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Practical Reality

Oxford University Press (2000)

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  1. Can Animals Act For Reasons?Hans-Johann Glock - 2009 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 52 (3):232-254.
    This essay argues that non-linguistic animals qualify not just for externalist notions of rationality (maximizing biological fitness or utility), but also for internal ones. They can act for reasons in several senses: their behaviour is subject to intentional explanations, they can act in the light of reasons - provided that the latter are conceived as objective facts rather than subjective mental states - and they can deliberate. Finally, even if they could not, it would still be misguided to maintain that (...)
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  • Why Animals Can't Act.Ralf Stoecker - 2009 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 52 (3):255-271.
    Given the many marvelous things animals can do and moreover the success we have in employing the intentional stance towards animals, it seems to be almost unthinkable to say that animals could not act at all. Nonetheless, this is exactly what I argue for. I claim that strictly speaking there is no animal action, only behaviour. I defend this claim in three steps. Firstly, I recapitulate some of the weighty grounds that speak in favour of animal agency. Secondly, I explain (...)
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  • Internal Reasons and Practical Limits on Rational Deliberation.Carolyn Mason - 2006 - Philosophical Explorations 9 (2):163 – 177.
    Could someone who wants a gin and tonic have a normative reason to drink petrol and tonic? Bernard Williams and Michael Smith both say, 'No'. They argue that what an agent has normative reason to do is determined by rational deliberation that involves correcting the agent's beliefs and current motivations. On such an account of normative reasons, an agent who is motivated to act in some way due to a false belief does not have reason to act in that way. (...)
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  • Limited Engagements and Narrative Extensions.Daniel D. Hutto - 2008 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 16 (3):419 – 444.
    E-approaches to the mind stress the embodied, embedded and enactive nature of mental phenomena. In their more radical, non-representational variants these approaches offer innovative and powerful new ways of understanding fundamental modes of intersubjective social interaction: I-approaches. While promising, E and I accounts have natural limits. In particular, they are unable to explain human competence in making sense of reasons for actions in folk-psychological terms. In this paper I outline the core features of the 'Narrative Practice Hypothesis' (NPH), showing how (...)
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  • Still Waiting for a Plausible Humean Theory of Reasons.Nicholas Shackel - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 167 (3):607-633.
    In his important recent book Schroeder proposes a Humean theory of reasons that he calls hypotheticalism. His rigourous account of the weight of reasons is crucial to his theory, both as an element of the theory and constituting his defence to powerful standard objections to Humean theories of reasons. In this paper I examine that rigourous account and show it to face problems of vacuity and consonance. There are technical resources that may be brought to bear on the problem of (...)
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  • Corporate Responsibility and Judgment Aggregation.Frank Hindriks - 2009 - Economics and Philosophy 25 (2):161-177.
    Paradoxical results concerning judgment aggregation have recently been invoked to defend the thesis that a corporate agent can be morally responsible for a decision without any of its individual members bearing such responsibility. I contend that the arguments offered for this irreducibility thesis are inconclusive. They do not pay enough attention to how we evaluate individual moral responsibility, in particular not to the role that a flawed assessment of the normative reasons that bear on the issue to be decided on (...)
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  • Introduction: Varieties of Disjunctivism.Adrian Haddock & Fiona Macpherson - 2008 - In Adrian Haddock & Fiona Macpherson (eds.), Disjunctivism: Perception, Action, Knowledge. Oxford University Press.
    Inspired by the writings of J. M. Hinton (1967a, 1967b, 1973), but ushered into the mainstream by Paul Snowdon (1980–1, 1990–1), John McDowell (1982, 1986), and M. G. F. Martin (2002, 2004, 2006), disjunctivism is currently discussed, advocated, and opposed in the philosophy of perception, the theory of knowledge, the theory of practical reason, and the philosophy of action. But what is disjunctivism?
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  • What Ought Probably Means, and Why You Can’T Detach It.Stephen Finlay - 2010 - Synthese 177 (1):67 - 89.
