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  1. Normativity.Judith Jarvis Thomson - 2007 - Oxford Studies in Metaethics 2:240-266.
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  • Reasons as Evidence.Stephen Kearns & Daniel Star - 2009 - Oxford Studies in Metaethics 4:215-42.
    In this paper, we argue for a particular informative and unified analysis of normative reasons. According to this analysis, a fact F is a reason to act in a certain way just in case it is evidence that one ought to act in that way. Similarly, F is a reason to believe a certain proposition just in case it is evidence for the truth of this proposition. Putting the relatively uncontroversial claim about reasons for belief to one side, we present (...)
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  • The Goals of Moral Worth.Nathan Robert Howard - forthcoming - Oxford Studies in Metaethics.
    While it is tempting to suppose that an act has moral worth just when and because it is motivated by sufficient moral reasons, philosophers have, largely, come to doubt this analysis. Doubt is rooted in two claims. The first is that some facts can motivate a given act in multiple ways, not all of which are consistent with moral worth. The second is the orthodox view that normative reasons are facts. I defend the tempting analysis by proposing and defending a (...)
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  • Moral Worth and Doing the Right Thing by Accident.Jessica Isserow - 2019 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 97 (2):251-264.
    ABSTRACTKantian conceptions of moral worth are thought to enjoy an advantage over their rivals in virtue of accommodating two plausible intuitions—that the praiseworthiness of an action is never ac...
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  • Moral Philosophy Meets Social Psychology: Virtue Ethics and the Fundamental Attribution Error.Gilbert Harman - 1999 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 99 (1999):315-331.
    Ordinary moral thought often commits what social psychologists call 'the fundamental attribution error '. This is the error of ignoring situational factors and overconfidently assuming that distinctive behaviour or patterns of behaviour are due to an agent's distinctive character traits. In fact, there is no evidence that people have character traits in the relevant sense. Since attribution of character traits leads to much evil, we should try to educate ourselves and others to stop doing it.
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  • Sentimentalism About Moral Understanding.Nathan Robert Howard - 2018 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 21 (5):1065-1078.
    Some have attempted to explain why it appears that action based on deferential moral belief lacks moral worth by appealing to claims about an attitude that is difficult to acquire through testimony, which theorists have called “moral understanding”. I argue that this state is at least partly non-cognitive. I begin by employing case-driven judgments to undermine the assumption that I argue is responsible for the strangeness of deferential moral belief: the assumption that if an agent knows that some fact gives (...)
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  • Three Cheers for Dispositions: A Dispositional Approach to Acting for a Normative Reason.Susanne Mantel - 2017 - Erkenntnis 82 (3):561-582.
    Agents sometimes act for normative reasons—for reasons that objectively favor their actions. Jill, for instance, calls a doctor for the normative reason that Kate is injured. In this article I explore a dispositional approach to acting for a normative reason. I argue for the need of epistemic, motivational, and executional dispositional elements of a theory of acting for a normative reason. Dispositions play a mediating role between, on the one hand, the normative reason and its normative force, and the action (...)
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  • Running Risks Morally.Brian Weatherson - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 167 (1):141-163.
    I defend normative externalism from the objection that it cannot account for the wrongfulness of moral recklessness. The defence is fairly simple—there is no wrong of moral recklessness. There is an intuitive argument by analogy that there should be a wrong of moral recklessness, and the bulk of the paper consists of a response to this analogy. A central part of my response is that if people were motivated to avoid moral recklessness, they would have to have an unpleasant sort (...)
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  • Knowledge and Its Limits.Timothy Williamson - 2000 - Philosophy 76 (297):460-464.
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  • Dispositions and Fetishes: Externalist Models of Moral Motivation.James Dreier - 2000 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 61 (3):619-638.
    Internalism says that if an agent judges that it is right for her to φ, then she is motivated to φ. The disagreement between Internalists and Externalists runs deep, and it lingers even in the face of clever intuition pumps. An argument in Michael Smith’s The Moral Problem seeks some leverage against Externalism from a point within normative theory. Smith argues by dilemma: Externalists either fail to explain why motivation tracks moral judgment in a good moral agent or they attribute (...)
