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Summary

Defining 'normativity' is itself a normative task, and no clear agreement has been reached on the matter. The normative has often been contrasted with the descriptive; sometimes the normative is thought to be made up of deontic (e.g. 'oughts') and evaluative (e.g. 'good') concepts. 'Normativity' may have at least two senses: first, a nomophoric sense, if one refers to implicit or explicit rules (of various kinds); second, an axiological sense, if one refers to values. Few have defined normativity explicitly; many are interested in the normativity of something else (meaning and content, semantics, aesthetics, moral claims, epistemic norms, context, the law) rather than in normativity itself. When they do, normativity is usually explained (or explained away) with reference to "having reasons".

Key works The contemporary debate on normativity has various threads. A recent, fundamental work dealing directly with 'normativity' tout court is Thomson 2008. The normativity of morality and reason is investigated in Korsgaard 1996. For the normativity of meaning and content, one classical piece is surely Kripke 1982. Fundamental works for the normativity of the law are Kelsen 1967 and Kelsen 1990.
Introductions For an overview of contemporary work on normativity, see Finlay 2010
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  1. Situated self-awareness in expert performance: a situated normativity account of riken no ken.Katsunori Miyahara & Miguel Segundo-Ortin - 2022 - Synthese 200 (3):1-25.
    We explore the nature of expert minds in skilled performance by examining classic Japanese dramatist Zeami’s account of skilled expertise in Noh drama. Zeami characterizes expert minds by the co-existence of mushin and riken no ken. Mushin is an empty state of mind devoid of mental contents. Riken no ken is a distinctive form of self-awareness, where the actor embodies a common perspective with the audience upon one’s own performance. Conventional accounts of riken no ken present it as a form (...)
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  2. A Rossian Account of the Normativity of Logic.R. M. Farley & Deke Caiñas Gould - 2022 - Southwest Philosophy Review 38 (1):103-113.
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  3. Distinctively Political Normativity in Political Theory.Eva Erman & Niklas Möller - forthcoming - Wiley: Philosophy Compass.
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  4. Distinctively Political Normativity in Political Theory.Eva Erman & Niklas Möller - forthcoming - Philosophy Compass:e12835.
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  5. Contemporary Phenomenologies of Normativity: Norms, Goals, and Values.Sara Heinämaa & Mirja Hartimo - 2022 - Routledge.
    This book offers an updated and comprehensive phenomenology of norms and normativity. It is the first volume that systematically tackles both the normativity of experiencing and various experiences of norms. Part I begins with a discussion of the methodological resources that phenomenology offers for the critique of epistemological, social and cultural norms. It argues that these resources are powerful and have largely been neglected in contemporary philosophy as well as social and human sciences. The second part deepens the discussion by (...)
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  6. Normativity, Meaning, and the Promise of Phenomenology.Matthew Burch & Jack Marsh - 2019 - Routledge.
    The aim of this volume is to critically assess the philosophical importance of phenomenology as a method for studying the normativity of meaning and its transcendental conditions. Using the pioneering work of Steven Crowell as a springboard, phenomenologists from all over the world examine the promise of phenomenology for illuminating long-standing problems in epistemology, the philosophy of mind, action theory, the philosophy of religion, and moral psychology. The essays are unique in that they engage with the phenomenological tradition not as (...)
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  7. Philosophy, Obligation and the Law: Bentham’s Ontology of Normativity.Piero Tarantino - 2018 - Routledge.
    The distinction between reality and fiction -- The representation of the physical world -- Ethical fictitious entities -- Normativity and motivation.
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  8. Bruno Latour: The Normativity of Networks: The Normativity of Networks.Kyle McGee - 2013 - Routledge.
    The first extended study of Bruno Latoures legal theory, this book presents a critical reconstruction of the whole of Latoures oeuvre to date, from Laboratory Life to An Inquiry into the Modes of Existence. Based on the powerful insights into normative effects that actor-network theory makes possible, the book advances a new theory of legal normativity and the force of law, rethinking Latoures work on technology, the image,eeand referential scientific inscriptions,eeamong others, and placing them within the ambit of legality.eeThe book (...)
