Intention and Permissibility

Ethical Perspectives 16 (1):81-101 (2009)
Abstract
There are two kinds of view in the literature concerning the relevance of intention to permissibility. While subjectivism assumes that an agent acts permissibly if he or she believes that the conduct is necessary for a moral purpose, for objectivism the de facto presence of an objective reason to justify one’s deeds is what matters. Recently, Scanlon and Hanser defend a moderate version of objectivism and subjectivism, respectively. Although I have a degree of sympathy toward both views, I will argue that the truth lies somewhere in between. The view that I suggest in this paper hopefully occupies a space between subjectivism and objectivism and can accommodate the intuitions that neither of those views cannot account for.
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