Reflective Equilibrium and Moral Consistency Reasoning


Abstract
It is more than a half-century since Nelson Goodman [1955] applied what we call the Reflective Equilibrium model of justification to the problem of justifying induction, and more than three decades since Rawls [1971] and Daniels [1979] applied celebrated extensions of this model to the problem of justifying principles of social justice. The resulting Wide Reflective Equilibrium model (WRE) is generally thought to capture an acceptable way to reconcile inconsistency between an intuitively plausible general principle and an intuitively plausible judgment about a particular case. Recently a different model for reconciling moral inconsistency has emerged: Moral Consistency Reasoning [Campbell and Kumar 2012, 2013a; Kumar and Campbell 2012; Campbell 2009: 86?7; Campbell and Woodrow 2003; Wong 2002]. MCR applies when two moral judgments give opposing assessments of (what appear to be) relevantly similar particular cases. Though WRE and MCR are strikingly different, each arguably captures a rationally acceptable method for reconciling moral inconsistency. Moreover, as will be shown, they function in complementary ways. Are they parts of a more comprehensive model of moral reasoning in the face of inconsistency that would explain the attractions of each? This essay first spells out the relevant differences between the models and then formulates a more general model of moral reasoning in the face of inconsistency. ?1 reviews the emergence of Goodman's model that he offers in the spirit of epistemology naturalized, almost a decade before Quine coined the term [1969a]. ?2 analyses six salient features of WRE to be compared with six contrasting features of MCR in ?3. ?4 presents the general model
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DOI 10.1080/00048402.2013.833643
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References found in this work BETA

Two Dogmas of Empiricism.Willard V. O. Quine - 1951 - Philosophical Review 60 (1):20–43.
Fact, Fiction and Forecast.NELSON GOODMAN - 1955 - Harvard University Press.

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Citations of this work BETA

Honor and Moral Revolution.Victor Kumar & Richmond Campbell - 2016 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 19 (1):147-59.
Reflective Equilibrium and Moral Objectivity.Sem de Maagt - 2017 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 60 (5):443-465.

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