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  9. Truth and Normativity: An Inquiry Into the Basis of Everyday Moral Claims.Iain Brassington - 2007 - Routledge.
    By posing the question of what it is that marks the difference between something like terrorism and something like civil society, Brassington argues that commonsense moral arguments against terrorism or political violence imply that the modern democratic polis might also be morally unjustifiable. In exploring this problem, Brassington identifies a tension between the primary values of truth and normativity in the standard accounts of moral theory.
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  10. A Natural Law Approach to Normativity.Bebhinn Donnelly - 2007 - Routledge.
    Exploring the relationship between natural law theory and the philosophy of law, Bebhinn Donnelly proposes a new approach to natural law theory - one which addresses some of the tradition's shortcomings, and advances further the approach to Hume's dichotomy. This volume will be of interest to academics in philosophy of law, moral/political philosophy, natural law theorists, and students of jurisprudence internationally.
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  11. In Defense of Constitutivism About Epistemic Normativity.David Horst - forthcoming - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly.
    Epistemic constitutivism (EC) holds that the nature of believing is such that it gives rise to a standard of correctness and that other epistemic normative notions (e.g., reasons for belief) can be explained in terms of this standard. If defensible, this view promises an attractive and unifying account of epistemic normativity. However, EC faces a forceful objection: that constitutive standards of correctness are never enough for generating normative reasons. This paper aims to defend EC in the face of this objection. (...)
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  12. Agency and Normativity.Kenneth Walden - 2022 - In Luca Ferrero (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Agency. New York:
    Some philosophers posit a connection between normativity and agency. This connection allows us to infer propositions about what we ought to do or what reason we have to do from the conditions of action. This chapter considers arguments for this connection. In particular, the chapter argues that not only do the conditions of generic agency have important normative implications for us, but so too do the conditions of narrower, more contingent, and more local kinds of agency. Finally, objections to this (...)
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  13. Kevin Thompson. Hegel's Theory of Normativity: The Systematic Foundations of the Philosophical Science of Right. Evanston IL: Northwestern University Press, 2019. ISBN 978-0-81013993-0 (Hbk). ISBN 978-0-81013992-3 (Pbk). ISBN 978-0-81013994-7 (Ebk). Pp. 117. $99.95 (Hbk). $34.95 (Pbk). $34.95 (Ebk). [REVIEW]Armando Manchisi - 2022 - Hegel Bulletin 43 (1):149-152.
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  14. To Understand the Origin of Life We Must First Understand the Role of Normativity.Tom Froese - 2021 - Biosemiotics 14 (3):657-663.
    Deacon develops a minimal model of a nonparasitic virus to explore how nucleotide sequences came to be characterized by a code-like informational at the origin of life. The model serves to problematize the concept of biological normativity because it highlights two common yet typically implicit assumptions: that life could consist as an inert form, were it not for extrinsic sources of physical instability, and that life could have originated as a singular self-contained individual. I propose that the origin of life, (...)
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  15. Freedom, Normativity, and Concepts: Adorno Contra Brandom on the Path From Kant.Samuel Ferns - 2022 - Critical Horizons 23 (1):55-77.
    ABSTRACT Robert Brandom reads from Kant an account of reasoning and concept use centred upon normativity and autonomous freedom in the act of judgement. I claim that this reading is flawed because it screens from view another aspect of Kant’s reflections on freedom and reason. By comparing Brandom’s interpretation of Kant with that of Theodor W. Adorno, highlighting their contrasting views of the relation between transcendental and empirical, I contend that Brandom unduly conflates freedom and normativity and thereby takes the (...)
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  16. ‘Strange Multiplicity’ as a Moral-Political Value: Potential and Costs of Normativity in World Politics.Christof Royer - forthcoming - Journal of International Political Theory:175508822210805.
    Recent International Relations scholarship has identified ‘societal multiplicity’ as the ontological concept that gives IR its identity as an academic discipline. My article, by contrast, addresses the question: What are the consequences, that is, the positive potential and the necessary costs, of understanding multiplicity as a moral-political value in world politics? The question is important because, in contrast to the focus on multiplicity as the ontology of IR, it allows us to develop a more radically democratic idea of multiplicity as (...)
