In defense of exclusionary reasons

Philosophical Studies 178 (1):235-253 (2021)
  Copy   BIBTEX


Exclusionary defeat is Joseph Raz’s proposal for understanding the more complex, layered structure of practical reasoning. Exclusionary reasons are widely appealed to in legal theory and consistently arise in many other areas of philosophy. They have also been subject to a variety of challenges. I propose a new account of exclusionary reasons based on their justificatory role, rejecting Raz’s motivational account and especially contrasting exclusion with undercutting defeat. I explain the appeal and coherence of exclusionary reasons by appeal to commonsense value pluralism and the intermediate space of public policies, social roles, and organizations. We often want our choices to have a certain character or instantiate a certain value and in order to do so, that choice can only be based on a restricted set of reasons. Exclusion explains how pro tanto practical reasons can be disqualified from counting towards a choice of a particular kind without being outweighed or undercut.

Author's Profile

N. P. Adams
University of Virginia


Added to PP

739 (#13,281)

6 months
199 (#4,955)

Historical graph of downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks on external links on PhilPapers.
How can I increase my downloads?