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  1. Jeff Behrends (2013). Meta‐Normative Realism, Evolution, and Our Reasons to Survive. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 94 (4):486-502.
    In this article, I articulate and respond to an epistemological challenge to meta-normative realism. The challenge has it that, if realism about the normative is correct, and if evolutionary forces have significantly influenced our normative judgments, then it would be a remarkable coincidence if the content of the normative facts and our normative judgments were aligned. I criticize David Enoch's recent attempt to meet this challenge, but provide an alternative response that is structurally similar. I argue that if realism is (...)
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  2. Selim Berker, The Unity of Grounding.
    I argue that there is one and only one grounding/in-virtue-of relation, and that it is indispensable for normative theorizing.
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  3. Justin Clarke-Doane (2012). Morality and Mathematics: The Evolutionary Challenge. Ethics 122 (2):313-340.
    It is commonly suggested that evolutionary considerations generate an epistemological challenge for moral realism. At first approximation, the challenge for the moral realist is to explain our having many true moral beliefs, given that those beliefs are the products of evolutionary forces that would be indifferent to the moral truth. An important question surrounding this challenge is the extent to which it generalizes. In particular, it is of interest whether the Evolutionary Challenge for moral realism is equally a challenge for (...)
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  4. Brendan Cline (forthcoming). Against Deliberative Indispensability as an Independent Guide to What There Is. Philosophical Studies:1-20.
    David Enoch has recently proposed that the deliberative indispensability of irreducibly normative facts suffices to support their inclusion in our ontology, even if they are not necessary for the explanation of any observable phenomena. He challenges dissenters to point to a relevant asymmetry between explanation and deliberation that shows why explanatory indispensability, but not deliberative indispensability, is a legitimate guide to ontology. In this paper, I aim to do just that. Given that an entity figures in the actual explanation of (...)
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  5. Brendan Cline (2015). Moral Explanations, Thick and Thin. Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 9 (2):1-20.
    Cornell realists maintain that irreducible moral properties have earned a place in our ontology in virtue of the indispensable role they play in a variety of explanations. These explanations can be divided into two groups: those that employ thin ethical concepts and those that employ thick ethical concepts. Recent work on thick concepts suggests that they are not inherently evaluative in their meaning. If correct, this creates problems for the moral explanations of Cornell realists, since the most persuasive moral explanations (...)
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  6. Terence Cuneo (2006). Moral Facts as Configuring Causes. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 87 (2):141–162.
    The overarching aim of this essay is to argue that moral realists should be "causalists" or claim that moral facts of certain kinds are causally efficacious. To this end, I engage in two tasks. The first is to develop an account of the sense in which moral facts of certain kinds are causally efficacious. After having sketched the concept of what I call a "configuring" cause, I contend that the exercise of the moral virtues is plausibly viewed as a configuring (...)
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  7. Aaron Elliott (2014). Can Moral Principles Explain Supervenience? Res Philosophica 91 (4):629-659.
    The distribution of moral properties supervenes on the distribution of natural properties, and this provides a puzzle for non-naturalism: what could explain supervenience if moral properties are not natural properties? Enoch claims moral principles explain supervenience. But this solution is incomplete without an account of what moral principles and properties are, and what relation holds between them. This paper begins to develop such an account by exploring analogous issues for Realism about Laws of nature in philosophy of science. Appealing to (...)
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  8. David Enoch (2010). How Objectivity Matters. Oxford Studies in Metaethics 5:111-52.
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  9. Harold T. Hodes, Moral Explanation. Morality, Reason and Truth.
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  10. Brad Majors (2007). Moral Explanation. Philosophy Compass 2 (1):1–15.
    Discussion of moral explanation has reached an impasse, with proponents of contemporary ethical naturalism upholding the explanatory integrity of moral facts and properties, and opponents--including both antirealists and non-naturalistic realists--insisting that such robustly explanatory pretensions as moral theory has be explained away. I propose that the key to solving the problem lies in the question whether instances of moral properties are causally efficacious. It is argued that, given the truth of contemporary ethical naturalism, moral properties are causally efficacious if the (...)
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  11. Charles Sayward (1989). Do Moral Explanations Matter? Philosophy Research Archives 14:137-142.
    Nicholas Sturgeon has claimed that moral explanations constitute one area of disagreement between moral realists and noncognitivists. He claims that the correctness of such explanation is consistent with moral realism but not with noncognitivism. Does this difference characterize all other anti-realist views. This paper argues that it does not. Moral relativism is a distinct anti-realist view. And the correctness of moral explanation is consistent with moral relativism.
