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1 - 20 / 24 2016-10-11Although there are quite a few lists of argumentation fallacies on the web I can't find much about these two:
Julian Baggini describes to argumentation fallacy "If I don’t do it somebody else will" at
I don't find it anywhere else. Does that fallacy have a special name?
2) Also I can't find the fallacy: "If you don't show me an alternative for my doing you can't criticise it."
2016-07-20It seems to me that this work is very much unavailable to students and professionals. Have not found it online in any form, save for a few hardcover editions for more than $500. Crazy.
2015-12-22Here, for anyone interested!
University College LondonWhat kind of academic inquiry can best help humanity make progress towards as good a world as possible? Why are philosophers apparently so uninterested in this question? Is it because most believe the kind of academic inquiry we have today, devoted primarily to the pursuit of knoweldge and technological know-how, is the best that we can have, judged from the perspective of helping humanity make progress towards a better world? Why are philosophers apparently so uninterested in arguments which seem to show decisively that inquiry restricted to the pursuit of knowledge is both profoundly irrational, and a menace? The successful pursuit of knowledge and technological know-how, dissociated from a more fundamental concern to help humanity resolve conflicts and problems of living in increasingly cooperatively rational ways, is almost bound to lead to trouble. Scientific knowledge and technological know-how enormously increase our power to act - for some of us at ... (read more)Latest replies:
- Derek Allan, 2016-10-20 : _Re: while life expectancy among Māori was 298 years old:' _ I'm assuming this is a typo, Ian? _RE: &q... (read more)
- Ian Stuart, 2016-10-21 : Yessss..There does need to be discussion about this, and in indigenous communities it is a group discussion. In ou... (read more)
- Ian Stuart, 2016-10-21 : Yes, a very bad typo... should be 28. Identical to the life expectancy of Paris at the time... Yes, most cul... (read more)
- John Hodgson, 2017-01-07 : _"The scientific approach to ethics, which many here have labelled Eugenics, works well within an Indigenous framew... (read more)
- Derek Allan, 2017-01-07 : Hi John RE: There currently seems a strong justification for the notion that humanity often doesn't know what is in... (read more)
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Normative antirealism supposes that the only normative reasons are empirical, viz. those constituted by the actual attitudes of individuals and what follows from them. However, the empirical normative attitudes of some individuals (e.g. normative realists) posit attitude-independent standards of normative judgement: for example, rational measures of correctness (e.g. right and wrong) that are independent of the attitudes individuals actually have. Since it follows from the actual attitudes of realists that there are independent normative standards, at least for them antirealism entails realism. The antirealists respond that they have proven such independent standards to be fatally compromised: when properly scrutinized they fail to follow even from the attitudes of realists. But that's not an empirical claim! The antirealist is replacing the question "What attitudes do persons actually have?" with the question "What personal attitudes stand up to scrutiny?", so withstanding scrutiny be ... (read more)Latest replies:
- Scott Forschler, 2015-07-13 : I have to agree with Bill here, at least in general. I'm going to skip all the back and forth here and just go back... (read more)
- Gerald Hull, 2015-07-15 : If you want to know what I'm on about, check out the examples Ann in Sharon Street's "Objectivity and Truth... (read more)
- Scott Forschler, 2015-07-15 : Well, no, Jerry, it looks like _you_ got off on the wrong foot by using words like "antirealism" and &quo... (read more)
- Gerald Hull, 2015-07-17 : I posted my remarks because I am interested in the issues. Notwithstanding a regrettable impatience with what I pe... (read more)
- Scott Forschler, 2015-07-18 : Gerry, I am extremely serious, and your calling my remarks a "pissing contest" is extremely rude and quite unp... (read more)
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North Carolina State UniversityIf you come across this paper while researching philosophy of love, you should watch this: https://youtu.be/ykxNI137sPk
2015-03-27In The Possibility of Altruism, Thomas Nagel advocates substituting reasons for the role in human motivation traditionally played by desires. He sees the need because what people desire is an empirical matter revealed in behavior, and varies too greatly to provide the kind of inescapability he thinks morality requires: reasons can be "agent-neutral", whereas desires must always be "agent-relative" (to use terms later introduced by Parfit). But Nagel specifically rejects the possibility that this approach conflates causal explanation with normative justification: "a close connection between the two is already embodied in the ordinary concept of a reason" (15).
