Revisionist Responses to the Amoralism Objection: A Reply to Julia Markovits

Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 19 (3):711-723 (2016)
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Abstract

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 first-order grounds, often as part of a socially and politically motivated revisionism about the assessment of agents and their actions. As such, the amoralism objection as she presents it misses its dialectical mark. This has interesting consequences for subjectivism—and the methodology behind it—more generally.

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Christopher Cowie
Cambridge University

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