    Some intuitive normative principles raise vexing 'detaching problems' by their failure to license modus ponens. I examine three such principles (a self-reliance principle and two different instrumental principles) and recent stategies employed to resolve their detaching problems. I show that solving these problems necessitates postulating an indefinitely large number of senses for 'ought'. The semantics for 'ought' that is standard in linguistics offers a unifying strategy for solving these problems, but I argue that an alternative approach combining an end-relational theory (...)
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  • Reasons as Right-Makers.Laura Schroeter & François Schroeter - 2009 - Philosophical Explorations 12 (3):279-296.
    This paper sketches a right-maker account of normative practical reasons along functionalist lines. The approach is contrasted with other similar accounts, in particular John Broome's analysis of reasons as explanations of oughts.
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  • False Consciousness of Intentional Psychology.Katarzyna Paprzycka - 2002 - Philosophical Psychology 15 (3):271-295.
    According to explanatory individualism, every action must be explained in terms of an agent's desire. According to explanatory nonindividualism, we sometimes act on our desires, but it is also possible for us to act on others' desires without acting on desires of our own. While explanatory nonindividualism has guided the thinking of many social scientists, it is considered to be incoherent by most philosophers of mind who insist that actions must be explained ultimately in terms of some desire of the (...)
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  • Defending the Wide-Scope Approach to Instrumental Reason.Jonathan Way - 2010 - Philosophical Studies 147 (2):213 - 233.
    The Wide-Scope approach to instrumental reason holds that the requirement to intend the necessary means to your ends should be understood as a requirement to either intend the means, or else not intend the end. In this paper I explain and defend a neglected version of this approach. I argue that three serious objections to Wide-Scope accounts turn on a certain assumption about the nature of the reasons that ground the Wide-Scope requirement. The version of the Wide-Scope approach defended here (...)
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  • Reasons as Premises of Good Reasoning.Jonathan Way - 2017 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 98 (2).
    Many philosophers have been attracted to the view that reasons are premises of good reasoning – that reasons to φ are premises of good reasoning towards φ-ing. However, while this reasoning view is indeed attractive, it faces a problem accommodating outweighed reasons. In this article, I argue that the standard solution to this problem is unsuccessful and propose an alternative, which draws on the idea that good patterns of reasoning can be defeasible. I conclude by drawing out implications for the (...)
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  • The Normativity of Rationality.Jonathan Way - 2010 - Philosophy Compass 5 (12):1057-1068.
    This article is an introduction to the recent debate about whether rationality is normative – that is, very roughly, about whether we should have attitudes which fit together in a coherent way. I begin by explaining an initial problem – the “detaching problem” – that arises on the assumption that we should have coherent attitudes. I then explain the prominent “wide-scope” solution to this problem, and some of the central objections to it. I end by considering the options that arise (...)
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  • Explaining the Instrumental Principle.Jonathan Way - 2012 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 90 (3):487-506.
    The Wide-Scope view of instrumental reason holds that you should not intend an end without also intending what you believe to be the necessary means. This, the Wide-Scoper claims, provides the best account of why failing to intend the believed means to your end is a rational failing. But Wide-Scopers have struggled to meet a simple Explanatory Challenge: why shouldn't you intend an end without intending the necessary means? What reason is there not to do so? In the first half (...)
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  • Having Reasons.Mark Schroeder - 2008 - Philosophical Studies 139 (1):57 - 71.
    What is it to have a reason? According to one common idea, the "Factoring Account", you have a reason to do A when there is a reason for you to do A which you have--which is somehow in your possession or grasp. In this paper, I argue that this common idea is false. But though my arguments are based on the practical case, the implications of this are likely to be greatest in epistemology: for the pitfalls we fall into when (...)
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  • Buck-Passers' Negative Thesis.Mark Schroeder - 2009 - Philosophical Explorations 12 (3):341-347.
    Buck-passers about value accept two theses about value, a negative thesis and a positive. The negative thesis is that the fact that something is valuable is not itself a reason to promote or appreciate it. The positive thesis is that the fact that something is valuable consists in the fact that there are other reasons to promote or appreciate it. Buck-passers suppose that the negative thesis follows from the positive one, and sometimes insist on it as if it is the (...)
