Nonassertive Moral Abolitionism

Metaphilosophy 50 (4):481-502 (2019)

Authors
Jason Dockstader
University College, Cork
Abstract
Proponents of moral abolitionism, like Richard Garner, qualify their view as an â assertiveâ version of the position. They counsel moral realists and anti-realists alike to accept moral error theory, abolish morality, and encourage others to abolish morality. In response, this paper argues that moral error theorists should abolish morality, but become quiet about such abolition. It offers a quietist or nonassertive version of moral abolitionism. It does so by first clarifying and addressing the arguments for and against assertive moral abolitionism. Second, it develops novel criticisms of assertive moral abolitionism and offers nonassertive moral abolitionism in response. Third, it discusses how various metaethical views might respond to nonassertive moral abolitionism. Its basic claim is that nonassertive moral abolitionism provides superior therapeutic benefits over assertive moral abolitionism and other conserving and reforming approaches to moral discourse.
Keywords metaethics  moral abolitionism  moral antirealism  moral error theory  moral nihilism
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DOI 10.1111/meta.12368
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What Do Philosophers Believe?David Bourget & David J. Chalmers - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 170 (3):465-500.
Moral Grandstanding.Justin Tosi & Brandon Warmke - 2016 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 44 (3):197-217.
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Objectivity and Truth: You'd Better Believe It.Ronald Dworkin - 1996 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 25 (2):87-139.

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