He proposes to dethrone desires by drawing attention to a particular problem regarding the role of "future desires" in practical reasoning. For example, suppose I now purchase a bottle of water for quenching the thirst I anticipate I will experience later in my drive home. How do we explain this purchase?&nbs ... (read more)Latest replies:
- Andrea Christofidou, 2015-03-30 : Given that your starting premise is false, we have no good reasons to accept the rest of your thesis. Nagel does n... (read more)
- Gerald Hull, 2015-03-31 : I appreciate your comments. Nagel's remarks at times are maddeningly opaque, and I welcome any clarification o... (read more)
- Andrea Christofidou, 2015-04-01 : I didn't want to get into a discussion about the nature of desire, or what counts as desire, nor did I think that yo... (read more)
- Gerald Hull, 2015-04-01 : Thanks; that does make better sense of your reply. Since I had not formulated or formatted my remarks syllogistica... (read more)
- Carl Rey, 2015-05-18 : Kibbey & Wagner Kibbey & Wagner, Criminal Attorneys
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2015-03-04I have been rereading The Possibility of Altruism, and have been struck by (pace Nagel) the essential incoherence of cognitive judgment internalism, at least on a rationalist construal of cognitivism (e.g. as opposed to naturalism).
On such a cognitive view, the truth of a moral judgment -- e.g. that act A is right -- is determinable by some rational assessment, regardless of one's involvement in A. That is, whether or not one is in a position to do A, it's rightness is something anyone can determine, analogous to the way one can determine that "5 + 7 = 12" or "P&Q --> P" are true. It is a rational truth.
But in determining the truth of a moral judgment I have not thereby decided to do anything, even in cases where I am involved. In this case (shame on me) I may not yet have decided to do what is right. The argument will be that, insofar I have not decided to do A, I have failed to fully appreciate the rightness of A. But we have seen that the determination of the right ... (read more)Latest replies:
- Steve Wallis, 2015-03-09 : Well said - and similar to some ideas I'm exploring here: http://philpapers.org/rec/WALDEE In "Developing effec... (read more)
- Gerald Hull, 2015-03-12 : Thank you for your remarks. I've looked up your paper on effectiveness in ethical systems, and it seems like a... (read more)
- Steve Wallis, 2015-04-20 : well.. I might argue that my approach to ethics is "meta-normative" instead of normative, but I might be split... (read more)
I was wounding, what are the major distinctions between disputes about the concepts used in ethics to disputes about concepts in the sciences (i.e. the definition of a 'species')?
Also what do you make of LukeProg's solution to conceptual disputes as presented n this post at lesswrong (http://lesswrong.com/lw/5u2/pluralistic_moral_reductionism/) I don't know if such an approach could work in the sciences although it might work in ethics.
Looking forward to your responses :)
Nice paper!. However, if I may, I wasn't convinced by your response to objection five. The objection, I take it, is that the intuitions you are marshaling about incoherence derive from a non-moral standpoint, that is, they are intuitions that arise when one is doing metaethics and not when one is actually moralizing. And it seems undeniable that Moore paradoxical sentences are straightforwardly bizarre when uttered by persons in the context of actual moralizing (just imagine actually having the relevant conversation). At the outset of your paper, you correctly note that expressivism is a theory about actual moralizing, so it seems like this is one objection to which you should be very sensitive. You respond:
This is not really a rejection of C3, but a rejection of C1, since it admits that it is not always the case that affective or conative attitudes are expressed by moral assertions. If non-cognitive mental states are only sometimes expressed by moral assertions, then the clai ... (read more)
This is a very interesting paper. I am in agreement with the basic premise, namely, that we should be suspicious of moral intuitions which are highly contingent or "flippable". However, I have one or two questions about the argument.
