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Moral Realism as a Moral Doctrine

Wiley-Blackwell (2009)

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  1. Normative Wahrheiten Ohne Ontologie? Derek Parfit Und der „Neue“ Non-Naturalismus.Markus Rüther - 2016 - Zeitschrift Für Praktische Philosophie 3 (2):187-220.
    Das Thema des Beitrages bildet der „neue“ Non-Naturalismus, welcher exemplarisch am metaethischen Ansatz von Derek Parfit untersucht wird. Parfits Ansatz zeichnet sich durch das Ziel aus, eine neue Theorienoption zu ermöglichen, die einerseits von der Existenz normativer Tatsachen ausgeht, ohne jedoch andererseits auf die ontologischen Verpflichtungen der klassischen Vertreter des Non-Naturalismus festgelegt zu sein. Hierfür wird der Begriff der „nicht-ontologischen Existenz“ eingeführt und von robusten ontologischen Existenzweisen unterschieden. In diesem Beitrag wird dafür argumentiert, dass Parfit bisher nur Explikationen dieses zentralen (...)
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  • Deflationism and Truthmaking.Matthew Simpson - 2019 - Synthese 198 (4):3157-3181.
    This paper is about the relationship between truthmaking—one of the pillars of contemporary metaphysics—and deflationism about truth—one of the main contenders in the debate about truth, and a key component of the broad anti-metaphysical philosophical approach known as pragmatism. Many philosophers have argued that deflationism and truthmaking are incompatible or in conflict in some interesting way. Some take this to count against deflationism, others to count against truthmaking. In this paper I argue that deflationism and truthmaking are compatible in most (...)
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  • Attributing Error Without Taking a Stand.Caleb Perl & Mark Schroeder - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (6):1453-1471.
    Moral error theory is the doctrine that our first-order moral commitments are pervaded by systematic error. It has been objected that this makes the error theory itself a position in first-order moral theory that should be judged by the standards of competing first-order moral theories :87–139, 1996) and Kramer. Kramer: “the objectivity of ethics is itself an ethical matter that rests primarily on ethical considerations. It is not something that can adequately be contested or confirmed through non-ethical reasoning” [2009, 1]). (...)
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  • Is There a Supervenience Problem for Robust Moral Realism?Jamie Dreier - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (6):1391-1408.
    The paper describes the problem for robust moral realism of explaining the supervenience of the moral on the non-moral, and examines five objections to the argument: The moral does not supervene on the descriptive, because we may owe different obligations to duplicates. If the supervenience thesis is repaired to block, it becomes trivial and easy to explain. Supervenience is a moral doctrine and should get an explanation from within normative ethics rather than metaethics. Supervenience is a conceptual truth and should (...)
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  • Can the Empirical Sciences Contribute to the Moral Realism/Anti-Realism Debate?Thomas Pölzler - 2018 - Synthese 195 (11):4907-4930.
    An increasing number of moral realists and anti-realists have recently attempted to support their views by appeal to science. Arguments of this kind are typically criticized on the object-level. In addition, however, one occasionally also comes across a more sweeping metatheoretical skepticism. Scientific contributions to the question of the existence of objective moral truths, it is claimed, are impossible in principle; most prominently, because such arguments impermissibly derive normative from descriptive propositions, such arguments beg the question against non-naturalist moral realism, (...)
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  • Against Quietist Normative Realism.Tristram McPherson - 2011 - Philosophical Studies 154 (2):223-240.
    Recently, some philosophers have suggested that a form of robust realism about ethics, or normativity more generally, does not face a significant explanatory burden in metaphysics. I call this view metaphysically quietist normative realism . This paper argues that while this view can appear to constitute an attractive alternative to more traditional forms of normative realism, it cannot deliver on this promise. I examine Scanlon’s attempt to defend such a quietist realism, and argue that rather than silencing metaphysical questions about (...)
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  • Are Normative Properties Descriptive Properties?Bart Streumer - 2011 - Philosophical Studies 154 (3):325 - 348.
    Some philosophers think that normative properties are identical to descriptive properties. In this paper, I argue that this entails that it is possible to say which descriptive properties normative properties are identical to. I argue that Frank Jackson's argument to show that this is possible fails, and that the objections to this argument show that it is impossible to say which descriptive properties normative properties are identical to. I conclude that normative properties are not identical to descriptive properties. I then (...)
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  • What Do You Mean “This Isn’T the Question”?David Enoch & Tristram McPherson - 2017 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 47 (6):820-840.
