Ayer and Stevenson's Epistemological Emotivisms

Croatian Journal of Philosophy 4 (1):59-79 (2004)
Ayer and Stevenson advocated ethical emotivisms, non-cognitivist understandings of the meanings of moral terms and functions of moral judgments. I argue that their reasons for ethical emotivisms suggestanalogous epistemological emotivisms. Epistemological emotivism importantly undercuts any epistemic support Ayer and Stevenson offered for ethical emotivism. This is because if epistemic emotivism is true, all epistemic judgments are neither true nor false so it is neither true nor false that anyone should accept ethical emotivism or is justified in believing it. Thus, their perspectives are epistemologically self-undermining and, truthfully, should be rejected. Unlike Ayer and Stevenson, Gibbard explicitly endorses ethical and epistemological emotivism, or expressivism; I criticize his views in detail elsewhere
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DOI croatjphil20044126
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