images of Social Darwinism as a vector for nasty ideologies and policies. However, it is worth resisting the temptation to reduce EE to Social Darwinism and developing an objective analysis of whether it is appropriate to adopt (...)
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  35. added 2011-02-18
    Metaethics for Everyone.Andrew Reisner - 2010 - Problema 4:39-64.
    As Dworkin puts it: moral scepticism is a moral view. This is in contrast to the more popular idea that the real challenge for moral realism is external scepticism, scepticism which arises because of non-moral considerations about the metaphysics of morality. I, too, do not concur with Dworkin’s strongest conclusions about the viability of external scepticism. But, I think his criticism of error scepticism offers a much needed corrective to more traditional metaethical projects. My aim in this paper is to (...)
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