David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Acta Analytica 25 (3):279-284 (2010)
J.J.C. Smart famously complained that rule utilitarianism is incoherent, and that rule utilitarians are guilty of rule worship . Much has been said about whether Smartâs complaint is justified, but I will assume for the sake of argument that Smart was on to something. Instead, I have three other goals. First, I want to show that Smartâs complaint is a specific instance of a more general objection to a moral theoryâwhat I will call the Incoherence Objection. Second, I want to illustrate how the Incoherence Objection can apply both to consequentialist and, surprisingly, some nonconsequentialist theories. Finally, I want to demonstrate at least one way nonconsequentialist theories that make use of rules, principles, and the like can dodge the Incoherence Objection
|Keywords||Utilitarianism Deontology Consequentialism Rules Moral theory|
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References found in this work BETA
Brad Hooker (2000). Ideal Code, Real World: A Rule-Consequentialist Theory of Morality. Oxford University Press.
David Lyons (1965). Forms and Limits of Utilitarianism. Oxford, Clarendon Press.
Elijah Millgram (2003). Does the Categorical Imperative Give Rise to a Contradiction in the Will? Philosophical Review 112 (4):525-560.
Elijah Millgram (1997). Practical Induction. Harvard University Press.
J. J. C. Smart (1956). Extreme and Restricted Utilitarianism. Philosophical Quarterly 6 (25):344-354.
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