Instrumental Normativity: In Defense of the Transmission Principle

Ethics 125 (4):921-946 (2015)
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If you ought to perform a certain act, and some other action is a necessary means for you to perform that act, then you ought to perform that other action as well – or so it seems plausible to say. This transmission principle is of both practical and theoretical significance. The aim of this paper is to defend this principle against a number of recent objections, which (as I show) are all based on core assumptions of the view called actualism. I reject actualism, provide an alternative explanation of its plausible features, and present an independent argument for the transmission principle.

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Benjamin Kiesewetter
Bielefeld University


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