    This is a contribution to the symposium on Tim Scanlon’s Being Realistic about Reasons. We have two aims here: First, we ask for more details about Scanlon’s meta-metaphysical view, showing problems with salient clarifications. And second, we raise independent objections to the view – to its explanatory productivity, its distinctness, and the argumentative support it enjoys.
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  • How To Be a Moral Platonist.Knut Olav Skarsune - 2015 - Oxford Studies in Metaethics (10).
    Contrary to popular opinion, non-natural realism can explain both why normative properties supervene on descriptive properties, and why this pattern is analytic. The explanation proceeds by positing a subtle polysemy in normative predicates like “good”. Such predicates express slightly different senses when they are applied to particulars (like Florence Nightingale) and to kinds (like altruism). The former sense, “goodPAR”, can be defined in terms of the latter, “goodKIN”, as follows: x is goodPAR iff there is a kind K such that (...)
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  • Review of The Social Psychology of Morality. [REVIEW]Michael Klenk - 2016 - Metapsychology Online 20 (48):1-8.
    If you put chimpanzees from different communities together you can expect mayhem - they are not keen on treating each other nicely. There is closely related species of apes, however, whose members have countless encounters with unrelated specimen on a daily basis and yet almost all get through the day in one piece - that species is us, homo sapiens. But what makes us get along, most of the time? Morality as such is, perhaps surprisingly, not a mainstream research topic (...)
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  • Moral Error Theory: History, Critique, Defence.Jonas Olson - 2014 - Oxford University Press.
    Jonas Olson presents a critical survey of moral error theory, the view that there are no moral facts and so all moral claims are false. Part I explores the historical context of the debate; Part II assesses J. L. Mackie's famous arguments; Part III defends error theory against challenges and considers its implications for our moral thinking.
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  • The Metaphysics of Reasons.Jonas Olson - 2018 - In Daniel Star (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Reasons and Normativity. New York, USA: Oxford University Press. pp. 255-274.
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  • Is There a Good Moral Argument Against Moral Realism?Camil Golub - 2021 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 24 (1):151-164.
    It has been argued that there is something morally objectionable about moral realism: for instance, according to realism, we are justified in believing that genocide is wrong only if a certain moral fact obtains, but it is objectionable to hold our moral commitments hostage to metaphysics in this way. In this paper, I argue that no version of this moral argument against realism is likely to succeed. More precisely, minimal realism―the kind of realism on which realist theses are understood as (...)
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  • Moral Judgments, Cognitivism and the Dispositional Nature of Belief: Why Moral Peer Intransigence is Intelligible.John Eriksson & Marco Tiozzo - 2021 - Philosophia 49 (4):1753-1766.
    Richard Rowland has recently argued that considerations based on moral disagreement between epistemic peers give us reason to think that cognitivism about moral judgments, i.e., the thesis that moral judgments are beliefs, is false. The novelty of Rowland’s argument is to tweak the problem descriptively, i.e., not focusing on what one ought to do, but on what disputants actually do in the light of peer disagreement. The basic idea is that moral peer disagreement is intelligible. However, if moral judgments were (...)
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  • On the Possibility of Wholesale Moral Error.Farbod Akhlaghi - 2021 - Ratio 34 (3):236-247.
    The moral error theory, it seems, could be true. The mere possibility of its truth might also seem inconsequential. But it is not. For, I argue, there is a sense in which the moral error theory is possible that generates an argument against both non‐cognitivism and moral naturalism. I argue that it is an epistemic possibility that morality is subject to some form of wholesale error of the kind that would make the moral error theory true. Denying this possibility has (...)
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  • Saving Which Differences? Creeping Minimalism and Disagreement.Christine Tiefensee - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (7):1905-1921.
    Much thought has been devoted to how metaethical disagreement between moral realism and expressivism can be saved once minimalism starts creeping. Very little thought has been given to how creeping minimalism affects error-theories’ disagreement with their metaethical competitors. The reason for this omission, I suspect, is found in the belief that whilst locating distinctive moral realist and expressivist positions within a minimalist landscape poses a severe challenge, no such difficulties are encountered when differentiating error-theories from moral realism and expressivism. In (...)
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  • What is at Stake in Debates Among Normative Realists?Tristram McPherson - 2015 - Noûs 49 (1):123-146.
    One class of central debates between normative realists appears to concern whether we should be naturalists or reductionists about the normative. However, metaethical discussion of naturalism and reduction is often inconsistent, murky, or uninformative. This can make it hard to see why commitments relative to these metaphysical categories should matter to normative realists. This paper aims to clarify the nature of these categories, and their significance in debates between normative realists. I develop and defend what I call the joint-carving taxonomy, (...)
