Philosophical Papers 41 (2):181 - 208 (2012)

Edmund Dain
Providence College
Abstract Suppose one is persuaded of the merits of noncognitivism in ethics but not those of expressivism: in such a case, a form of moral fictionalism, combining a descriptivist account of moral sentences with a noncognitivist account of the attitudes involved in their acceptance or rejection, might seem an attractive alternative. This paper argues against the use of moral fictionalism as a strategy for defending noncognitivism in ethics. It argues, first, that the view is implausible as it stands and, second, that it does not enjoy the benefits over standard?expressivist?noncognitivism both that it claims to enjoy and that make up the principal rationale for the view. The paper then turns to the grounds for noncognitivism itself before showing how far the criticisms developed extend to alternative forms of moral fictionalism and developing independent objections to each
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1080/05568641.2012.699172
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 69,226
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Science Without Numbers: A Defence of Nominalism.Hartry H. Field - 1980 - Princeton, NJ, USA: Princeton University Press.
Assertion.P. T. Geach - 1965 - Philosophical Review 74 (4):449-465.
Modal Fictionalism.Gideon Rosen - 1990 - Mind 99 (395):327-354.

View all 22 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

The Return of Moral Fictionalism.Nadeem J. Z. Hussain - 2004 - Philosophical Perspectives 18 (1):149–188.
Do Moral Explanations Matter?Charles Sayward - 1988 - Philosophy Research Archives 14:137-142.
Noncognitivism and Wishfulness.James Lenman - 2003 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 6 (3):265-274.
Moral Realism: A Naturalistic Perspective.Michael Devitt - 2002 - Croatian Journal of Philosophy 2 (1):1-15.
Moral Fictionalism Versus the Rest.Daniel Nolan, Greg Restall & Caroline West - 2005 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 83 (3):307 – 330.
Fictionalism and the Attitudes.Chris John Daly - 2008 - Philosophical Studies 139 (3):423 - 440.
The Autism Objection to Pretence Theories.David Liggins - 2010 - Philosophical Quarterly 60 (241):764-782.


Added to PP index

Total views
72 ( #158,407 of 2,499,685 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
5 ( #139,330 of 2,499,685 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes