Moral Realism and the Search for Ideological Truth: A Philosophical-Psychological Collaboration

In Robin Celikates, Sally Haslanger & Jason Stanley (eds.), Analyzing Ideology. Oxford University Press (2023)
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Scholars of ideology in social-scientific disciplines, including psychology, sociology, and political science, stand to benefit from taking seriously the philosophical contributions of Professor Peter Railton. This is because Railton provides much-needed conceptual precision—and a rare sense of epistemological and moral clarity—to a topic that is notoriously slippery and prone to relativistic musing and the drawing of false equivalences. In an essay entitled “Morality, Ideology, and Reflection: Or, the Duck Sits Yet,” Railton (2000/2003) aptly identified the purpose of ideological analysis as the unmasking of “nonepistemic” interests—that is, interests other than truth-seeking, accuracy, or warrant —that contribute to the development, adoption, and dissemination of political and religious belief systems.

Author Profiles

Larry Jost
University of Cincinnati
John T Jost
New York University


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