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  • Michael Moore on Torture, Morality, and Law.Matthew H. Kramer - 2012 - Ratio Juris 25 (4):472-495.
    During the past few decades, Michael Moore has written incisively on an array of matters concerning the relationships between law and morality. While reflecting on those relationships, he has plumbed the nature of morality itself in impressive depth. Among the topics which he has addressed, the problem of torture has been prominent and controversial. It is a problem, moreover, that has led to some of his most searching enquiries into the character of moral obligations. In the present essay I take (...)
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  • There’s Nothing Quasi About Quasi-Realism: Moral Realism as a Moral Doctrine.Matthew Kramer - 2017 - The Journal of Ethics 21 (2):185-212.
    This paper seeks to clarify and defend the proposition that moral realism is best elaborated as a moral doctrine. I begin by upholding Ronald Dworkin’s anti-Archimedean critique of the error theory against some strictures by Michael Smith, and I then briefly suggest how a proponent of moral realism as a moral doctrine would respond to Smith’s defense of the Archimedeanism of expressivism. Thereafter, this paper moves to its chief endeavor. By differentiating clearly between expressivism and quasi-realism, the paper highlights both (...)
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  • In Defence of Instrumentalism About Epistemic Normativity.Christopher Cowie - 2014 - Synthese 191 (16):4003-4017.
    According to epistemic instrumentalists the normativity of evidence for belief is best explained in terms of the practical utility of forming evidentially supported beliefs. Traditional arguments for instrumentalism—arguments based on naturalism and motivation—lack suasive force against opponents. A new argument for the view—the Argument from Coincidence—is presented. The argument shows that only instrumentalists can avoid positing an embarrassing coincidence between the practical value of believing in accordance with one’s evidence, and the existence of reasons so to believe. Responses are considered (...)
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  • Naturalistic Moral Realism and Moral Disagreement: David Copp’s Account.Mark Hanin - 2012 - Res Publica 18 (4):283-301.
    To enhance the plausibility of naturalistic moral realism, David Copp develops an argument from epistemic defeaters aiming to show that strongly a priori synthetic moral truths do not exist. In making a case for the non-naturalistic position, I locate Copp’s account within the wider literature on peer disagreement; I identify key points of divergence between Copp’s doctrine and conciliatorist doctrines; I introduce the notion of ‘minimal moral competence’; I contend that some plausible benchmarks for minimal moral competence are grounded in (...)
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  • Expressivism, Anti-Archimedeanism and Supervenience.Christine Tiefensee - 2014 - Res Publica 20 (2):163-181.
    Metaethics is traditionally understood as a non-moral discipline that examines moral judgements from a standpoint outside of ethics. This orthodox understanding has recently come under pressure from anti-Archimedeans, such as Ronald Dworkin and Matthew Kramer, who proclaim that rather than assessing morality from an external perspective, metaethical theses are themselves substantive moral claims. In this paper, I scrutinise this anti-Archimedean challenge as applied to the metaethical position of expressivism. More precisely, I examine the claim that expressivists do not avoid moral (...)
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  • Metaethical Minimalism: A Demarcation, Defense, and Development.Aaron Franklin - 2020 - Dissertation, University of California, Santa Cruz
    The aim of this work is to demarcate, develop, and defend the commitments and consequences of metaethical minimalism. Very roughly, this is the position that a commitment to objective moral truths does not require any accompanying ontological commitments. While there are few, if any, who call themselves “metaethical minimalists”, I endeavor to uncover existing articulations of metaethical minimalism which have been presented under different names, attempting to identify the common ground between them. As I interpret the position, all metaethical minimalists (...)
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  • Moral Vagueness: A Dilemma for Non-Naturalism.Cristian Constantinescu - 2014 - In Russ Shafer-Landau (ed.), Oxford Studies in Metaethics: Volume 9. Oxford University Press. pp. 152-185.
    In this paper I explore the implications of moral vagueness (viz., the vagueness of moral predicates) for non-naturalist metaethical theories like those recently championed by Shafer-Landau, Parfit, and others. I characterise non-naturalism in terms of its commitment to 7 theses: Cognitivism, Correspondence, Atomism, Objectivism, Supervenience, Non-reductivism, and Rationalism. I start by offering a number of reasons for thinking that moral predicates are vague in the same way in which ‘red’, ‘tall’, and ‘heap’ are said to be. I then argue that (...)
