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  1. 'Ought' and Ability.P. A. Graham & Peter Graham - 2011 - Philosophical Review 120 (3):337-382.
    A principle that many have found attractive is one that goes by the name “'Ought' Implies 'Can'.” According to this principle, one morally ought to do something only if one can do it. This essay has two goals: to show that the principle is false and to undermine the motivations that have been offered for it. Toward the end, a proposal about moral obligation according to which something like a restricted version of 'Ought' Implies 'Can' is true is floated. Though (...)
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  • Ought Implies Can and Deontic Logic.Norman O. Dahl - 1974 - Philosophia 4 (4):485-511.
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  • An Empirical Refutation of ‘Ought’ Implies ‘Can’.Paul Henne, Vladimir Chituc, Felipe De Brigard & Walter Sinnott-Armstrong - 2016 - Analysis 76 (3):283-290.
    Most philosophers assume that ‘ought’ implies ‘can’, and most of them hold that this principle is true not only universally but also analytically or conceptually. Some skeptics deny this principle, although they often admit some related one. In this article, we show how new empirical evidence bolsters the skeptics’ arguments. We then defend the skeptical view against some objections to the empirical evidence and to its effect on the traditional principle. In light of the new evidence, we conclude that philosophers (...)
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  • “‘Ought’ Implies ‘Can’” and the Scope of Moral Requirements.Terrance McConnell - 1989 - Philosophia 19 (4):437-454.
    This paper examines two contexts in ethical theory that some have thought support the claim that attempts, rather than actions, are what are morally required of agents. In each context there is an appeal to the principle that 'ought' implies 'can'. I begin by explaining how I think appeals to this principle typically work. I conclude that not only do the contexts in question not demonstrate that moral requirements range over attempts, but also that any argument in support of that (...)
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  • Moral Laws, Laws of Nature and Dispositions.Danny Frederick - 2014 - Prolegomena: Journal of Philosophy 13 (2):303-14.
    It appears that light may be thrown on the nature of moral principles if they are construed as moral laws analogous to ceteris-paribus laws of nature. Luke Robinson objects that the analogy either cannot explain how moral principles are necessary or cannot explain how obligations can be pro-tanto; and that a dispositional account of moral obligation has explanatory superiority over one in terms of moral laws. I explain the analogy, construing laws of nature as necessary relationships after the fashion of (...)
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  • Reasons and Impossibility.Bart Streumer - 2007 - Philosophical Studies 136 (3):351-384.
    Many philosophers claim that it cannot be the case that a person ought to perform an action if this person cannot perform this action. However, most of these philosophers do not give arguments for the truth of this claim. In this paper, I argue that it is plausible to interpret this claim in such a way that it is entailed by the claim that there cannot be a reason for a person to perform an action if it is impossible that (...)
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  • Impossible Obligations Are Not Necessarily Deliberatively Pointless.Christopher Jay - 2013 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 113 (3pt3):381-389.
    Many philosophers accept that ought implies can (OIC), but it is not obvious that we have a good argument for that principle. I consider one sort of argument for it, which seems to be a development of an Aristotelian idea about practical deliberation and which is endorsed by, amongst others, R. M. Hare and James Griffin. After briefly rehearsing some well-known objections to that sort of argument (which is based on the supposed pointlessness of impossible obligations), I present a further (...)
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  • Guilt, Regret and Prima Facie Duties.Mark Strasser - 1987 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 25 (1):133-146.
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  • Guilt, Regret, and Prima Facie Duties.Mark Strasser - 1987 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 25 (1):133-146.
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  • Duty and Ignorance.Ramon M. Lemos - 1980 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 18 (3):301-312.
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  • Duty and Ignorance.Ramon M. Lemos - 1980 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 18 (3):301-312.
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  • “Ought Implies Can” and the Price of Duty.Rita C. Manning - 1981 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 19 (1):117-121.
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  • “Ought Implies Can” and the Price of Duty.Rita C. Manning - 1981 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 19 (1):117-121.
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  • “‘Ought’ Does Imply ‘Can’“.Steve F. Sapontzis - 1991 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 29 (3):382-393.
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  • Subjective and Objective Justification in Ethics and Epistemology.Richard Feldman - 1988 - The Monist 71 (3):405-419.
    A view widely held by epistemologists is that there is a distinction between subjective and objective epistemic justification, analogous to the commonly drawn distinction between subjective and objective justification in ethics. Richard Brandt offers a clear statement of this line of thought.
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  • Persons and Punishment.Herbert Morris - 1968 - The Monist 52 (4):475-501.
    Alfredo Traps in Durrenmatt’s tale discovers that he has brought off, all by himself, a murder involving considerable ingenuity. The mock prosecutor in the tale demands the death penalty “as reward for a crime that merits admiration, astonishment, and respect.” Traps is deeply moved; indeed, he is exhilarated, and the whole of his life becomes more heroic, and, ironically, more precious. His defense attorney proceeds to argue that Traps was not only innocent but incapable of guilt, “a victim of the (...)
