Reason, Morality, and Hume's "Active Principles": Comments on Rachel Cohon's Hume's Morality: Feeling and Fabrication
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Hume Studies 34 (2):267-276 (2008)
Rachel Cohon's Hume is a moral sensing theorist, who holds both that moral qualities (virtue and vice) are mind-dependent and that there is such a thing as moral knowledge. He is an anti-rationalist about motivation, arguing that reason alone does not motivate, but allows that both beliefs and passions are motivating. (That is, some beliefs cause passions and some passions cause action.) And he is both a descriptive and a normative moral theorist who, despite having resources for putting checks on our sentimentally-based moral evaluations, does end up with a kind of a relativistic account of the virtues and vices. Professor Cohon's arguments in Hume's Morality1 are tight and vigorous. Anyone working on these ..
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