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  • Melis Erdur’s Moral Argument Against Moral Realism.Joshua Blanchard - 2019 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 22 (2):371-377.
    In a previous volume of Ethical Theory & Moral Practice, Melis Erdur defends the provocative claim that postulating a stance-independent ground for morality constitutes a substantive moral mistake that is isomorphic to the substantive moral mistake that many realists attribute to antirealists. In this discussion paper I reconstruct Erdur’s argument and raise two objections to the general framework in which it arises. I close by explaining why rejecting Erdur’s approach doesn’t preclude normative criticism of metaethical theories.
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  • Una defensa Del positivismo jurídico.Roberto M. Jiménez Cano - 2013 - Isonomía. Revista de Teoría y Filosofía Del Derecho 39:83-126.
    El presente trabajo trata de hacer una defensa de una particular versión de positivismo jurídico excluyente como teoría que mejor describe el derecho y sus referencias a la moral. Aunque se reivindica la tesis de las fuentes como la tesis iuspositivista por excelencia, el quid de la defensa se asienta sobre un análisis de los diferentes tipos y conceptos de moral que se consideran relevantes a la hora de la identificación del derecho. La posibilidad del error en el descubrimiento de (...)
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  • Trusting Our Own Minds.Dennis Kalde - 2019 - Dissertation, Ludwig Maximilians Universität, München
    When it comes to the metaethical task of explaining and making sense of what it is that we are doing while doing ethics, the subject of moral objectivity occupies an important and special place within that task. Thus, it is often agreed that being able to explain and justify the objective features of common moral practice is one of if not the most important task for any metaethical theory to undertake. In this dissertation, I tackle the issue of ethical objectivity (...)
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  • Distinguishing Value-Neutrality From Value-Independence: Toward a New Disentangling Strategy for Moral Epistemology.Lubomira V. Radoilska - forthcoming - In Mark McBride & Visa A. J. Kurki (eds.), Without Trimmings: The Legal, Moral and Political Philosophy of Matthew Kramer.
    This chapter outlines a new disentangling strategy for moral epistemology. It builds on the fundamental distinction between value-neutrality and value-independence as two separate aspects of methodological austerity introduced by Matthew Kramer. This type of conceptual analysis is then applied to two major challenges in moral epistemology: globalised scepticism and debate fragmentation. Both challenges arise from collapsing the fact/value dichotomy. They can be addressed by comprehensive disentangling that runs along both dimensions – value neutrality vs. value non-neutrality and value independence vs. (...)
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  • Ethical Non-Naturalism and the Metaphysics of Supervenience.Tristram McPherson - 2012 - In Oxford Studies in Metaethics Vol 7. pp. 205.
    It is widely accepted that the ethical supervenes on the natural, where this is roughly the claim that it is impossible for two circumstances to be identical in all natural respects, but different in their ethical respects. This chapter refines and defends the traditional thought that this fact poses a significant challenge to ethical non-naturalism, a view on which ethical properties are fundamentally different in kind from natural properties. The challenge can be encapsulated in three core claims which the chapter (...)
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  • Characterizing Moral Realism.Jude Edeh - forthcoming - Symposion. Theoretical and Applied Inquiries in Philosophy and Social Sciences.
    Jude Edeh ABSTRACT: The challenge faced with the proliferation of various kinds of cognitivism is the difficulty of providing a straightforward characterization of moral realism and antirealism. In light of this tension, I identified a problem in Sayre-McCord’s way of specifying the criteria of moral realism. Furthermore, I provided a framework that characterized the moral ….
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  • Detached Statements.Mark McBride - 2018 - Crítica. Revista Hispanoamericana de Filosofía 49 (147):75-89.
    Joseph Raz has introduced an interesting class of statements —detached statements— into the philosophical lexicon. In brief, such statements are normative statements, yet the speaker does not, in so uttering them, express or convey acceptance of the point of view of the hearer to whom they are addressed. I propose to offer a novel analysis of such statements. In brief, such statements will be analysed as wide-scope normative conditionals.
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  • Cognitivism and Metaphysical Weight: A Dilemma for Relaxed Realism.Annika Böddeling - 2020 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 98 (3):546-559.
    Another view has entered the metaethical debate—relaxed realism [Dworkin 1996; Parfit 2011; Scanlon 2014]. Relaxed realists claim that there are irreducible moral properties, but seek to avoid the...
