Moral Realities: An Essay in Philosophical Psychology

Routledge (1991)
Abstract
Mark Platts' influential first book Ways of Meaning argued within the context of the philosophy of language that a `realist' account of moral thought was possible. Moral Realities defends the same possibility from the perspective of the philosophy of psychology. Moral Realities engages the classical moral philosophies of Hume, Mandeville and Nietzsche, and tackles the powerful arguments of the contemporary moral relativists. Platts uses an existing critique of philosophical notions of desire and value to present a descriptive metaphysics of morals--clarifying both what morality is and what it is not. He also employs a classification of desire that articulates a general theory of value and valuing which is distinguished by a cognitive approach given to certain kinds of moral valuing. The possibility of applying this approach to moral valuings is defended against the persuasive criticisms of both the Humean subjectivist and the contemporary moral relativist. This is a challenging book which illuminates many of the major issues of contemporary moral philosophy including: the practical nature of moral thought, free will and choice, morality and religious belief, and the pragmatics of moral discourse.
Keywords Ethics  Desire (Philosophy  Values
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Call number BJ1012.P633 1991
ISBN(s) 0415058929
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