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  17. Distinctively Political Normativity in Political Theory.Eva Erman & Niklas Möller - forthcoming - Philosophy Compass:e12835.
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  18. Forever United: The Co-Evolution of Language and Normativity.Ehud Lamm - 2014 - In Daniel Dor, Christopher Knight & Jerome Lewis (eds.), The social origins of language: Studies in the evolution of language. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 267-283.
    Language and norms are both fundamental to human society. A social account of language evolution must take into account the normative context in which language acquisition, use, and change occur. However, at the same time, norms in human society are directly affected by language and the linguistic skills of individuals. My aim in this chapter is to explore the evolutionary consequences of this bi-directional interaction. I discuss how it can help explain central linguistic notions including imperatives, questions, possessives, modal vocabulary, (...)
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  19. Determinism, ‘Ought’ Implies ‘Can’ and Moral Obligation.Nadine Elzein - 2020 - Dialectica 74 (1):35-62..
    Haji argues that determinism threatens deontic morality, not via a threat to moral responsibility, but directly, because of the principle that ‘ought’ implies ‘can’. Haji’s argument requires not only that we embrace an ‘ought’ implies ‘can’ principle, but also that we adopt the principle that ‘ought’ implies ‘able not to’. I argue that we have little reason to adopt the latter principle, and examine whether deontic morality might be destroyed on the basis of the more commonly embraced ‘ought’ implies ‘can’ (...)
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  20. Guidance for Mortals: Heidegger on Norms.David Batho - 2021 - In Cynthia Coe (ed.), The Palgrave Handbook of German Idealism and Philosophy. pp. 203-232.
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  21. 10. The Normativity of Communication: Norms and Ideals in Peirce’s Speculative Rhetoric.Ignacio Redondo - 2012 - In Cornelis de Waal & Krysztof Piotr Skowroski (eds.), The Normative Thought of Charles S. Peirce. Fordham University Press. pp. 214-230.
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  22. 8. Why Is the Normativity of Logic Based on Rules?Ahti-Veikko Pietarinen - 2012 - In Cornelis de Waal & Krysztof Piotr Skowroski (eds.), The Normative Thought of Charles S. Peirce. Fordham University Press. pp. 172-184.
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  23. Normative Uncertainty Without Unjustified Value Comparisons.Ron Aboodi - 2022 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 21 (3).
    Jennifer Rose Carr’s (2020) article “Normative Uncertainty Without Theories” proposes a method to maximize expected value under normative uncertainty without Intertheoretic Value Comparison (hereafter IVC). Carr argues that this method avoids IVC because it avoids theories: the agent’s credence is distributed among normative hypotheses of a particular type, which don’t constitute theories. However, I argue that Carr’s method doesn’t avoid or help to solve what I consider as the justificatory problem of IVC, which isn’t specific to comparing theories as such. (...)
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  24. A Multidimensional View of Misrecognition.Douglas Giles - 2018 - Ethics, Politics and Society 1 (1):9-38.
    Following Axel Honneth, I accept that recognition is integral to individuals’ self-realization and to social justice and that instances of misrecognition are injustices that cause moral injuries. The change in approach to misrecognition that I advocate is to replace a macrosocial top-down picture of misrecognition, such as Honneth’s typology, with a fine-grained phenomenological picture of multiple dimensions in misrecognition behaviors that offers greater explanatory power. This paper explains why a multidimensional view of misrecognition is needed and explores the various ways (...)
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  25. Normativity, Meaning, and the Promise of Phenomenology.Matt Burch & Irene McMullin (eds.) - 2019 - New York, NY, USA: Routledge.
    The aim of this volume is to critically assess the philosophical importance of phenomenology as a method for studying the normativity of meaning and its transcendental conditions. Using the pioneering work of Steven Crowell as a springboard, phenomenologists from all over the world examine the promise of phenomenology for illuminating long-standing problems in epistemology, the philosophy of mind, action theory, the philosophy of religion, and moral psychology. The essays are unique in that they engage with the phenomenological tradition not as (...)
