The epistemological challenge to metanormative realism: how best to understand it, and how to cope with it
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Philosophical Studies 148 (3):413 - 438 (2010)
Metaethical—or, more generally, metanormative—realism faces a serious epistemological challenge. Realists owe us—very roughly speaking—an account of how it is that we can have epistemic access to the normative truths about which they are realists. This much is, it seems, uncontroversial among metaethicists, myself included. But this is as far as the agreement goes, for it is not clear—nor uncontroversial—how best to understand the challenge, what the best realist way of coping with it is, and how successful this attempt is. In this paper I try, first, to present the challenge in its strongest version, and second, to show how realists—indeed, robust realists—can cope with it. The strongest version of the challenge is, I argue, that of explaining the correlation between our normative beliefs and the independent normative truths. And I suggest an evolutionary explanation (of a preestablished harmony kind) as a way of solving it
|Keywords||Moral realism Moral epistemology|
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References found in this work BETA
Allan Gibbard (2003). Thinking How to Live. Harvard University Press.
Russ Shafer-Landau (2003/2005). Moral Realism: A Defence. Oxford University Press.
Allan Gibbard (1990). Wise Choices, Apt Feelings: A Theory of Normative Judgment. Harvard University Press.
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Citations of this work BETA
Guy Kahane (2011). Evolutionary Debunking Arguments. Noûs 45 (1):103-125.
William J. FitzPatrick (2015). Debunking Evolutionary Debunking of Ethical Realism. Philosophical Studies 172 (4):883-904.
Kevin Brosnan (2011). Do the Evolutionary Origins of Our Moral Beliefs Undermine Moral Knowledge? Biology and Philosophy 26 (1):51-64.
Katia Vavova (2015). Evolutionary Debunking of Moral Realism. Philosophy Compass 10 (2):104-116.
Daniel Crow (forthcoming). Causal Impotence and Evolutionary Influence: Epistemological Challenges for Non-Naturalism. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice:1-17.
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