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  • De Dicto Desires and Morality as Fetish.Vanessa Carbonell - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 163 (2):459-477.
    Abstract It would be puzzling if the morally best agents were not so good after all. Yet one prominent account of the morally best agents ascribes to them the exact motivational defect that has famously been called a “fetish.” The supposed defect is a desire to do the right thing, where this is read de dicto . If the morally best agents really are driven by this de dicto desire, and if this de dicto desire is really a fetish, then (...)
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  • Normativity.J. J. Thomson - 2008 - Analysis 70 (4):713-715.
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  • Slaves of the Passions.Mark Schroeder - 2009 - Analysis 69 (3):574-576.
    Like much in this book, the title and dust jacket illustration are clever. The first evokes Hume's remark in the Treatise that ‘Reason is, and ought only to be the slave of the passions.’ The second, which represents a cross between a dance-step and a clinch, links up with the title and anticipates an example used throughout the book to support its central claims: that Ronnie, unlike Bradley, has a reason to go to a party – namely, that there will (...)
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  • You Ought to Φ Only If You May Believe That You Ought to Φ.Benjamin Kiesewetter - 2016 - Philosophical Quarterly 66 (265):760-82.
    In this paper I present an argument for the claim that you ought to do something only if you may believe that you ought to do it. More exactly, I defend the following principle about normative reasons: An agent A has decisive reason to φ only if she also has sufficient reason to believe that she has decisive reason to φ. I argue that this principle follows from the plausible assumption that it must be possible for an agent to respond (...)
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  • Reasons: Explanations or Evidence.Stephen Kearns & Daniel Star - 2008 - Ethics 119 (1):31-56.
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  • Prime Time (for the Basing Relation).Kurt Sylvan & Errol Lord - forthcoming - In J. Adam Carter & Patrick Bondy (eds.), Well Founded Belief: New Essays on the Epistemic Basing Relation.
    It is often assumed that believing that p for a normative reason consists in nothing more than (i) believing that p for a reason and (ii) that reason’s corresponding to a normative reason to believe that p, where (i) and (ii) are independent factors. This is the Composite View. In this paper, we argue against the Composite View on extensional and theoretical grounds. We advocate an alternative that we call the Prime View. On this view, believing for a normative reason (...)
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  • Dispositions and Fetishes: Externalist Models of Moral Motivation.James Dreier - 2000 - Philosophical and Phenomenological Research 61 (3):619-638.
    Internalism says that if an agent judges that it is right for her to φ, then she is motivated to φ. The disagreement between Internalists and Externalists runs deep, and it lingers even in the face of clever intuition pumps. An argument in Michael Smith's The Moral Problem seeks some leverage against Externalism from a point within normative theory. Smith argues by dilemma: Externalists either fail to explain why motivation tracks moral judgment in a good moral agent or they attribute (...)
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  • Knowledge and its Limits.Timothy Williamson - 2000 - Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 64 (1):200-201.
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  • One Thought Too Few: Where De Dicto Moral Motivation is Necessary.Ron Aboodi - 2017 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 20 (2):223-237.
    De dicto moral motivation is typically characterized by the agent’s conceiving of her goal in thin normative terms such as to do what is right. I argue that lacking an effective de dicto moral motivation would put the agent in a bad position for responding in the morally-best manner in a certain type of situations. Two central features of the relevant type of situations are the appropriateness of the agent’s uncertainty concerning her underived moral values, and the practical, moral importance (...)
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  • Perspectivism and the Argument From Guidance.Jonathan Way & Daniel Whiting - 2017 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 20 (2):361-374.
    Perspectivists hold that what you ought to do is determined by your perspective, that is, your epistemic position. Objectivists hold that what you ought to do is determined by the facts irrespective of your perspective. This paper explores an influential argument for perspectivism which appeals to the thought that the normative is action guiding. The crucial premise of the argument is that you ought to φ only if you are able to φ for the reasons which determine that you ought (...)