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  26. Enactive Ethics and Hermeneutics—From Bodily Normativity to Critical Ethics.Geoffrey Dierckxsens & Lasse T. Bergmann - 2022 - Topoi 41 (2):299-312.
    Recent enactive accounts of cognition have begun to disentangle social and normative aspects of the human mind. In this paper, we will contribute to this debate by developing an enactive account of moral development, i.e. the learning of ethical norms, and critical engagement with these norms through social affordances, participatory sense-making, and moral concern. The difficulty in articulating such an account is in reconciling the affective embodied aspects of moral experiences with the more orthodox aspects of ethics like critical reflection. (...)
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  27. Making us Autonomous: The Enactive Normativity of Morality.Cassandra Pescador Canales & Laura Mojica - 2022 - Topoi 41 (2):257-274.
    Any complete account of morality should be able to account for its characteristic normativity; we show that enactivism is able to do so while doing justice to the situated and interactive nature of morality. Moral normativity primarily arises in interpersonal interaction and is characterized by agents’ possibility of irrevocably changing each other’s autonomies, that is, the possibility of harming or expanding each other’s autonomy. We defend that moral normativity, as opposed to social and other forms of normativity, regulates and, in (...)
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  28. Getting Things Right: Fittingness, Value, and Reasons.Conor McHugh & Jonathan Way - forthcoming - Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    This book has two main aims. First, it develops and defends a constitutive account of normative reasons as premises of good reasoning. This account says, roughly, that to be a normative reason for a response (such as a belief or intention) is to be premise of good reasoning, from fitting responses, to that response. Second, building on the account of reasons, it develops and defends a fittingness-first account of the structure of the normative domain. This account says that there is (...)
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  29. Social Persons and the Normativity of Needs.Oritsegbubemi Anthony Oyowe - 2021 - In Motsamai Molefe & Christopher Allsobrook (eds.), Towards an African Political Philosophy of Needs. Springer Verlag. pp. 87-107.
    There has been significant work done in contemporary African philosophy on what it means to be a person. Moreover, there is significant consensus that a traditional African conception of person not only emphasises the social aspects but also entails that in political reasoning higher premium is placed on the duties individuals have to others and the community at large, as opposed to whatever rights they may have. In contrast, not much work has been done to unpack the precise relationship between (...)
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  30. Existence as a Source of Normativity: An Alternative to Searle’s View.Roberta De Monticelli - 2021 - In Paolo Di Lucia & Edoardo Fittipaldi (eds.), Revisiting Searle on Deriving “Ought” From “Is”. Springer Verlag. pp. 121-138.
    John Searle reflections on how to derive “Ought” from an “Is’” present a general theory of the sources of normativity within human civilizations. This chapter explores an alternative grounding of normativity on “laws of essence”, a grounding that proceeds by addressing the crucial problem of how to locate essences in a world of facts. To that end, classical phenomenology is shown to be an ontology of concreteness, but this, far from removing it from the dimension of ideals and norms—even practical, (...)
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  31. One Heresy and One Orthodoxy: On Dialetheism, Dimathematism, and the Non-normativity of Logic.Heinrich Wansing - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-25.
    In this paper, Graham Priest’s understanding of dialetheism, the view that there exist true contradictions, is discussed, and various kinds of metaphysical dialetheism are distinguished between. An alternative to dialetheism is presented, namely a thesis called ‘dimathematism’. It is pointed out that dimathematism enables one to escape a slippery slope argument for dialetheism that has been put forward by Priest. Moreover, dimathematism is presented as a thesis that is helpful in rejecting the claim that logic is a normative discipline.
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  32. Social Animals and the Potential for Morality: On the Cultural Exaptation of Behavioral Capacities Required for Normativity.Estelle Palao - 2021 - In Johan De Smedt & Helen De Cruz (eds.), Empirically Engaged Evolutionary Ethics. Synthese Library. Springer - Synthese Library. pp. 111-134.
    To help bridge the explanatory gap of how normativity branched off into morality in the course of evolutionary history, I claim that morality is a form of social normativity, specifically a form of cultural normativity. Furthermore, with the origins of its behavioral capacities rooted in normative practice, morality should be considered as an exaptation, a secondary adaptation shaped through cultural selection and evolution. Cultural selection pressures differ across social groups, as well as various species. Empirical evidence has shown that animals (...)