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  • The Scope of Instrumental Reason.Mark Schroeder - 2004 - Philosophical Perspectives 18 (1):337–364.
    Allow me to rehearse a familiar scenario. We all know that which ends you have has something to do with what you ought to do. If Ronnie is keen on dancing but Bradley can’t stand it, then the fact that there will be dancing at the party tonight affects what Ronnie and Bradley ought to do in different ways. In short, (HI) you ought, if you have the end, to take the means. But now trouble looms: what if you have (...)
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  • Non-Distributive Blameworthiness.Thomas H. Smith - 2009 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 109 (1pt1):31-60.
    I adapt an old example of Frank Jackson's, in order to show that it is not only possible that actions with different individual agents are sub-optimal when each is not, but that they are impermissible when each is not, and blameworthy when each is not.
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  • Reason Explanation and the Second-Person Perspective.Johannes Roessler - 2014 - Philosophical Explorations 17 (3):346-357.
    Reason explanation and the second-person perspective. . ???aop.label???. doi: 10.1080/13869795.2014.946954.
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  • The Possibility of Love Independent Reasons.Jussi Suikkanen - 2011 - Essays in Philosophy 12 (1):32-54.
    This article is a critical examination of Harry Frankfurt's view of reasons. Frankfurt has argued in a number of recent books for the view which holds that all practical reasons are a function of what we love. This article examines Frankfurt's key argument for this claim. It uses the analogy of a similar argument in the domain of epistemic reasons to show where Frankfurt's argument fails. It also argues that there are a number of plausible views about practical reasons that (...)
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  • What's Wrong with Moore's Argument?James Pryor - 2004 - Philosophical Issues 14 (1):349–378.
    Something about this argument sounds funny. As we’ll see, though, it takes some care to identify exactly what Moore has done wrong. Iwill assume that Moore knows premise (2) to be true. One could inquire into how he knows it, and whether that knowledge can be defeated; but Iwon’t. I’ll focus instead on what epistemic relations Moore has to premise (1) and to his conclusion (3). It may matter which epistemic relations we choose to consider. Some philosophers will diagnose Moore’s (...)
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  • The Structure of Instrumental Practical Reasoning.Christian Miller - 2007 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 75 (1):1–40.
    The view to be defended in this paper is intended to be a novel and compelling model of instrumental practical reasoning, reasoning aimed at determining how to act in order to achieve a given end in a certain set of circumstances. On standard views of instrumental reasoning, the end in question is the object of a particular desire that the agent has, a desire which, when combined with the agent’s beliefs about what means are available to him or her in (...)
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  • The Ontology of Epistemic Reasons.John Turri - 2009 - Noûs 43 (3):490-512.
    Epistemic reasons are mental states. They are not propositions or non-mental facts. The discussion proceeds as follows. Section 1 introduces the topic. Section 2 gives two concrete examples of how our topic directly affects the internalism/externalism debate in normative epistemology. Section 3 responds to an argument against the view that reasons are mental states. Section 4 presents two problems for the view that reasons are propositions. Section 5 presents two problems for the view that reasons are non-mental facts. Section 6 (...)
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  • Reasons for Action.Pamela Hieronymi - 2011 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 111 (3pt3):407-427.
    Donald Davidson opens ‘Actions, Reasons, and Causes’ by asking, ‘What is the relation between a reason and an action when the reason explains the action by giving the agent's reason for doing what he did?’ His answer has generated some confusion about reasons for action and made for some difficulty in understanding the place for the agent's own reasons for acting, in the explanation of an action. I offer here a different account of the explanation of action, one that, though (...)
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  • The Intrinsic Value of Sport: A Reply to Culbertson.Graham McFee - 2009 - Sport, Ethics and Philosophy 3 (1):19-29.
    Leon Culbertson's recent contribution, 'Does Sport Have Intrinsic Value?' objects to the account of the value of sport as intrinsic value I had developed in my Sport, Rules and Values ; in particular, as this occurs in my argument that the value of some sports resided in the possibility of their functioning as a moral laboratory. He identifies two accounts of intrinsic value; and shows that neither would fit my purposes seamlessly. He urges that my account of the place of (...)
