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Ethical Judgment and Motivation

In Tristram McPherson & David Plunkett (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Metaethics. Routledge. pp. 308-323 (2017)

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  1. Moral Cognitivism and Motivation.Sigrun Svavarsdottir - 1999 - Philosophical Review 108 (2):161-219.
    The impact moral judgments have on our deliberations and actions seems to vary a great deal. Moral judgments play a large part in the lives of some people, who are apt not only to make them, but also to be guided by them in the sense that they tend to pursue what they judge to be of moral value, and shun what they judge to be of moral disvalue. But it seems unrealistic to claim that moral judgments play a pervasive (...)
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  • Moral Cognitivism and Motivation.Sigrun Svavarsdottir - 1999 - Philosophical Review 108 (2):161-219.
    The impact moral judgments have on our deliberations and actions seems to vary a great deal. Moral judgments play a large part in the lives of some people, who are apt not only to make them, but also to be guided by them in the sense that they tend to pursue what they judge to be of moral value, and shun what they judge to be of moral disvalue. But it seems unrealistic to claim that moral judgments play a pervasive (...)
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  • The Language of Morals.R. M. Hare - 1963 - Oxford University Press.
    Hare has written a clear, brief, and readable introduction to ethics which looks at all the fundamental problems of the subject.
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  • Thinking How to Live.Allan Gibbard - 2003 - Harvard University Press.
    An original and elegant work of metaethics, this book brings a new clarity and rigor to the discussion of these tangled issues, and will significantly alter the ...
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  • Moral Unreason: The Case of Psychopathy.Heidi Lene Maibom - 2005 - Mind and Language 20 (2):237-57.
    Psychopaths are renowned for their immoral behavior. They are ideal candidates for testing the empirical plausibility of moral theories. Many think the source of their immorality is their emotional deficits. Psychopaths experience no guilt or remorse, feel no empathy, and appear to be perfectly rational. If this is true, sentimentalism is supported over rationalism. Here, I examine the nature of psychopathic practical reason and argue that it is impaired. The relevance to morality is discussed. I conclude that rationalists can explain (...)
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  • What We Owe to Each Other.Thomas Scanlon - 1998 - Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
    In this book, T. M. Scanlon offers new answers to these questions, as they apply to the central part of morality that concerns what we owe to each other.
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  • Intention. --.G. E. M. Anscombe - 1957 - Blackwell.
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  • The Emotional Construction of Morals.Jesse Prinz - 2009 - Analysis 69 (4):701-704.
    The Emotional Construction of Morals is a book about moral judgements – the kinds of mental states we might express by sentences such as, ‘It's bad to flash your neighbors’, or ‘You ought not eat your pets’. There are three basic questions that get addressed: what are the psychological states that constitute such judgements? What kinds of properties do such judgements refer to? And, where do these judgements come from? The first question concerns moral psychology, the second metaethics and the (...)
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  • The Empirical Identity of Moral Judgment.Victor Kumar - 2016 - Philosophical Quarterly 66 (265):783-804.
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  • Freedom in Belief and Desire.Philip Pettit & Michael Smith - 1996 - Journal of Philosophy 93 (9):429-449.
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  • Freedom in Belief and Desire.Philip Pettit & Michael Smith - 1996 - Journal of Philosophy 93 (9):429-449.
    People ordinarily suppose that there are certain things they ought to believe and certain things they ought not to believe. In supposing this to be so, they make corresponding assumptions about their belief-forming capacities. They assume that they are generally responsive to what they think they ought to believe in the things they actually come to believe. In much the same sense, people ordinarily suppose that there are certain things they ought to desire and do and they make corresponding assumptions (...)
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  • Desiring the Bad: An Essay in Moral Psychology.Michael Stocker - 1979 - Journal of Philosophy 76 (12):738-753.
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  • The Language of Morals.Mary Mothersill - 1954 - Journal of Philosophy 51 (1):24-28.
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  • The Problem of the Essential Indexical.John Perry - 1979 - Noûs 13 (1):3-21.
    This collection deals with various problems related to "self-locating beliefs": the sorts of beliefs one expresses with indexicals and demonstratives, like "I" and "this." He includes such well-known essays as "Frege on Demonstratives," "The Problem of the Essential Indexical," and "The Prince and the Phone Booth.".
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  • Individualism and the Mental.Tyler Burge - 1979 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 4 (1):73-122.