In one section, you're dealing with the problem of "typing" mechanisms. The point, as I understand it, is to show that your argument defeats demandingness intuitions but does not defeat other moral intuitions (such as those concerning the wrongness of slavery). You say:
Given these considerations, how generally should we type the testimonial process behind my moral belief that slavery is wrong? The reliability of (say) my mother’s anti-racist moral testimony in the actual world should not necessarily be impugned by the unreliability of her moral testimony were she a racist bigot, for her epistemic situation (i.e., her foundational moral beliefs) in the latter case would be radically mistaken. The two types of testimonial processes, then, are plausibl ... (read more)Latest replies:
- Matthew Braddock, 2013-06-19 : Hi Nick,Your comments much appreciated. & Your main comment focuses on the _Argument from Socialization Effects _(p... (read more)
- Nick Smyth, 2013-06-24 : Thanks again for the chance to discuss this really interesting issue. I hope you take these comments (from a rando... (read more)
- Matthew Braddock, 2013-06-24 : Hi Nick, thanks for your useful (very constructive) comments. Quick response. Of course, no attempt to solve... (read more)
- Nick Smyth, 2013-06-26 : The only sense I can make of a "type" of socialization is by thinking of it as a distinct social-psychological... (read more)
- Matthew Braddock, 2013-06-26 : Good stuff, Nick. My _Argument from Socialization Effects_ intends to stay neutral on the question of moral semantics.&n... (read more)
2013-06-11Hi Professor Demetriou,
I've just read the draft of your paper, and I really enjoyed it, especially the bits where you complicate the somewhat simplistic just-so cultural-evolutionary story provided by Ross and Nisbett. One rarely sees such deep engagement with actual anthropological data in moral-philosophical papers about disagreement, and I think your reflections here are a valuable contribution to this literature.
However, I have a question about the "pluralism" that is on offer, which is "a view urging the moral correctness of multiple and mutually irreducible comprehensive ethical outlooks , each suited to its own dimension of social life ." A familiar worry emerges here, which is that you are covertly drawing on a kind of monism which serves to make each of the competing moral systems appear attractive. The trouble begins with the word "suited": what does it mean to say that a moral outlook is "suited" t ... (read more)
2013-06-11This was a solid paper guys I really must commend you for the excellent work. With that said, I do agree with you about Raz's arguments. They seemed to possess little to no substance whatsoever and his argument of self-interest towards the end seemed to be more of a forfeiture of his premise than anything else. I will at least credit him for attempting to untangle the knots in this complex field we call moral philosophy but I had some major objections while reading. Please do correct me if I speak ignorantly or from a misinformed position.
1. Raz says to be moral is to see value in others and one's self. This value is derived from the virtue of being a person. Are we to take it that the recognition of this value disregards how we cultivate that value through action which subsequently has consequences? If I see value in someone, but still decide to take away their life because I perceive myself to be more valuable, am I moral or not.
2. A refutation of point 1 would be that to see value ... (read more)Latest replies:
- Derek Allan, 2013-06-24 : Hi Terence Yes I agree. The term “amoralist” is in itself very problematic, isn’t it? What would such a person be like... (read more)
- Terence Rajivan Edward, 2013-06-25 : Hi Derek, Actually, on reflection, I can see an argument for investigating whether the amoralist can be argued into some... (read more)
- Derek Allan, 2013-06-27 : Hi Terence I’m not sure I follow your argument completely, so correct me if I seem to be missing the point. I take... (read more)
- Terence Rajivan Edward, 2013-06-28 : I was hoping my last reply was clear, but a reference to the 'domain of morality' in an earlier post to Jo... (read more)
- Derek Allan, 2013-06-29 : Hi Terence Thanks for these additional remarks – which all seem Just an added thought on the reason/emotion point. Suppo... (read more)
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2013-03-25For anyone interested, I've written up a brief critique of this paper at Philosophy, et cetera.
2012-11-12I am delighted that someone of Kitcher's ability has tackled the meta-ethical implications of understanding morality as an evolutionary adaptation. Further, Christine Clavien has advanced that good cause by providing an inspiringly insightful and clear review of important implications of his work.
However, the science of the matter actually supports a much stronger hypothesis than Kitcher's "morality evolved to overcome altruism failures".That stronger hypothesis may have different meta-ethical implications.
