On Reasons, Evidence of Oughts, and Morally Fitting Motives

Philosophia 42 (2):391-403 (2014)
Authors
Andrew Jordan
Otterbein College
Abstract
In a series of papers, Stephen Kearns and Daniel Star defend the following general account of reasons: R: Necessarily, a fact F is a reason for an agent A to Φ iff F is evidence that an agent ought to Φ.In this paper, I argue that the reasons as evidence view will run afoul of a motivational constraint on moral reasons, and that this is a powerful reason to reject the reasons as evidence view. The motivational constraint is as follows: M: For some consideration C to be a moral reason for an agent to Φ it must be possible for C to figure as part of the agent’s motivation for Φing without thereby undercutting (either partially or wholly) the positive moral evaluation of the agent in acting as she does.M presents a problem for Kearns and Star’s view because there will be cases where some consideration is evidence that an agent ought to Φ, but where if an agent was motivated by that consideration the agent’s action would thereby be worse from a moral perspective for that very reason. Further, I argue that this problem will likely arise on any moral theory that evaluates the motivation of an agent as a component of assessing the moral status of acts
Keywords Moral motivation  Moral praiseworthiness  Moral reasons  Motivating reasons  Reasons as evidence  Virtue
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s11406-013-9492-8
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 35,954
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

Ethics Without Principles.Jonathan Dancy - 2004 - Oxford University Press.
Slaves of the Passions.Mark Schroeder - 2007 - Oxford University Press.
Reasons as Evidence.Stephen Kearns & Daniel Star - 2009 - Oxford Studies in Metaethics 4:215-42.
Weighing Reasons.Stephen Kearns & Daniel Star - 2013 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 10 (1):70-86.
Unprincipled Virtue.Nomy Arpaly - 2003 - The Journal of Ethics 8 (2):201-204.

View all 20 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Empathy, