Non-factualism and Evaluative Supervenience

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Supervenience in metaethics is the notion that there can be no moral dif-ference between two acts, persons or events without some non-moral difference underlying it. If St. Francis is a good man, there could not be a man exactly like St. Francis in non-evaluative respects that is not good. The phenomenon was first systematically discussed by R. M. Hare (1952), who argued that realists about evaluative properties struggle to account for it. As is well established, Hare, and following him, Simon Blackburn, mistakenly took the relevant phenomenon to be weak rather than strong supervenience, and the explanations they offered for it are accordingly outdated. In this paper, I present a non-factualist account of strong su-pervenience of the evaluative and argue that it fares better than compet-ing realist views in explaining the conceptual nature of the phenomenon, as well as in offering an account of the supervenience of the evaluative in general, rather than more narrowly the moral. While Hare and Blackburn were wrong about the specifics, they were right in that non-factualists can offer a plausible account of the supervenience of the evaluative, that in certain respects is superior to competing realist explanations.
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Archival date: 2021-03-26
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