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  • A Moral Argument Against Moral Realism.Melis Erdur - 2016 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 19 (3):591-602.
    If what is morally right or wrong were ultimately a function of our opinions, then even such reprehensible actions as genocide and slavery would be morally right, had we approved of them. Many moral philosophers find this conclusion objectionably permissive, and to avoid it they posit a moral reality that exists independently of what anyone thinks. The notion of an independent moral reality has been subjected to meticulous metaphysical, epistemological and semantic criticism, but it is hardly ever examined from a (...)
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  • Normative Commitments in Metanormative Theory.Pekka Väyrynen - 2019 - In Jussi Suikkanen & Antti Kauppinen (eds.), Methodology and Moral Philosophy. Routledge. pp. 193-213.
    First-order normative theories concerning what’s right and wrong, good and bad, etc. and metanormative theories concerning the nature of first-order normative thought and talk are widely regarded as independent theoretical enterprises. This paper argues that several debates in metanormative theory involve views that have first-order normative implications, even as the implications in question may not be immediately recognizable as normative. I first make my claim more precise by outlining a general recipe for generating this result. I then apply this recipe (...)
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  • Semantic Blindness and Error Theorizing for the Ambiguity Theory of ‘Knows’.Mark Satta - 2018 - Analysis 78 (2):275-284.
    The ambiguity theory of ‘knows’ is the view that ‘knows’ and its cognates have more than one propositional sense – i.e. more than one sense that can properly be used in ‘knows that’ etc. constructions. Given that most of us are ‘intuitive invariantists’ – i.e. most of us initially have the intuition that ‘knows’ is univocal – defenders of the ambiguity theory need to offer an explanation for the semantic blindness present if ‘knows’ is in fact ambiguous. This paper is (...)
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  • I—Hallvard Lillehammer: Moral Testimony, Moral Virtue, and the Value of Autonomy.Hallvard Lillehammer - 2014 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 88 (1):111-127.
    According to some, taking moral testimony is a potentially decent way to exercise one's moral agency. According to others, it amounts to a failure to live up to minimal standards of moral worth. What's the issue? Is it conceptual or empirical? Is it epistemological or moral? Is there a ‘puzzle’ of moral testimony; or are there many, or none? I argue that there is no distinctive puzzle of moral testimony. The question of its legitimacy is as much a moral or (...)
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  • The Moral Fixed Points: New Directions for Moral Nonnaturalism.Terence Cuneo & Russ Shafer-Landau - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 171 (3):399-443.
    Our project in this essay is to showcase nonnaturalistic moral realism’s resources for responding to metaphysical and epistemological objections by taking the view in some new directions. The central thesis we will argue for is that there is a battery of substantive moral propositions that are also nonnaturalistic conceptual truths. We call these propositions the moral fixed points. We will argue that they must find a place in any system of moral norms that applies to beings like us, in worlds (...)
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  • Evolutionary Debunking Arguments in Ethics.Andreas Lech Mogensen - 2014 - Dissertation, University of Oxford
    I consider whether evolutionary explanations can debunk our moral beliefs. Most contemporary discussion in this area is centred on the question of whether debunking implications follow from our ability to explain elements of human morality in terms of natural selection, given that there has been no selection for true moral beliefs. By considering the most prominent arguments in the literature today, I offer reasons to think that debunking arguments of this kind fail. However, I argue that a successful evolutionary debunking (...)
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  • Recent Work on Ethical Realism.William J. FitzPatrick - 2009 - Analysis 69 (4):746-760.
    Introduction: characterizing ethical realismIt is useful to begin a survey of recent work on ethical realism with a look at current disputes over what makes a theory of ethics count as ‘realist’ in the first place. Nearly all characterizations of ethical realism include some version of the following two core claims: Ethical discourse is assertoric and descriptive: ethical claims purport to state ethical facts by attributing ethical properties to people, actions, institutions, etc., and are thus true or false depending on (...)
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  • The Supervenience Challenge to Non-Naturalism.Pekka Väyrynen - 2017 - In Tristram McPherson & David Plunkett (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Metaethics. Routledge. pp. 170-84.
    This paper is a survey of the supervenience challenge to non-naturalist moral realism. I formulate a version of the challenge, consider the most promising non-naturalist replies to it, and suggest that no fully effective reply has yet been given.
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  • Unifying Moral Methodology.Tristram McPherson - 2012 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 93 (4):523-549.