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  • Actions, Reasons, and Causes.Donald Davidson - 1963 - Journal of Philosophy 60 (23):685.
    What is the relation between a reason and an action when the reason explains the action by giving the agent's reason for doing what he did? We may call such explanations rationalizations, and say that the reason rationalizes the action. In this paper I want to defend the ancient - and common-sense - position that rationalization is a species of ordinary causal explanation. The defense no doubt requires some redeployment, but not more or less complete abandonment of the position, as (...)
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  • The Conscience of Huckleberry Finn.Jonathan Bennett - 1974 - Philosophy 49 (188):123-134.
    In this paper1 I shall present not just the conscience of Huckleberry Finn but two others as well. One of them is the conscience of Heinrich Himmler. He became a Nazi in 1923; he served drably and quietly, but well, and was rewarded with increasing responsibility and power. At the peak of his career he held many offices and commands, of which the most powerful was that of leader of the S.S. - the principal police force of the Nazi regime. (...)
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  • Kant, Nonaccidentalness and the Availability of Moral Worth.Steven Sverdlik - 2001 - The Journal of Ethics 5 (4):293-313.
    Contemporary Kantians who defend Kant''s view of the superiority of the sense of duty as a form of motivation appeal to various ideas. Some say, if only implicitly, that the sense of duty is always ``available'''' to an agent, when she has a moral obligation. Some, like Barbara Herman, say that the sense of duty provides a ``nonaccidental'''' connection between an agent''s motivation and the act''s rightness. In this paper I show that the ``availability'''' and ``nonaccidentalness'''' arguments are in tension (...)
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  • Unprincipled Virtue: An Inquiry Into Moral Agency.Nomy Arpaly - 2002 - Oxford University Press.
    Nomy Arpaly rejects the model of rationality used by most ethicists and action theorists. Both observation and psychology indicate that people act rationally without deliberation, and act irrationally with deliberation. By questioning the notion that our own minds are comprehensible to us--and therefore questioning much of the current work of action theorists and ethicists--Arpaly attempts to develop a more realistic conception of moral agency.
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  • Persons, Character, and Morality.Bernard Williams - 1998 - In James Rachels (ed.), Ethical Theory 2: Theories About How We Should Live. Oxford University Press.
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  • How Reasons Are Sensitive to Available Evidence.Benjamin Kiesewetter - 2018 - In Conor McHugh, Jonathan Way & Daniel Whiting (eds.), Normativity: Epistemic and Practical. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 90-114.
    In this paper, I develop a theory of how claims about an agent’s normative reasons are sensitive to the epistemic circumstances of this agent, which preserves the plausible ideas that reasons are facts and that reasons can be discovered in deliberation and disclosed in advice. I argue that a plausible theory of this kind must take into account the difference between synchronic and diachronic reasons, i.e. reasons for acting immediately and reasons for acting at some later point in time. I (...)
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  • Praise Without Perfection: A Dilemma for Right-Making Reasons.Paulina Sliwa - 2015 - American Philosophical Quarterly 52 (2).
    When you don’t know what to do, you’d better find out. Sometimes the best way to find out is to ask for advice. And when you don’t know what the right thing to do is, it’s sometimes good to rely on moral advice. This straightforward thought spells serious trouble for a popular and widespread approach to moral worth: on this approach, agents deserve moral praise for a right action only if they are acting on right-making reasons. The first part of (...)
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  • Accidentally Doing the Right Thing.Zoe Johnson King - 2020 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 100 (1):186-206.
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, EarlyView.
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  • Moral Worth and Normative Ethics.Arpaly Nomy - 2015 - Oxford Studies in Normative Ethics 5.
    According to Arpaly and to Markovits, actions have moral worth iff they are done for the reasons that make them right. Can this view have implications for normative ethics? I argue that it has such implications, as you can start from truths about the moral worth of actions to truths about the reasons that make them right. What makes actions right is the question of normative ethics. I argue from the moral worth view to a pluralistic view of ethics - (...)