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  • Minds and Morals.Sarah Sawyer - 2014 - Philosophical Issues 24 (1):393-408.
    In this paper, I argue that an externalist theory of thought content provides the means to resolve two debates in moral philosophy. The first—that between judgement internalism and judgement externalism—concerns the question of whether there is a conceptual connection between moral judgement and motivation. The second—that between reasons internalism and reasons externalism—concerns the relationship between moral reasons and an agent's subjective motivational set. The resolutions essentially stem from the externalist claim that concepts can be grasped partially, and a new moral (...)
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  • Reasons and Entailment.Bart Streumer - 2007 - Erkenntnis 66 (3):353-374.
    What is the relation between entailment and reasons for belief? In this paper, I discuss several answers to this question, and I argue that these answers all face problems. I then propose the following answer: for all propositions p1,...,pn and q, if the conjunction of p1,..., and pn entails q, then there is a reason against a person's both believing that p1,..., and that pn and believing the negation of q. I argue that this answer avoids the problems that the (...)
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  • Moral Concepts: From Thickness to Response-Dependence. [REVIEW]Nenad Miščević - 2006 - Acta Analytica 21 (1):3-32.
    The paper examines three tenets of Dancy’s meta-ethics, finds them incompatible, and proposes a response-dependentist (or response-dispositional) solution. The first tenet is the central importance of thick concepts and properties. The second is that such concepts essentially involve response(s) of observers, which Dancy interprets in a way that fits the pattern of context-dependent resultance: thick concepts are well suited for the particularist grounding of moral theory. However, and this is the third tenet, in his earlier paper (1986) Dancy forcefully argues (...)
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  • Motivational Internalism.Christian Basil Miller - 2008 - Philosophical Studies 139 (2):233-255.
    Cases involving amoralists who no longer care about the institution of morality, together with cases of depression, listlessness, and exhaustion, have posed trouble in recent years for standard formulations of motivational internalism. In response, though, internalists have been willing to adopt narrower versions of the thesis which restrict it just to the motivational lives of those agents who are said to be in some way normal, practically rational, or virtuous. My goal in this paper is to offer a new set (...)
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  • The Majesty of Reason.Simon Blackburn - 2010 - Philosophy 85 (1):5-27.
    In this paper I contemplate two phenomena that have impressed theorists concerned with the domain of reasons and of what is now called ‘normativity’. One is the much-discussed ‘externality’ of reasons. According to this, reasons are just there, anyway. They exist whether or not agents take any notice of them. They do not only exist in the light of contingent desires or mere inclinations. They are ‘external’ not ‘internal’. They bear on us, even when through ignorance or wickedness we take (...)
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  • Deception and Evidence.Nicholas Silins - 2005 - Philosophical Perspectives 19 (1):375–404.
  • Facts, Ends, and Normative Reasons.Hallvard Lillehammer - 2010 - Journal of Ethics 14 (1):17-26.
    This paper is about the relationship between two widely accepted and apparently conflicting claims about how we should understand the notion of ‘reason giving’ invoked in theorising about reasons for action. According to the first claim, reasons are given by facts about the situation of agents. According to the second claim, reasons are given by ends. I argue that the apparent conflict between these two claims is less deep than is generally recognised.
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  • Desire-Based Theories of Reasons, Pleasure, and Welfare.Chris Heathwood - 2011 - Oxford Studies in Metaethics 6:79-106.
    One of the most important disputes in the foundations of ethics concerns the source of practical reasons. On the desire-based view, only one’s desires provide one with reasons to act. On the value-based view, reasons are instead provided by the objective evaluative facts, and never by our desires. Similarly, there are desire-based and non-desired-based theories about two other phenomena: pleasure and welfare. It has been argued, and is natural to think, that holding a desire-based theory about either pleasure or welfare (...)
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  • How to Unify Theories of Sensory Pleasure: An Adverbialist Proposal.Murat Aydede - 2014 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 5 (1):119-133.
