David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Res Publica 10 (4):425-447 (2004)
In this paper, I consider and question an influential position in Anglo-American philosophy of action which suggests that reasons for action must be internal, in other words that statements about reasons for actions must make reference to some fact or set of facts about the agent and her desires. I do so by asking whether legal requirements could be considered as reasons for actions and if in so considering them one must translate statements about legal requirements into statements about the psychological state of the agent fulfilling those requirements. Since such a process of translation seems neither necessary nor desirable, I suggest that the crudest forms of the internalist position are found wanting. I discuss a more sophisticated form of internalism put forward by Bernard Williams and criticised by John McDowell. I extend McDowells argument to cover legal reasons and suggest that Williams argument fails to recognise that reasons for action entail standards of correctness that are irreducible to facts about individual character and motivation. I conclude with a brief description of the justificatory status of legal requirements.
|Keywords||external reasons internal reasons legal obligation McDowell Williams|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
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.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Pamela Hieronymi (2011). Reasons for Action. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 111 (3pt3):407-427.
María Cristina Redondo (2005). Legal Reasons: Between Universalism and Particularism. Journal of Moral Philosophy 2 (1):47-68.
Matthew H. Kramer (1999). Requirements, Reasons, and Raz: Legal Positivism and Legal Duties. Ethics 109 (2):375-407.
Niko Kolodny (2005). Why Be Rational? Mind 114 (455):509-563.
Clayton Littlejohn (2009). ‘Ought’, ‘Can’, and Practical Reasons. American Philosophical Quarterly 46 (4):363-73.
Stephen Finlay (2006). The Reasons That Matter. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 84 (1):1 – 20.
Dean Lubin (2009). External Reasons. Metaphilosophy 40 (2):273-291.
Christian Dahlman (2009). The Difference Between Obedience Assumed and Obedience Accepted. Ratio Juris 22 (2):187-196.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads17 ( #98,867 of 1,102,742 )
Recent downloads (6 months)4 ( #84,424 of 1,102,742 )
How can I increase my downloads?