Relevant criteria for scientific truth regarding morality as an evolutionary adaptation Include explanatory power for descriptive facts and puzzles, no contradiction with known facts, simplicity, and integration with the rest of science. By these criteria, a superior hypothesis can be stated as "morality overcomes a universal cooperation-exploitation dilemma by motivating or advocating altruistic cooperation strategies". That is, morality is composed of assemblies of biolog ... (read more)Latest replies:
- Kevin Corbett, 2013-01-11 : It remains to be seen that the concept of ethics is "intrinsically bound" to concept of altruism. In order for... (read more)
- Reid A. Ashbaucher, 2013-02-01 : I can appreciate this conversation which focuses on the question of morality. It's interesting to me how same approa... (read more)
- Kevin Corbett, 2013-02-24 : Even if it is the case that morality is deontological and derives from God, natural selection is basically an establishe... (read more)
Kings CollegeHello all,
I'm currently reading many of the arguments surrounding the Frege-Geach problem for non-cognitivism. So far it appears that all attempted solutions of the problem have failed. Would that be a fair conclusion of the situation currently does anyone know?
Florida State UniversityA question from a novice on the topic:
I'm suspecting that certain game-theoretic norms constitute necessary, a priori discernable norms and hence provide a robustly realist foundation for morality. (And possibly even "non-naturalist", although I suspect that that categorization may not be meaningful or worth caring about.) As I understand the nature of game theory, it discovers norms of procedural collective rationality.
There is of course room to debate the extent to which morality really is based on the norms of game theory. However, my questions are slightly different: What is the ontological status of game theoretic norms? And what are the consequences for the ontology of morality?
Reading suggestions much appreciated.Latest replies:
- John Jones, 2012-01-04 : I assume by a priori you mean identifying or manifesting conditions, and not the parts so identified or manifested. Unfo... (read more)
- Boram Lee, 2012-01-04 : What do you have in mind? Could you give me an example of a game-theoretic norm? (Perhaps the Nash Equilibri... (read more)
- Joseph Wagner, 2012-01-23 : I view ontology as an ancient, antiquated, obsolete and wholly useless line of inquiry, which no longer has relevance to... (read more)
- Sj Chapman, 2012-02-01 : Loving this discussion, just FYI. I came across something that reminded me of this forum today when reading about... (read more)
- John Jones, 2012-02-01 : Responding to Joseph Wagner, and straying a little from the topic of game theory (though there are some relevant points... (read more)
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2011-09-10I couldn't find Tim's email so am instead posting here a link to my critical discussion of his paper (which may also be of interest to other readers):
Moral Judgments, 2Dism, and Attitudinal Commitments.
Florida State UniversityHello, philosophical world:
Often I and many people I know categorize other people's actions as either 'morally permissible' (right, in the weak sense), 'morally impermissible' (wrong), or 'morally obligatory' (right, in the strong sense). What we ascribe to the actions is known as a /deontic status/. A deontic status differs from evaluative statuses such as 'good', 'bad', or 'neutral'. For one thing, deontic statuses apply only to actions, whereas evaluative statuses apply both to actions and to many other sorts of things.
Many people believe in supererogation. Here's an example of that: Sam's donation to the Red Cross is supererogatory if it was not obligatory for him to do, not impermissible, but also goes 'above and beyond' what is merely permissible. (Sometimes people call such actions 'above and beyond the call of duty', which we might abbreviate as ABCD.)
I take it that supererogation is a 'mixed' concept: mixed in the sense that it has both deontic and evaluative component ... (read more)Latest replies:
- Madhumita Mitra, 2011-01-22 : Very interesting topic!. You are right. Suberogation is a real category- the action is by nature( positive) valueless, b... (read more)
- Bryan Maloney, 2011-04-18 : I'm certainly not up to speed in the professional field, but I can give a data point where this sort of thing is pra... (read more)
- Paul McNamara, 2011-04-18 : Much earlier discussion occurs in the context of Christianity. See 3rd- http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/supererogation... (read more)
- Jay Quigley, 2011-05-03 : Certainly the following actions by an Orthodox Christian might be suberogatory: going to happy hour and then the meat se... (read more)
- Jay Quigley, 2011-05-03 : Ah, thanks Paul (if I may). And I never thanked you for your previous wonderful ref Call the previously described Christ... (read more)
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Jonathan Way writes: "Some irrational states can be avoided in more than one way. For example, if you believe that you ought to A you can avoid akrasia by intending to A or by dropping the belief that you ought to A".
Rather than avoiding akrasia by dropping the belief that one ought A; Jonathan Way has very clearly given a definition of the condition. Clearly the writer has in mind a prior sense of duty in the mind of a person described. This person's path is either to perform his duty, or to discover that his proposed action is not obligatory.
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