    A lot of qualitatively very different sensations can be pleasant or unpleasant. The Felt-Quality Views that conceive of sensory affect as having an introspectively available common phenomenology or qualitative character face the “heterogeneity problem” of specifying what that qualitative common phenomenology is. In contrast, according to the Attitudinal Views, what is common to all pleasant or unpleasant sensations is that they are all “wanted” or “unwanted” in a certain sort of way. The commonality is explained not on the basis of (...)
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  • Logical Reasons.Pascal Engel - 2005 - Philosophical Explorations 8 (1):21 – 38.
    Simon Blackburn has shown that there is an analogy between the problem of moral motivation in ethics (how can moral reasons move us?) and the problem of what we might call the power of logical reasons (how can logical reasons move us, what is the force of the 'logical must?'). In this paper, I explore further the parallel between the internalism problem in ethics and the problem of the power of logical reasons, and defend a version of psychologism about reasons, (...)
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  • The Pitfalls of ‘Reasons’.Ralph Wedgwood - 2015 - Philosophical Issues 25 (1):123-143.
    Many philosophers working on the branches of philosophy that deal with the normative questions have adopted a " Reasons First" program. This paper criticizes the foundational assumptions of this program. In fact, there are many different concepts that can be expressed by the term 'reason' in English, none of which are any more fundamental than any others. Indeed, most of these concepts are not particularly fundamental in any interesting sense.
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  • Reasons for Belief.Hannah Ginsborg - 2006 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 72 (2):286 - 318.
    Davidson claims that nothing can count as a reason for a belief except another belief. This claim is challenged by McDowell, who holds that perceptual experiences can count as reasons for beliefs. I argue that McDowell fails to take account of a distinction between two different senses in which something can count as a reason for belief. While a non-doxastic experience can count as a reason for belief in one of the two senses, this is not the sense which is (...)
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  • Reasons and That‐Clauses.James Pryor - 2007 - Philosophical Issues 17 (1):217-244.
    What are reasons? For example, if you’re aware that your secretary plans to expose you, and you resign to avoid a scandal, what is your reason for resigning? Is your reason the fact that your secretary plans to expose you? If so, what kinds of facts are eligible to be reasons? Can merely possible facts be reasons (for actual subjects)? Can merely apparent facts? Or are reasons rather attitudes? Are your reasons for resigning your belief that your secretary plans to (...)
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  • Does Particularism Solve the Moral Problem?Kasper Lippert-rasmussen & Karsten Klint Jensen - 2002 - Philosophical Explorations 5 (2):125 – 140.
    Moral cognitivism, internalism about moral judgements, and Humeanism about motivating reasons all possess attractions.Yet they cannot all be true.This is the so-called moral problem. Dancy offers an interesting particularist response to the moral problem. However, we argue that this response, first, provides an inadequate basis for the distinction between motivating states and states necessary for motivation although not themselves motivators; second, draws no support from considerations about weakness of the will; and third, involves an implausible account of desire.We conclude that (...)
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  • Does Particularism Solve the Moral Problem?Kasper Lippert–Rasmussen & Karsten Klint Jensen - 2002 - Philosophical Explorations 5 (2):125-140.
    Moral cognitivism, internalism about moral judgements, and Humeanism about motivating reasons all possess attractions.Yet they cannot all be true.This is the so-called moral problem. Dancy offers an interesting particularist response to the moral problem. However, we argue that this response, first, provides an inadequate basis for the distinction between motivating states and states necessary for motivation although not themselves motivators; second, draws no support from considerations about weakness of the will; and third, involves an implausible account of desire.We conclude that (...)
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  • In Defence of State-Based Reasons to Intend.James Morauta - 2010 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 91 (2):208-228.
    A state-based reason for one to intend to perform an action F is a reason for one to intend to F which is not a reason for one to F. Are there any state-based reasons to intend? According to the Explanatory Argument, the answer is no, because state-based reasons do not satisfy a certain explanatory constraint. I argue that whether or not the constraint is correct, the Explanatory Argument is unsound, because state-based reasons do satisfy the constraint. The considerations that (...)
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  • A Very Good Reason to Reject the Buck-Passing Account.Alex Gregory - 2014 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 92 (2):287-303.
