Truthmaking, Metaethics, and Creeping Minimalism

Philosophical Studies 163 (1):213-232 (2013)
Abstract
Creeping minimalism threatens to cloud the distinction between realist and anti-realist metaethical views. When anti-realist views equip themselves with minimalist theories of truth and other semantic notions, they are able to take on more and more of the doctrines of realism (such as the existence of moral truths, facts, and beliefs). But then they start to look suspiciously like realist views. I suggest that creeping minimalism is a problem only if moral realism is understood primarily as a semantic doctrine. I argue that moral realism is better understood instead as a metaphysical doctrine. As a result, we can usefully regiment the metaethical debate into one about moral truthmakers: in virtue of what are moral judgments true? I show how the notion of truthmaking has been simmering just below the surface of the metaethical debate, and how it reveals one metaethical view (quasi-realism) to be a stronger contender than the others.
Keywords Creeping minimalism  Truthmakers  Metaethics  Quasi-realism  Moral realism
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Jamin Asay (2012). A Truthmaking Account of Realism and Anti-Realism. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 93 (3):373-394.
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