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  12. Neil Sinclair (2013). Moral Explanations. In Hugh LaFollette (ed.), International Encyclopedia of Ethics. Blackwell
    "The arc of the moral universe is long but it bends towards justice." (Martin Luther King) -/- A moral explanation is an explanation of a particular or type of event (or fact or state of affairs) that features moral terms in the explaining phrase. Here are some examples. First, one way of the above quote is as the claim that, in the broad sweep of history, societies tend toward more just institutions, and that they do so precisely because these institutions (...)
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  13. Neil Sinclair (2011). The Explanationist Argument for Moral Realism. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 41 (1):1-24.
    In this paper I argue that the explanationist argument in favour of moral realism fails. According to this argument, the ability of putative moral properties to feature in good explanations provides strong evidence for, or entails, the metaphysical claims of moral realism. Some have rejected this argument by denying that moral explanations are ever good explanations. My criticism is different. I argue that even if we accept that moral explanations are (sometimes) good explanations the metaphysical claims of realism do not (...)
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  14. Neil Sinclair (2006). Two Kinds of Naturalism in Ethics. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 9 (4):417 - 439.
    What are the conditions on a successful naturalistic account of moral properties? In this paper I discuss one such condition: the possibility of moral concepts playing a role in good empirical theories on a par with those of the natural and social sciences. I argue that Peter Railton’s influential account of moral rightness fails to meet this condition, and thus is only viable in the hands of a naturalist who doesn’t insist on it. This conclusion generalises to all versions of (...)
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  15. David Slutsky (2001). Causally Inefficacious Moral Properties. Southern Journal of Philosophy 39 (4):595-610.
    In this paper, I motivate skepticism about the causal efficacy of moral properties in two ways. First, I highlight a tension that arises between two claims that moral realists may want to accept. The first claim is that physically indistinguishable things do not differ in any causally efficacious respect. The second claim is that physically indistinguishable things that differ in certain historical respects have different moral properties. The tension arises to the extent to which these different moral properties are supposed (...)
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  16. Nicholas L. Sturgeon (2006). Moral Explanations Defended. In James Dreier (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Moral Theory. Blackwell 241--262.
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  17. Nicholas L. Sturgeon (1998). Thomson Against Moral Explanations. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 58 (1):199-206.
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  18. Nicholas L. Sturgeon, Evil and Explanation. On the Relevance of Metaethics.
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  19. Nicholas L. Sturgeon (1986). Harman on Moral Explanations of Natural Facts. Southern Journal of Philosophy 24 (S1):69-78.
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  20. Pekka Väyrynen (forthcoming). The Supervenience Challenge to Non-Naturalism. In Tristram McPherson & David Plunkett (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Metaethics. Routledge
    This paper is a survey of the supervenience challenge to non-naturalist moral realism. I formulate a version of the challenge, consider the most promising non-naturalist replies to it, and suggest that no fully effective reply has yet been given.
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  21. Pekka Väyrynen (2013). Grounding and Normative Explanation. Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 87 (1):155-178.
    This paper concerns non-causal normative explanations such as ‘This act is wrong because/in virtue of__’. The familiar intuition that normative facts aren't brute or ungrounded but anchored in non- normative facts seems to be in tension with the equally familiar idea that no normative fact can be fully explained in purely non- normative terms. I ask whether the tension could be resolved by treating the explanatory relation in normative explanations as the sort of ‘grounding’ relation that receives extensive discussion in (...)
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  22. Pekka Väyrynen (2009). Normative Appeals to the Natural. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 79 (2):279 - 314.
    Surprisingly, many ethical realists and anti-realists, naturalists and not, all accept some version of the following normative appeal to the natural (NAN): evaluative and normative facts hold solely in virtue of natural facts, where their naturalness is part of what fits them for the job. This paper argues not that NAN is false but that NAN has no adequate non-parochial justification (a justification that relies only on premises which can be accepted by more or less everyone who accepts NAN) to (...)
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  23. Ralph Wedgwood (2006). The Normative Force of Reasoning. Noûs 40 (4):660–686.
    What exactly is reasoning? Like many other philosophers, I shall endorse a broadly causal conception of reasoning. Reasoning is a causal process, in which one mental event (say, one’s accepting the conclusion of a certain argument) is caused by an antecedent mental event (say, one’s considering the premises of the argument). Just like causal accounts of action and causal accounts of perception, causal accounts of reasoning have to confront a version of what has come to be known as the problem (...)
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  24. Lei Zhong (2012). An Explanatory Challenge to Moral Reductionism. Theoria 78 (4):309-325.
    It is generally believed that moral reductionism is immune from notorious problems in moral metaphysics and epistemology, such as the problem of moral explanation – it is at least on this dimension that moral reductionism scores better than moral anti- reductionism. However, in this article I reject this popular view. First, I argue that moral reductionism fails to help vindicate the explanatory efficacy of moral properties because the reductionist solution is either circular or otiose. Second, I attempt to show that (...)
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