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  • Believing Falsely Makes It So.David Braddon-Mitchell - 2006 - Mind 115 (460):833-866.
    that there is something rationally or conceptually defective in judging that an act is right without being in any way motivated towards it—is one which has tended to lead either to error theories of ethics on the one hand, or acceptance of the truth of internalism on the other. This paper argues that it does play a kind of subject-setting role, but that our responses to cases can be rationalised without requiring that internalism is true for ethical realism to be (...)
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  • Externalism and the Content of Moral Motivation.Caj Strandberg - 2007 - Philosophia 35 (2):249-260.
    In his fetishist argument, Michael Smith raises an important question: What is the content of the motivational states that constitute moral motivation? Although the argument has been widely discussed, this question has not received the attention it deserves. In the present paper, I use Smith’s argument as a point of departure for a discussion of how advocates of externalism as regards moral judgements can account for moral motivation. More precisely, I explore various explanations of moral motivation that externalists can employ (...)
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  • Moral Attitudes for Non-Cognitivists: Solving the Specification Problem.Gunnar Björnsson & Tristram McPherson - 2014 - Mind 123 (489):1-38.
    Moral non-cognitivists hope to explain the nature of moral agreement and disagreement as agreement and disagreement in non-cognitive attitudes. In doing so, they take on the task of identifying the relevant attitudes, distinguishing the non-cognitive attitudes corresponding to judgements of moral wrongness, for example, from attitudes involved in aesthetic disapproval or the sports fan’s disapproval of her team’s performance. We begin this paper by showing that there is a simple recipe for generating apparent counterexamples to any informative specification of the (...)
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  • The Conversational Practicality of Value Judgement.Stephen Finlay - 2004 - The Journal of Ethics 8 (3):205-223.
    Analyses of moral value judgements must meet a practicality requirement: moral speech acts characteristically express pro- or con-attitudes, indicate that speakers are motivated in certain ways, and exert influence on others' motivations. Nondescriptivists including Simon Blackburn and Allan Gibbard claim that no descriptivist analysis can satisfy this requirement. I argue first that while the practicality requirement is defeasible, it indeed demands a connection between value judgement and motivation that resembles a semantic or conceptual rather than merely contingent psychological link. I (...)
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  • Motivational Internalism and the Challenge of Amoralism.Danielle Bromwich - 2016 - European Journal of Philosophy 24 (2):452-471.
    Motivational internalism is the thesis that captures the commonplace thought that moral judgements are necessarily motivationally efficacious. But this thesis appears to be in tension with another aspect of our ordinary moral experience. Proponents of the contrast thesis, motivational externalism, cite everyday examples of amoralism to demonstrate that it is conceptually possible to be completely unmoved by what seem to be sincere first-person moral judgements. This paper argues that the challenge of amoralism gives us no reason to reject or modify (...)
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  • Intention.G. E. M. Anscombe - 1957 - Harvard University Press.
    This is a welcome reprint of a book that continues to grow in importance.
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  • Are Ethical Judgments Intrinsically Motivational? Lessons From "Acquired Sociopathy".Adina Roskies - 2003 - Philosophical Psychology 16 (1):51 – 66.
    Metaethical questions are typically held to be a priori , and therefore impervious to empirical evidence. Here I examine the metaethical claim that motive-internalism about belief , the position that moral beliefs are intrinsically motivating, is true. I argue that belief-internalists are faced with a dilemma. Either their formulation of internalism is so weak that it fails to be philosophically interesting, or it is a substantive claim but can be shown to be empirically false. I then provide evidence for the (...)
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  • Against Direction of Fit Accounts of Belief and Desire.David Sobel & Copp - 2001 - Analysis 61 (1):44-53.
    The authors argue against direction of fit accounts of the distinction between belief and desire.
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  • Expressivism and Dispositional Desires.Caj Strandberg - 2012 - American Philosophical Quarterly 49 (1):81-91.
    According to a persistent objection against metaethical expressivism, this view is committed to a strong version of internalism which is unable to account for cases where a person’s moral judgment and motivation come apart. Recently, leading expressivists have argued that they can meet this objection by maintaining that moral judgments consist in non-cognitive states that motivate in normal conditions. In this paper, it is maintained that an important dimension of internalism has, on the whole, gone unnoticed: Internalist claims vary depending (...)
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  • Thinking How to Live.D. O. Brink - 2007 - Philosophical Review 116 (2):267-272.
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  • Intention.P. L. Heath - 1960 - Philosophical Quarterly 10 (40):281.