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  • Two Levels of Moral Thinking.Daniel Star - 2011 - Oxford Studies in Normative Ethics 1:75-96.
    The purpose of this paper is to introduce a two level account of moral thinking that, unlike other accounts, does justice to three very plausible propositions that seem to form an inconsistent triad: (1) People can be morally virtuous without the aid of philosophy. (2) Morally virtuous people non-accidentally act for good reasons, and work out what it is that they ought to do on the basis of considering such reasons. (3) Philosophers engaged in the project of normative ethics are (...)
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  • Virtue Theory.Julia Driver - 2006 - In James Lawrence Dreier (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Moral Theory. Blackwell.
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  • Moral Understanding as Knowing Right From Wrong.Paulina Sliwa - 2017 - Ethics 127 (3):521-552.
    Moral understanding is a valuable epistemic and moral good. I argue that moral understanding is the ability to know right from wrong. I defend the account against challenges from nonreductionists, such as Alison Hills, who argue that moral understanding is distinct from moral knowledge. Moral understanding, she suggests, is constituted by a set of abilities: to give and follow moral explanations and to draw moral conclusions. I argue that Hills’s account rests on too narrow a conception of moral understanding. Among (...)
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  • Moral Testimony and Moral Epistemology.Alison Hills - 2009 - Ethics 120 (1):94-127.
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  • Acting for the Right Reasons.Julia Markovits - 2010 - Philosophical Review 119 (2):201-242.
    This essay examines the thought that our right actions have moral worth only if we perform them for the right reasons. It argues against the view, often ascribed to Kant, that morally worthy actions must be performed because they are right and argues that Kantians and others ought instead to accept the view that morally worthy actions are those performed for the reasons why they are right. In other words, morally worthy actions are those for which the reasons why they (...)
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  • On the Value of Acting From the Motive of Duty.Barbara Herman - 1981 - Philosophical Review 90 (3):359-382.
    Richard Henson attempts to take the sting out of this view of Kant on moral worth by arguing (i) that attending to the phenomenon of the overdetermination of actions leads one to see that Kant might have had two distinct views of moral worth, only one of which requires the absence of cooperating inclinations, and (ii) that when Kant insists that there is moral worth only when an action is done from the motive of duty alone, he need not also (...)
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  • The Moral Problem.Stephen Darwall - 1996 - Philosophical Quarterly 46 (185):508-515.
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  • "Ought" and the Perspective of the Agent.Benjamin Kiesewitter - 2011 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 5 (3):1-24.
    Objectivists and perspectivists disagree about the question of whether what an agent ought to do depends on the totality of facts or on the agent’s limited epistemic perspective. While objectivism fails to account for normative guidance, perspectivism faces the challenge of explaining phenomena (occurring most notably in advice, but also in first-personal deliberation) in which the use of “ought” is geared to evidence that is better than the evidence currently available to the agent. This paper aims to defend perspectivism by (...)
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  • Unprincipled Virtue. [REVIEW]Manuel Vargas - 2003 - The Journal of Ethics 8 (2):201-204.
    Nomy Arpaly rejects the model of rationality used by most ethicists and action theorists. Both observation and psychology indicate that people act rationally without deliberation, and act irrationally with deliberation. By questioning the notion that our own minds are comprehensible to us--and therefore questioning much of the current work of action theorists and ethicists--Arpaly attempts to develop a more realistic conception of moral agency.
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  • In Defense of Objectivism About Moral Obligation.Peter A. Graham - 2010 - Ethics 121 (1):88-115.
    There is a debate in normative ethics about whether or not our moral obligations depend solely on either our evidence concerning, or our beliefs about, the world. Subjectivists maintain that they do and objectivists maintain that they do not. I shall offer some arguments in support of objectivism and respond to the strongest argument for subjectivism. I shall also briefly consider the significance of my discussion to the debate over whether one’s future voluntary actions are relevant to one’s current moral (...)
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  • The Realm of Rights.Carl Wellman - 1992 - Journal of Philosophy 89 (6):326-329.
