Theoretical and Practical Reason: A Critical Rationalist View

If the task of theoretical reason is to discover truth or reasons for belief, then theoretical reason is impossible. Attempts to circumvent this by appeal to probabilities are self-defeating. If the task of practical reason is to discover what we ought to do or what actions are desirable or valuable, then practical reason is impossible. Appeal to the subjective ought is self-defeating and often gives either a wrong answer or a self-contradictory one. I argue that the task of theoretical reason is to decide which propositions to instate; and that the task of practical reason is to decide which ought-propositions to act on. As a consequence theoretical reason is seen as a branch of practical reason. This approach makes both theoretical and practical reason practicable and free of the defects of the usual accounts.
Keywords evaluation scheme  instate  Popper  practical reason  pragmatic paradox  self-contradiction  theoretical reason  Kolodny  MacFarlane  subjective
Categories (categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index Translate to english
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 16,658
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

48 ( #70,772 of 1,725,989 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

7 ( #92,620 of 1,725,989 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.