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  33. The Acheulean Origins of Normativity.Ceri Shipton, Mark Nielsen & Fabio Di Vincenzo - 2021 - In Sean Allen-Hermanson Anton Killin (ed.), Explorations in Archaeology and Philosophy. Synthese Library. Springer Verlag. pp. 197-212.
    ‘Normativity’ refers to the human conformity to the behavioral modes of a society, which underpins diverse aspects of our behavior, including symbolism, cooperation, and morality. It has its developmental basis in overimitation, the uniquely human bias towards replicating the intentional actions of a demonstrator, regardless of their causal relevance. Using evidence from stone tool technology, we suggest that both overimitation and normativity have their evolutionary origins in the Acheulean cultural tradition. Overimitation can be seen in arbitrary biases in Acheulean toolmaking; (...)
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  34. Path-Bound Normativity and a Confucian Case of Historical Holism.Yujian Zheng - 2022 - Asian Philosophy 32 (2):215-235.
    I bring a new thesis of historical holism to bear on the well-known Mencius-Xunzi dispute about xing/性. The significance of doing so seems bi-directional: in the first direction, i.e. applying the...
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  35. Normativity in African Regional Relations.Frank Aragbonfoh Abumere - 2000 - Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.
    Combining moral philosophy, political philosophy, political theory, and international relations, this book explores the possibility of using normative international relations as a realistic resolution to the problem of domination of, and discrimination against, minorities, specifically or especially migrants on the African continent.
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  36. The Ethical Self in the Later Foucault: the Question of Normativity.Gavin Rae - forthcoming - Sophia:1-23.
    Michel’s Foucault’s later work has been the subject of much critical interest regarding the question of whether it provides a normative stance that prescribes how the self ought to act. Having first outlined the nature of the debate, I engage with Foucault’s comparative analysis of the ethical systems of ancient Greeks and Christianity to show that he holds that the former maintains that the ethical subject was premised not on adherence to a priori rules as in Christianity, but from and (...)
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  37. 5. Deleuze, Values, and Normativity.Nathan Jun - 2011 - In Nathan Jun & Daniel W. Smith (eds.), Deleuze and Ethics. Edinburgh University Press. pp. 89-107.
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  38. The ‘Is’ and the ‘Ought’ of the Animal Organism: Hegel’s Account of Biological Normativity.Luca Corti - 2022 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 44 (2):1-22.
    This paper investigates Hegel’s account of the animal organism as it is presented in the Philosophy of Nature, with a special focus on its normative implications. I argue that the notion of “organisation” is fundamental to Hegel’s theory of animal normativity. The paper starts by showing how a Hegelian approach takes up the scientific image of organism and assigns a basic explanatory role to the notion of “organisation” in its understanding living beings. Moving from this premise, the paper turns to (...)
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  39. Ginsborg’s Reading of Wittgenstein on Rules and Normativity.Gary Ebbs - forthcoming - Wiley: Philosophical Investigations.
    Philosophical Investigations, EarlyView.
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  40. Kant, Frege, and the Normativity of Logic: MacFarlane's Argument for Common Ground.Tyke Nunez - 2022 - Wiley: European Journal of Philosophy 29 (4).
    European Journal of Philosophy, Volume 29, Issue 4, Page 988-1009, December 2021.
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  41. Alston, Aristotle, and Epistemic Normativity.Benjamin W. McCraw - 2022 - Logos and Episteme 13 (1):75-92.
    Alston argues that there is no such thing as a single concept of epistemic justification. Instead, there is an irreducible plurality of epistemically valuable features of beliefs: ‘epistemic desiderata.’ I argue that this approach is problematic for meta-epistemological reasons. How, for instance, do we characterize epistemic evaluation and do we do we go about it if there’s no theoretical unity to epistemology? Alston’s response is to ground all epistemic desiderata, thereby unifying epistemology, in truth and truth-conduciveness. I argue that this (...)
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  42. Rationality and Normativity.John Brunero - forthcoming - In International Encyclopedia of Ethics.
