Reasons as Premises of Good Reasoning

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Many philosophers have been attracted to the view that reasons are premises of good reasoning – that reasons to φ are premises of good reasoning towards φ-ing. However, while this reasoning view is indeed attractive, it faces a problem accommodating outweighed reasons. In this article, I argue that the standard solution to this problem is unsuccessful and propose an alternative, which draws on the idea that good patterns of reasoning can be defeasible. I conclude by drawing out implications for the debate over pragmatic reasons for belief and other attitudes and for one influential form of reductionism about the normative.
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First archival date: 2015-11-21
Latest version: 2 (2019-05-13)
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The Moral Problem.Smith, Michael

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What is Reasoning?McHugh, Conor & Way, Jonathan
What is Good Reasoning?McHugh, Conor & Way, Jonathan
Reasons and Guidance.Way, Jonathan & Whiting, Daniel

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