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  • With Virtue for All: Against the Democratic Theory of Virtue.Eugene Schlossberger - 1989 - Southwest Philosophy Review 5 (1):71-76.
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  • With Virtue for All: Against the Democratic Theory of Virtue.Eugene Schlossberger - 1989 - Southwest Philosophy Review 5 (1):71-76.
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  • Ethical and Political Thinking.E. F. Carritt - 1947 - Modern Schoolman 26 (3):261-263.
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  • The Realm of Rights.Judith Jarvis Thomson - 1990 - Harvard University Press.
    In The Realm of Rights Judith Thomson provides a full-scale, systematic theory of human and social rights, bringing out what in general makes an attribution of ...
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  • The Right and the Good.Some Problems in Ethics.W. D. Ross & H. W. B. Joseph - 1933 - Journal of Philosophy 30 (19):517-527.
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  • Moral Practices.Onora Nell - 1972 - Journal of Philosophy 69 (9):257-260.
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  • Absolutist Moral Theories and Uncertainty.Frank Jackson & Michael Smith - 2006 - Journal of Philosophy 103 (6):267-283.
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  • Is It Reasonable to Regret Things One Did?Rudiger Bittner - 1992 - Journal of Philosophy 89 (5):262-273.
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  • Is It Reasonable to Regret Things One Did?Rudiger Bittner - 1992 - Journal of Philosophy 89 (5):262.
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  • Consistency in Rationalist Moral Systems.Alan Donagan - 1984 - Journal of Philosophy 81 (6):291-309.
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  • Consistency in Rationalist Moral Systems.Alan Donagan - 1984 - Journal of Philosophy 81 (6):291.
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  • The Realm of Rights.Carl Wellman - 1992 - Journal of Philosophy 89 (6):326-329.
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  • Moral Dilemmas and Consistency.Ruth Barcan Marcus - 1980 - Journal of Philosophy 77 (3):121-136.
    Marcus argues that moral dilemmas are real, but that they are not the result of inconsistent moral principles. Moral principles are consistent just in case there is some world where all principles are 'obeyable.' They are inconsistent just in case there is no world where all are 'obeyable.' What this logical point is meant to show is that moral dilemmas do not make moral codes inconsistent. She also discusses guilt, and argues that guilt is still appropriate even in cases of (...)
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  • Values and the Heart's Command.Bas C. Van Fraassen - 1973 - Journal of Philosophy 70 (1):5-19.
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  • Moral Realism and Moral Dilemma.Philippa Foot - 1983 - Journal of Philosophy 80 (7):379-398.
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  • The Phenomenology of Moral Experience.MAURICE MANDELBAUM - 1955 - Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
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  • The Limits of Morality.Shelly Kagan - 1989 - Oxford University Press.
    Most people believe that there are limits to the sacrifices that morality can demand. Although it would often be meritorious, we are not, in fact, morally required to do all that we can to promote overall good. What's more, most people also believe that certain types of acts are simply forbidden, morally off limits, even when necessary for promoting the overall good. In this provocative analysis Kagan maintains that despite the intuitive appeal of these views, they cannot be adequately defended. (...)
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  • Ought-Implies-Can: Erasmus Luther and R.M. Hare.Charles R. Pigden - 1990 - Sophia 29 (1):2-30.
    l. There is an antinomy in Hare's thought between Ought-Implies-Can and No-Indicatives-from-Imperatives. It cannot be resolved by drawing a distinction between implication and entailment. 2. Luther resolved this antinomy in the l6th century, but to understand his solution, we need to understand his problem. He thought the necessity of Divine foreknowledge removed contingency from human acts, thus making it impossible for sinners to do otherwise than sin. 3. Erasmus objected (on behalf of Free Will) that this violates Ought-Implies-Can which he (...)
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  • Moral Rights and the Limits of the Ought‐Implies‐Can Principle: Why Impeccable Precautions Are No Excuse.Matthew H. Kramer - 2005 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 48 (4):307 – 355.
    This essay argues against the commonly held view that "ought" implies "can" in the domain of morality. More specifically, I contest the notion that nobody should ever be held morally responsible for failing to avoid the infliction of any harm that he or she has not been able to avoid through all reasonably feasible precautions in the carrying out of some worthwhile activity. The article explicates the concept of a moral right in order to show why violations of moral rights (...)
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  • Moral Dilemmas and Consistency in Ethics.Terrance C. Mcconnell - 1978 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 8 (2):269 - 287.
    A moral dilemma is a situation in which an agent ought to do each of two actions, Both of which he cannot do. If there are genuine moral dilemmas, The ethical theorist is presented with a problem: he must reject several very plausible principles of standard deontic logic. The main reasons usually given to show that there are moral dilemmas are examined, And it is argued that they are not sufficient. Several positive arguments are then presented, Arguments which try to (...)