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  • Moral Worth.Nomy Arpaly - 2002 - Journal of Philosophy 99 (5):223.
    I argue that a right action has moral worth if and only if it is done for the right reasons - that is, for its right-making features. The reasons the agent acts on have to be identical to the reasons for which the action is right. I argue that Kantians are wrong in thinking that a right action has moral worth iff it is done because the agent thinks it is right, giving examples of morally worthy actions that are done (...)
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  • The Alleged Moral Repugnance of Acting From Duty.Marcia Baron - 1984 - Journal of Philosophy 81 (4):197-220.
    Friends as well as foes of Kant have long been uneasy over his emphasis on duty, but lately the view that there is something morally repugnant about acting from duty seems to be gaining in popularity. More and more philosophers indicate their readiness to jettison duty and the moral 'ought' and to conceive of the perfectly moral person as someone who has all the right desires and acts accordingly without any notion that (s)he ought to act in this way. Elsewhere' (...)
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  • Being More Realistic About Reasons: On Rationality and Reasons Perspectivism.Clayton Littlejohn - 2019 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 99 (3):605-627.
    This paper looks at whether it is possible to unify the requirements of rationality with the demands of normative reasons. It might seem impossible to do because one depends upon the agent’s perspective and the other upon features of the situation. Enter Reasons Perspectivism. Reasons perspectivists think they can show that rationality does consist in responding correctly to reasons by placing epistemic constraints on these reasons. They think that if normative reasons are subject to the right epistemic constraints, rational requirements (...)
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  • Moral Knowledge, Epistemic Externalism, and Intuitionism.Daniel Star - 2008 - Ratio 21 (3):329-343.
    This paper explores the generally overlooked relevance of an important contemporary debate in mainstream epistemology to philosophers working within ethics on questions concerning moral knowledge. It is argued that this debate, between internalists and externalists about the accessibility of epistemic justification, has the potential to be both significantly influenced by, and have a significant impact upon, the study of moral knowledge. The moral sphere provides a particular type of strong evidence in favour of externalism, and mainstream epistemologists might benefit from (...)
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  • Creditworthiness and Matching Principles.Jonathan Way - forthcoming - In Mark Timmons (ed.), Oxford Studies in Normative Ethics, Vol 7. Oxford University Press.
    You are creditworthy for φ-ing only if φ-ing is the right thing to do. Famously though, further conditions are needed too – Kant’s shopkeeper did the right thing, but is not creditworthy for doing so. This case shows that creditworthiness requires that there be a certain kind of explanation of why you did the right thing. The reasons for which you act – your motivating reasons – must meet some further conditions. In this paper, I defend a new account of (...)
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  • Kantian Ethics Almost Without Apology.Marcia W. Baron & Henry E. Allison - 1998 - Philosophical Quarterly 48 (191):269-274.
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  • Getting a Thing Into a Thought.Kent Bach - 2010 - In Robin Jeshion (ed.), New Essays on Singular Thought. Oxford University Press. pp. 39.
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  • Moral Worth and Moral Knowledge.Paulina Sliwa - 2016 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 93 (2):393-418.
    To have moral worth an action not only needs to conform to the correct normative theory ; it also needs to be motivated in the right way. I argue that morally worthy actions are motivated by the rightness of the action; they are motivated by an agent's concern for doing what's right and her knowledge that her action is morally right. Call this the Rightness Condition. On the Rightness Condition moral motivation involves both a conative and a cognitive element—in particular, (...)
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  • Virtuous Act, Virtuous Dispositions.Thomas Hurka - 2006 - Analysis 66 (1):69-76.
    Everyday moral thought uses the concepts of virtue and vice at two different levels. At what I will call a global level it applies these concepts to persons or to stable character traits or dispositions. Thus we may say that a person is brave or has a standing trait of generosity or malice. But we also apply these concepts more locally, to specific acts or mental states such as occurrent desires or feelings. Thus we may say that a particular act (...)
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  • Many Faces of Virtue.Thomas Hurka - 2014 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 89 (2):496-503.
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