Ethical neo-expressivism

In Russ Shafer-Landau (ed.), Oxford Studies in Metaethics: Volume 4. Oxford University Press. pp. 132-65 (2009)
Authors
Matthew Chrisman
University of Edinburgh
Dorit Bar-On
University Of Connecticut, Storrs
Abstract
A standard way to explain the connection between ethical claims and motivation is to say that these claims express motivational attitudes. Unless this connection is taken to be merely a matter of contingent psychological regularity, it may seem that there are only two options for understanding it. We can either treat ethical claims as expressing propositions that one cannot believe without being at least somewhat motivated (subjectivism), or we can treat ethical claims as nonpropositional and as having their semantic content constituted by the motivational attitudes they express (noncognitivism). In this paper, we argue that there is another option, which can be recognized once we see that there is no need to build the expression relation between ethical claims and motivational states of mind into the semantic content of ethical claims.
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