David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 11 (3):247 - 261 (2008)
We best understand Rule Consequentialism as a theory of pattern-based reasons, since it claims that we have reasons to perform some action because of the goodness of the pattern consisting of widespread performance of the same type of action in the same type of circumstances. Plausible forms of Rule Consequentialism are also pluralist, in the sense that, alongside pattern-based reasons, they recognise ordinary act-based reasons, based on the goodness of individual actions. However, Rule Consequentialist theories are distinguished from other pluralist theories of pattern-based reasons by implausible claims about the relative importance of act-based and pattern-based reasons in different cases. Rule Consequentialists should give up these claims. They should either embrace some other pluralist pattern-based view, or reject pattern-based reasons altogether. Note, though, that these arguments apply only to compliance-based, rather than acceptance-based, versions of Rule Consequentialism. This suggests that these two kinds of theory are more different from each other than we might previously have realised.
|Keywords||Act Consequentialism Rule Consequentialism Reasons Rightness Act-based reasons Pattern-based reasons Pluralism Hooker|
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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.
S. L. Hurley (1989). Natural Reasons: Personality and Polity. Oxford University Press.
Christopher Kutz (2000). Complicity: Ethics and Law for a Collective Age. Cambridge University Press.
Michael J. Zimmerman (1996). The Concept of Moral Obligation. Cambridge University Press.
Liam B. Murphy (2000). Moral Demands in Nonideal Theory. Oxford University Press.
Citations of this work BETA
Christopher Woodard (2009). What's Wrong with Possibilism. Analysis 69 (2):219 - 226.
Christopher Woodard (2011). Rationality and the Unit of Action. Review of Philosophy and Psychology 2 (2):261-277.
Christopher Woodard (2009). Pedro's Significance. Southern Journal of Philosophy 47 (3):301-319.
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