The Authority of Formality

Oxford Studies in Metaethics 13 (forthcoming)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
Etiquette and other merely formal normative standards like legality, honor, and rules of games are taken less seriously than they should be. While these standards aren’t intrinsically reason providing (or “substantive”) in the way morality is often taken to be, they also play an important role in our practical lives: we collectively treat them as important for assessing the behavior of ourselves and others and as licensing particular forms of sanction for violations. I here develop a novel account of the normativity of formal standards where the role they play in our practical lives explains a distinctive kind of reason to obey them. We have this kind of reason to be polite because etiquette is important to us. We also have this kind of reason to be moral because morality is important to us. This parallel suggests the importance we assign to morality is insufficient to justify it being substantive.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
Revision history
Archival date: 2017-09-24
View upload history
References found in this work BETA
Impassioned Belief.Ridge, Michael
The Myth of Morality.Lillehammer, Hallvard

View all 25 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Defining Normativity.Finlay, Stephen

View all 8 citations / Add more citations

Added to PP index

Total views
121 ( #28,417 of 47,316 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
31 ( #24,751 of 47,316 )

How can I increase my downloads?

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