Moral advice and moral theory

Philosophical Studies 146 (3):349 - 359 (2009)
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Abstract
Monists, pluralists, and particularists disagree about the structure of the best explanation of the rightness (wrongness) of actions. In this paper I argue that the availability of good moral advice gives us reason to prefer particularist theories and pluralist theories to monist theories. First, I identify two distinct roles of moral theorizing—explaining the rightness (wrongness) of actions, and providing moral advice—and I explain how these two roles are related. Next, I explain what monists, pluralists, and particularists disagree about. Finally, I argue that particularists and pluralists are better situated than monists to explain why it is a good idea to think before we act, and that this gives us reason to favor particularism and pluralism over monism.
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2009-01-28

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