Should an understanding of the theory of evolution have any effect on meta-ethics and if so is Michael Ruse inconsistent in rejecting meta-ethical realism whilst still defending a form of practical moral realism?


Abstract
This dissertation examines the implications of seeing moral beliefs and moral behaviour as evolutionary adaptations. In particular, it discusses whether or not an evolutionary explanation of human moral behaviour should lead us to reject the idea of objective moral facts. I agree with Michael Ruse that moral behaviour can be explained in naturalistic terms. However Ruse believes that this should not lead us to reject some forms of moral realism, as morality is a shared adaptation. My arguments against this are twofold. Firstly I believe that if morality is a product of natural forces then there will be variation between individuals’ moral sense; which should give us cause to reject all forms of moral realism. My second argument is that Ruse is internally inconsistent, and he is trying to ‘sneak’ moral facts back into the picture, having previously rejected them.
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Famine, Affluence, and Morality.Peter Singer - 1972 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 1 (3):229-243.
Foundations of the Metaphysics of Morals.Immanuel Kant - 2009 - In Steven M. Cahn (ed.), Exploring Philosophy: An Introductory Anthology. Indianapolis: Oxford University Press.
Aspects of the Theory of Syntax.Ann S. Ferebee & Noam Chomsky - 1965 - Journal of Symbolic Logic 35 (1):167.
Moral Anti-Realism.Richard Joyce - 2015 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

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