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  • Moral Rationalism and Rational Amoralism.Mark van Roojen - 2010 - Ethics 120 (3):495–525.
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  • Normative Concepts and Motivation.François Schroeter - 2005 - Philosophers' Imprint 5:1-23.
    Philip Pettit, Michael Smith, and Tyler Burge have suggested that the similarities between theoretical and practical reasoning can bolster the case for judgment internalism – i.e. the claim that normative judgments are necessarily connected to motivation. In this paper, I first flesh out the rationale for this new approach to internalism. I then argue that even if there are reasons for thinking that internalism holds in the theoretical domain, these reasons don’t generalize to the practical domain.
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  • The Humean Theory of Motivation Reformulated and Defended.Neil Sinhababu - 2009 - Philosophical Review 118 (4):465-500.
    This essay defends a strong version of the Humean theory of motivation on which desire is necessary both for motivation and for reasoning that changes our desires. Those who hold that moral judgments are beliefs with intrinsic motivational force need to oppose this view, and many of them have proposed counterexamples to it. Using a novel account of desire, this essay handles the proposed counterexamples in a way that shows the superiority of the Humean theory. The essay addresses the classic (...)
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  • On the Very Idea of Direction of Fit.Kim Frost - 2014 - Philosophical Review 123 (4):429-484.
    Direction of fit theories usually claim that beliefs are such that they “aim at truth” or “ought to fit” the world and desires are such that they “aim at realization” or the world “ought to fit” them. This essay argues that no theory of direction of fit is correct. The two directions of fit are supposed to be determinations of one and the same determinable two-place relation, differing only in the ordering of favored terms. But there is no such determinable (...)
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  • The Metaethical Insignificance of Moral Twin Earth.Janice L. Dowell - 2016 - Oxford Studies in Metaethics 11.
    What considerations place genuine constraints on an adequate semantics for normative and evaluative expressions? Linguists recognize facts about ordinary uses of such expressions and competent speakers’ judgments about which uses are appropriate. The contemporary literature reflects the widespread assumption that linguists don’t rely upon an additional source of data—competent speakers’ judgments about possible disagreement with hypothetical speech communities. We have several good reasons to think that such judgments are not probative for semantic theorizing. Therefore, we should accord these judgments no (...)
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  • Moral Concepts and Motivation.Mark Greenberg - 2009 - Philosophical Perspectives 23 (1):137-164.
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  • Rationality Through Reasoning.John Broome - 2013 - Wiley-Blackwell.
    _Rationality Through Reasoning_ answers the question of how people are motivated to do what they believe they ought to do, built on a comprehensive account of normativity, rationality and reasoning that differs significantly from much existing philosophical thinking. Develops an original account of normativity, rationality and reasoning significantly different from the majority of existing philosophical thought Includes an account of theoretical and practical reasoning that explains how reasoning is something we ourselves do, rather than something that happens in us Gives (...)
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  • Psychopathy and Internalism.Victor Kumar - 2016 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 46 (3):318-345.
    Do psychopaths make moral judgments but lack motivation? Or are psychopaths’ judgments are not genuinely moral? Both sides of this debate seem to assume either externalist or internalist criteria for the presence of moral judgment. However, if moral judgment is a natural kind, we can arrive at a theory-neutral criterion for moral judgment. A leading naturalistic criterion suggests that psychopaths have an impaired capacity for moral judgment; the capacity is neither fully present nor fully absent. Psychopaths are therefore not counterexamples (...)
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  • Directions of Fit and the Humean Theory of Motivation.Mary Clayton Coleman - 2008 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 86 (1):127 – 139.
    According to the Humean theory of motivation, a person can only be motivated to act by a desire together with a relevantly related belief. More specifically, a person can only be motivated to ϕ by a desire to ψ together with a belief that ϕ-ing is a means to or a way of ψ-ing. In recent writings, Michael Smith gives what has become a very influential argument in favour of the Humean claim that desire is a necessary part of motivation, (...)
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  • What We Owe to Each Other.Thomas M. Scanlon - 2002 - Mind 111 (442):323-354.
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  • Sentimental Rules: On the Natural Foundations of Moral Judgment.Shaun Nichols - 2004 - Oxford University Press.
    Sentimental Rules is an ambitious and highly interdisciplinary work, which proposes and defends a new theory about the nature and evolution of moral judgment. In it, philosopher Shaun Nichols develops the theory that emotions play a critical role in both the psychological and the cultural underpinnings of basic moral judgment. Nichols argues that our norms prohibiting the harming of others are fundamentally associated with our emotional responses to those harms, and that such 'sentimental rules' enjoy an advantage in cultural evolution, (...)