    This article argues that the best way to pursue systematic normative ethical theorizing involves metaethical enquiry. My argument builds upon two central claims. First, I argue that plausible metaethical accounts can have implications that can help to resolve the methodological controversies facing normative ethics. Second, I argue that metaethical research is at least roughly as well supported as normative ethical research. I conclude by examining the implications of my thesis. Inter alia, it shows that the common practice of engaging in (...)
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  • The Meta-Ethics of Normative Ethics (PHD, 2011).Greg Scorzo - 2011 - Dissertation, University of Nottingham
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  • The Intelligibility of Moral Intransigence: A Dilemma for Cognitivism About Moral Judgment.Richard Rowland - 2018 - Analysis 78 (2):266-275.
    Many have argued that various features of moral disagreements create problems for cognitivism about moral judgment, but these arguments have been shown to fail. In this paper, I articulate a new problem for cognitivism that derives from features of our responses to moral disagreement. I argue that cognitivism entails that one of the following two claims is false: a mental state is a belief only if it tracks changes in perceived evidence; it is intelligible to make moral judgments that do (...)
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  • Projection, Indeterminacy and Moral Skepticism.Hallvard Lillehammer - 2017 - In Diego Machuca (ed.), Moral Skepticism: New Essays. New York, USA: Routledge.
    According to moral error theory, morality is something invented, constructed or made; but mistakenly presents itself to us as if it were an independent object of discovery. According to moral constructivism, morality is something invented, constructed or made. In this paper I argue that constructivism is both compatible with, and in certain cases explanatory of, some of the allegedly mistaken commitments to which arguments for moral skepticism appeal. I focus on two particular allegations that are sometimes associated with moral skepticism. (...)
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  • Working on the Inside: Ronald Dworkin's Moral Philosophy. [REVIEW]M. H. Kramer - 2013 - Analysis 73 (1):118-129.
  • Why There Really Are No Irreducibly Normative Properties.Bart Streumer - 2013 - In David Bakhurst, Brad Hooker & Margaret Olivia Little (eds.), Thinking about Reasons: Themes from the Philosophy of Jonathan Dancy. Oxford University Press. pp. 310-336.
    Jonathan Dancy thinks that there are irreducibly normative properties. Frank Jackson has given a well-known argument against this view, and I have elsewhere defended this argument against many objections, including one made by Dancy. But Dancy remains unconvinced. In this chapter, I hope to convince him.
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  • Revisionist Responses to the Amoralism Objection: A Reply to Julia Markovits.Christopher Cowie - 2016 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 19 (3):711-723.
    Some subjectivist views of practical reasons entail that some people, in some cases, lack sufficient reasons to act as morality requires of them. This is often thought to form the basis of an objection to these subjectivist views: ‘the amoralism objection’. This objection has been developed at length by Julia Markovits in her recent book Moral Reason. But Markovits—alongside many other proponents of this objection—does not explicitly consider that her objection is premised on a claim that her opponents deny on (...)
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  • Contingency Anxiety and the Epistemology of Disagreement.Andreas L. Mogensen - 2017 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 98 (1):n/a-n/a.
    Upon discovering that certain beliefs we hold are contingent on arbitrary features of our background, we often feel uneasy. I defend the proposal that if such cases of contingency anxiety involve defeaters, this is because of the epistemic significance of disagreement. I note two hurdles to our accepting this Disagreement Hypothesis. Firstly, some cases of contingency anxiety apparently involve no disagreement. Secondly, the proposal may seem to make our awareness of the influence of arbitrary background factors irrelevant in determining whether (...)
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  • Developing a Post-Prior Taxonomy of Ethical Sentences.Patrick Clipsham - 2015 - Philosophia 43 (3):801-820.
    The main guiding assumption of this paper is that there is need for a taxonomy of ethical sentences that does not overgenerate, yet can make useful contributions to debates about certain controversial sentences . After surveying the recent literature and concluding that no extant taxonomy that satisfies both of these conditions is available to us, I propose and explain a novel taxonomy which does satisfy them. I then defend my proposal from five potential objections.
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  • A New Explanatory Challenge for Nonnaturalists.Christopher Cowie - 2014 - Res Philosophica 91 (4):661-679.
    According to some contemporary nonnaturalists about normativity , normative facts exist in an ontologically non-committing sense. These nonnaturalists face an explanatory burden. They must explain their claim that normative facts exist in such a sense. I identify criteria for an adequate explanation, and extract five distinct candidate explanations from the writings of these authors . I assess each. None is both informative and recognizable as a version of contemporary nonnaturalism. In light of this, I assess the best options for proponents (...)
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