Naturalism, normativity, and explanation: Some scientistic biases of contemporary naturalism

Metaphilosophy 24 (3):253-274 (1993)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
Abstract
The critical focus of this paper is on a claim made explicitly by Gilbert Harman and accepted implicitly by numerous others, the claim that naturalism supports concurrent defense of scientific objectivism and moral relativism. I challenge the assumptions of Harman's ‘argument from naturalism' used to support this combination of positions, utilizing. Hilary Putnam’s ‘companions in guilt’ argument in order to counter it. The paper concludes that while domain-specific anti-realism is often warranted, Harman’s own views about the objectivity of facts and the subjectivity of values are better seen as stemming from scientistic ideals of knowledge than from dictates of naturalism. Scientists qua scientists make value judgments, and setting aside scientistic assumptions and unrealizable conceptions of scientific objectivity should lead us to more symmetrical metaphilosophical conception of epistemic and ethical normativity than that which underlies Harman's account.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
GUYNNA
Revision history
Archival date: 2012-10-10
View upload history
References found in this work BETA

View all 57 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Added to PP index
2010-08-10

Total downloads
497 ( #4,297 of 37,122 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
22 ( #15,702 of 37,122 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks to external links.