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  • Ethical Idealism: An Inquiry Into the Nature and Function of Ideals.Nicholas Rescher - 1987 - University of California Press.
    Is it rational to strive for the unattainable? In this short and provocative study, Nicholas Rescher vigorously defends both the rationality and practicality of seriously pursuing impossible dreams.
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  • Deontic Logic and the Logic of Imperatives.Edward J. Lemmon - 1965 - Logique Et Analyse 8 (29):39-61.
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  • Making Sense of Freedom and Responsibility.Dana Kay Nelkin - 2011 - Oxford University Press.
    Nelkin presents a simple and natural account of freedom and moral responsibility which responds to the great variety of challenges to the idea that we are free and responsible, before ultimately reaffirming our conception of ourselves as agents. Making Sense of Freedom and Responsibility begins with a defense of the rational abilities view, according to which one is responsible for an action if and only if one acts with the ability to recognize and act for good reasons. The view is (...)
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  • Ethical Consistency.B. A. O. Williams & W. F. Atkinson - 1965 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 39 (1):103-138.
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  • Doing the Best We Can: An Essay in Informal Deontic Logic.Fred Feldman - 1986 - D. Reidel Publishing Company.
    Several years ago I came across a marvelous little paper in which Hector-Neri Castaneda shows that standard versions of act utilitarian l ism are formally incoherent. I was intrigued by his argument. It had long seemed to me that I had a firm grasp on act utilitarianism. Indeed, it had often seemed to me that it was the clearest and most attractive of normative theories. Yet here was a simple and relatively uncontrover sial argument that showed, with only some trivial (...)
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  • Moral Dilemmas, Collective Responsibility, and Moral Progress.Patricia Marino - 2001 - Philosophical Studies 104 (2):203 - 225.
    Ruth Marcus has offered an account of moral dilemmas in which the presence of dilemmas acts as a motivating force, pushing us to try to minimize predicaments of moral conflict. In this paper, I defend a Marcus-style account of dilemmas against two objections: first, that if dilemmas are real, we are forced to blame those who have done their best, and second, that in some cases, even a stripped down version of blame seems inappropriate. My account highlights the importance of (...)
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  • Problems of Moral Philosophy an Introduction to Ethics.Paul W. Taylor - 1967 - Dickenson Pub. Co.
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  • Deontic Morality and Control.Ishtiyaque Haji - 2002 - Cambridge University Press.
    This book addresses a dilemma concerning freedom and moral obligation. If determinism is true, then no one has control over one's actions. If indeterminism is true, then no one has control over their actions. But it is morally obligatory, right or wrong for one to perform some action only if one has control over it. Hence, no one ever performs an action that is morally obligatory, right or wrong. The author defends the view that this dilemma can be evaded but (...)
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  • The Concept of Moral Obligation.Michael J. Zimmerman - 1996 - Cambridge University Press.
    The principal aim of this book is to develop and defend an analysis of the concept of moral obligation. The analysis is neutral regarding competing substantive theories of obligation, whether consequentialist or deontological in character. What it seeks to do is generate solutions to a range of philosophical problems concerning obligation and its application. Amongst these problems are deontic paradoxes, the supersession of obligation, conditional obligation, prima facie obligation, actualism and possibilism, dilemmas, supererogation, and cooperation. By virtue of its normative (...)
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  • Freedom, Responsibility, and God.Robert Young - 1975 - Macmillan.
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  • Modal Thinking.Alan R. White - 1975 - Cornell University Press.
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  • Rights, Restitution, and Risk: Essays, in Moral Theory.Judith Jarvis Thomson - 1986 - Harvard University Press.
    She is a philosophical analyst of the highest caliber who can tease a multitude of implications out of the story of a mere bit of eavesdropping.
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  • Moral Dilemmas.Walter Sinnott-Armstrong - 1988 - Blackwell.
    A strong tradition in philosophy denies the possibility of moral dilemmas. Recently, several philosophers reversed this tradition. In this dissertation, I clarify some fundamental issues in this debate, argue for the possibility of moral dilemmas, and determine some implications of this possibility. ;In chapter I, I define moral dilemmas roughly as situations where an agent morally ought to adopt each of two alternatives but cannot adopt both. Moral dilemmas are resolvable if and only if one of the moral oughts overrides (...)
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  • Playing by the Rules: A Philosophical Examination of Rule-Based Decision-Making in Law and in Life.Frederick Schauer - 1991 - Oxford University Press.
    Rules are a central component of such diverse enterprises as law, morality, language, games, religion, etiquette, and family governance, but there is often confusion about what a rule is, and what rules do. Offering a comprehensive philosophical analysis of these questions, this book challenges much of the existing legal, jurisprudential, and philosophical literature, by seeing a significant role for rules, an equally significant role for their stricter operation, and making the case for rules as devices for the allocation of power (...)
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