    This entry considers the question of whether rationality is normative; that is, the question of whether one always ought (or, more weakly, has a reason) to be rational. It first distinguishes substantive from structural rationality, noting how structural rationality presents a more serious challenge to the thesis that rationality is normative. It then considers the plausibility of skepticism about structural rationality, and notes some problems facing such skepticism. However, if we are not skeptics about structural requirements, we face the task (...)
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  43. Pluralism and Normativity in Truth and Logic.Gila Sher - 2020 - American Philosophical Quarterly 57:337-350.
    In this paper I investigate how differences in approach to truth and logic (in particular, a deflationist vs. a substantivist approach to these fields) affect philosophers’ views concerning pluralism and normativity in these fields. My perspective on truth and logic is largely epistemic, focusing on the role of truth in knowledge (rather than on the use of the words “true” and “truth” in natural language), and my reference group includes Carnap (1934), Harman (1986), Horwich (1990), Wright (1992), Beall and Restall (...)
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  44. Robust Normativity, Morality, and Legal Positivism.David Plunkett - 2019 - In David Plunkett, Scott Shapiro & Kevin Toh (eds.), Dimensions of Normativity: New Essays on Metaethics and Jurisprudence. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 105-136.
    This chapter discusses two different issues about the relationship between legal positivism and robust normativity (understood as the most authoritative kind of normativity to which we appeal). First, the chapter argues that, in many contexts when discussing “legal positivism” and “legal antipositivism”, the discussion should be shifted from whether legal facts are ultimately partly grounded in moral facts to whether they are ultimately partly grounded in robustly normative facts. Second, the chapter explores an important difference within the kinds of arguments (...)
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  45. Sergio Cremaschi, Normativity within the Bounds of Plural Reasons. The Applied Ethics Revolution. [REVIEW]Sergio Filippo Magni - 2008 - Iride 21 (54):497-498.
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  46. Morally-Demanding Infinite Responsibility: The Supererogatory Attitude of Levinasian Normativity.Julio Andrade - 2021 - Springer Verlag.
    This book presents a conceptual mapping of supererogation in the analytic moral philosophical tradition. It first asks whether supererogation can be conceptualised in the absence of obligation or duty and then makes the case that it can be. It does so by enlisting the resources of the continental tradition, specifically using the work of Emmanuel Levinas and his notion of infinite responsibility. In so doing the book contributes to the ongoing efforts to create a common ethical terminology between the analytic (...)
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  47. Reasons, Normativity, and Value in Aesthetics.Alex King - 2022 - Philosophy Compass 17 (1):1-17.
    Discussions of aesthetic reasons and normativity are becoming increasingly popular. This piece outlines six basic questions about aesthetic reasons, normativity, and value and discusses the space of possible answers to these questions. I divide the terrain into two groups of three questions each. First are questions about the shape of aesthetic reasons: what they favour, how strong they are, and where they come from. Second are relational questions about how aesthetic reasons fit into the wider normative landscape: whether they are (...)
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  48. Concepts, Normativity, and Self-Knowledge. On Ginsborg's Conception of Primitive Normativity.David Lauer - 2021 - In Christoph Demmerling & Dirk Schröder (eds.), Concepts in Thought, Action, and Perception. London, New York: Routledge. pp. 117-138.
    In a series of intriguing and far-reaching papers, Hannah Ginsborg introduced the notion of “primitive normativity” as the cornerstone of a novel account of the normativity of concepts, thought, and meaning. Her account is supposed to steer a middle course between what she regards as the two horns of a dilemma first laid out by Saul Kripke in his seminal reading of Wittgenstein’s discussion of rule-following. I propose to investigate Ginsborg’s conception. I begin by establishing the conceptual relations between the (...)
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  49. Normativity, Facts, and Values.Rosaria Egidi, Mario De Caro & Massimo Dell'Utri (eds.) - 2003 - Quodlibet.
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  50. Still Committed to the Normativity of Folk Psychology.Alireza Kazemi - 2021 - Philosophical Explorations 25 (1):58-74.
    In what sense can one claim that intentional explanations are essentially normative, given that people’s actions and thinking are replete with various irrationalities, yet are still pretty well exp...
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