Requiring and justifying: Two dimensions of normative strength [Book Review]

Erkenntnis 59 (1):5 - 36 (2003)
Many contemporary accounts of normative reasons for action accord a single strength value to normative reasons. This paper first uses some examples to argue against such views by showing that they seem to commit us to intransitive or counterintuitive claims about the rough equivalence of the strengths of certain reasons. The paper then explains and defends an alternate account according to which normative reasons for action have two separable dimensions of strength: requiring strength, and justifying strength. Such an account explains our intuitions in the cases that make trouble for single-value views. The justifying/requiring account is compared with two other solutions that have been offered to justify and explain our intuitions about these sorts of cases. These other solutions appeal to the notions of incommensurability of reasons, and to second-order normative entities called `exclusionary permissions'. It is argued that the justifying/requiring distinction provides a superior solution.
Keywords Philosophy   Philosophy   Epistemology   Ethics   Logic   Ontology
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
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 23,201
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
Douglas W. Portmore (2008). Are Moral Reasons Morally Overriding? Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 11 (4):369 - 388.
Alexander R. Pruss (2013). Omnirationality. Res Philosophica 90 (1):1-21.

View all 6 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

67 ( #71,050 of 1,940,948 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

5 ( #197,835 of 1,940,948 )

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.