David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 10 (5):441 - 456 (2007)
Nihilism, Nietzsche and the Doppelganger Problem Was Nietzsche a nihilist? Yes, because, like J. L. Mackie, he was an error-theorist about morality, including the elitist morality to which he himself subscribed. But he was variously a diagnostician, an opponent and a survivor of certain other kinds of nihilism. Schacht argues that Nietzsche cannot have been an error theorist, since meta-ethical nihilism is inconsistent with the moral commitment that Nietzsche displayed. Schacht’s exegetical argument parallels the substantive argument (advocated in recent years by Wright and Blackburn) that Mackie’s error theory can’t be true because if it were, we would have to give up morality or give up moralizing. I answer this argument with a little bit of help from Nietzsche. I then pose a problem, the Doppelganger Problem, for the meta-ethical nihilism that I attribute to Mackie and Nietzsche. (If A is a moral proposition then not-A is a moral proposition: hence not all moral propositions can be false.) I solve the problem by reformulating the error theory and also deal with a variant of the problem, the Reinforced Doppelganger, glancing at a famous paper of Ronald Dworkin’s. Thus, whatever its demerits, the error theory, is not self-refuting, nor does it require us to give up morality.
|Keywords||Error theory Nihilism Nietzsche J. L. Mackie Doppelganger Bertrand Russell Anti-realism Crispin Wright Simon Blackburn Richard Schacht Sayre-McCord|
|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
Patrick Clipsham (2013). In Defense of Anti‐Archimedean Moral Realism: A Response to Recent Critics. Metaphilosophy 44 (4):470-484.
Similar books and articles
Robert G. Morrison (1997). Nietzsche and Buddhism: A Study in Nihilism and Ironic Affinities. Oxford University Press.
Nayère Bani, The Eclipse of Being: Heidegger on the Question of Being and Nothing and the Ground of Nihilism.
Ashley Woodward (2009). Nihilism in Postmodernity. The Davies Group.
Ashley Woodward (2002). Nihilism and the Postmodern in Vattimo's Nietzsche. Minerva - An Internet Journal of Philosophy 6:51-67.
Jeffrey Metzger (2009). How Deep Are the Roots of Nihilism? : Nietzsche on the Creative Power of Nature and Morality. In Jeffrey A. Metzger (ed.), Nietzsche, Nihilism, and the Philosophy of the Future. Continuum.
Michael Allen Gillespie (1995). Nihilism Before Nietzsche. University of Chicago Press.
Ashley Woodward (2011). Camus and Nihilism. Sophia 50 (4):543-559.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads244 ( #2,694 of 1,692,983 )
Recent downloads (6 months)86 ( #730 of 1,692,983 )
How can I increase my downloads?