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  • The Emotional Construction of Morals.Jesse Prinz - 2007 - Oxford University Press.
    Jesse Prinz argues that recent work in philosophy, neuroscience, and anthropology supports two radical hypotheses about the nature of morality: moral values are based on emotional responses, and these emotional responses are inculcated by culture, not hard-wired through natural selection. In the first half of the book, Jesse Prinz defends the hypothesis that morality has an emotional foundation. Evidence from brain imaging, social psychology, and psychopathology suggest that, when we judge something to be right or wrong, we are merely expressing (...)
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  • The Language of Morals.Brian F. Chellas - 1971 - Journal of Symbolic Logic 36 (1):180-181.
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  • The Moral Problem.James Lenman - 1994 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 1 (1):125-126.
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  • The Humean Theory of Motivation Rejected.G. F. Schueler - 2009 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 78 (1):103-122.
    In this paper I will argue that the latter group [of Non-Humeans] is correct. My argument focuses on practical deliberation and has two parts. I will discuss two different problems that arise for the Humean Theory and suggest that while taken individually each problem appears to have a solution, for each problem the solution Humeans offer precludes solving the other problem. I will suggest that to see these difficulties we must take seriously the thought that we can only understand an (...)
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  • The Externalist and the Amoralist.James Lenman - 1999 - Philosophia 27 (3-4):441-457.
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  • Moral Judgment Purposivism: Saving Internalism From Amoralism.M. S. Bedke - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 144 (2):189-209.
    Consider orthodox motivational judgment internalism: necessarily, A’s sincere moral judgment that he or she ought to φ motivates A to φ. Such principles fail because they cannot accommodate the amoralist, or one who renders moral judgments without any corresponding motivation. The orthodox alternative, externalism, posits only contingent relations between moral judgment and motivation. In response I first revive conceptual internalism by offering some modifications on the amoralist case to show that certain community-wide motivational failures are not conceptually possible. Second, I (...)
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  • How to Speak of the Colors.Mark Johnston - 1992 - Philosophical Studies 68 (3):221-263.
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  • The Moral Problem.[author unknown] - 1994 - Wiley.
    Chapter 5 contains a classic response to Williams. Smith does not disagree concerning the existence of external reasons, but about deliberation’s power to move us from our starting positions, and about the likely degree of convergence in deliberators’ conclusions about their own reasons.
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  • The Moral Problem.Michael Smith - 1994 - Blackwell.
    What is the Moral Problem? NORMATIVE ETHICS VS. META-ETHICS It is a common fact of everyday life that we appraise each others' behaviour and attitudes from ...
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  • The Humean Theory of Motivation Rejected.G. F. Schueler - 2009 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 78 (1):103-122.
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  • Freedom in Belief and Desire.Philip Pettit & Michael Smith - 1998 - In J. A. M. Bransen & S. E. Cuypers (eds.), Journal of Philosophy. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Publishers. pp. 89--112.
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  • Reason and the First Person.Tyler Burge - 1998 - In Crispin Wright, Barry C. Smith & Cynthia Macdonald (eds.), Knowing Our Own Minds. Oxford University Press.
    The first part of the paper focuses on the role played in thought and action by possession of the first‐person concept. It is argued that only one who possesses the I concept is in a position to fully articulate certain fundamental, a priori aspects of the concept of reason. A full understanding of the concept of reason requires being inclined to be affected or immediately motivated by reasons—to form, change or confirm beliefs or other attitudes in accordance with them—when those (...)
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  • Motivational Internalism: Contemporary Debates.Gunnar Björnsson, Caj Strandberg, Ragnar Francén Olinder, John Eriksson & Fredrik Björklund - 2015 - In Gunnar Björnsson, Caj Strandberg, Ragnar Francén Olinder, John Eriksson & Fredrik Björklund (eds.), Motivational Internalism. Oxford University Press. pp. 1–20.
    Motivational internalism—the idea that moral judgments are intrinsically or necessarily connected to motivation—has played a central role in metaethical debates. In conjunction with a Humean picture of motivation, internalism has provided a challenge for theories that take moral judgments to concern objective aspects of reality, and versions of internalism have been seen as having implications for moral absolutism, realism, and rationalism. But internalism is a controversial thesis, and the apparent possibility of amoralists and the rejection of strong forms of internalism (...)
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