    This paper presents a new objection to the buck-passing account of value. I distinguish the buck-passing account of predicative value from the buck-passing account of attributive value. According to the latter, facts about attributive value reduce to facts about reasons and their weights. But since facts about reasons’ weights are themselves facts about attributive value, this account presupposes what it is supposed to explain. As part of this argument, I also argue against Mark Schroeder's recent account of the weights of (...)
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  • Does Sport Have Intrinsic Value?Leon Culbertson - 2008 - Sport, Ethics and Philosophy 2 (3):302 – 320.
    This paper considers the suggestion, central to McFee's (2004) moral laboratory argument, that sport is intrinsically valuable. McFee's position is outlined and critiqued and various interpretations of intrinsic value found in the philosophical literature are considered. In addition, Morgan's (2007) claim that sport is an appropriate final end is considered and partially accepted. The paper draws a number of terminological distinctions and concludes that sport does not have intrinsic value as traditionally conceived, but that this is of little consequence with (...)
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  • Particularism in Question: An Interview with Jonathan Dancy.Andreas Lind & Johan Brännmark - 2008 - Theoria 74 (1):3-17.
    Jonathan Dancy works within almost all fields of philosophy but is best known as the leading proponent of moral particularism. Particularism challenges “traditional” moral theories, such as Contractualism, Kantianism and Utilitarianism, in that it denies that moral thought and judgement relies upon, or is made possible by, a set of more or less well-defined, hierarchical principles. During the summer of 2006, the Philosophy Departments of Lund University (Sweden) and the University of Reading (England) began a series of exchanges to take (...)
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  • Humeanism, Psychologism, and the Normative Story. [REVIEW]Michael Smith - 2003 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 67 (2):460–467.
    Jonathan Dancy’s Practical Reality is, I think, best understood as an attempt to undermine our allegiance to these two purported constitutive claims about action. If we must think that psychological states figure in the explanation of action then, according to Dancy, we should suppose that those psychological states are beliefs rather than desire-belief pairs. Dancy thus prefers pure cognitivism to Humeanism. But in fact he thinks that we have no business accepting any form of psychologism in the first place; no (...)
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  • Reasons for Belief, Perception, and Reflective Knowledge.Alan Millar - 2014 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 88 (1):1-19.
    A conception of the relation between reasons for belief, justified belief, and knowledge is outlined on which a belief is justified, in the sense of being well-founded, only if there is an adequate reason to believe it, reasons to believe something are constituted by truths, and a reason to believe something justifies one in believing it only if it is constituted by a truth or truths that one knows. It is argued that, contrary to initial appearances, perceptual justification does not (...)
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  • Against Internalism.Kieran Setiya - 2004 - Noûs 38 (2):266–298.
    Argues that practical irrationality is akin to moral culpability: it is defective practical thought which one could legitimately have been expected to avoid. It is thus a mistake to draw too tight a connection between failure to be moved by reasons and practical irrationality (as in a certain kind of "internalism"): one's failure may be genuine, but not culpable, and therefore not irrational.
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  • Defeasibility And The Normative Grasp Of Context.Margaret Little & Mark Lance - 2004 - Erkenntnis 61 (2-3):435-455.
    In this article, we present an analysis of defeasible generalizations -- generalizations which are essentially exception-laden, yet genuinely explanatory -- in terms of various notions of privileged conditions. We argue that any plausible epistemology must make essential use of defeasible generalizations so understood. We also consider the epistemic significance of the sort of understanding of context that is required for understanding of explanatory defeasible generalizations on any topic.
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  • The Riddle of Aesthetic Principles.Vojko Strahovnik - 2004 - Acta Analytica 19 (33):189-208.
    The problem of aesthetic principles and that of the nature of aesthetic reasons get confronted. If aesthetic reasons play an important role in our aesthetic evaluations and judgments, then both some general aesthetic principles and rules could support them (aesthetic generalism) or again their nature may be particularistic (aesthetic particularism). A recent argument in support of aesthetic generalism as proposed by Oliver Conolly and Bashshar Haydar is presented and criticized for its misapprehension of particularism. Their position of irreversible aesthetic generalism (...)
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  • Does Rationality Give Us Reasons?John Broome - 2005 - Philosophical Issues 15 (1):321–337.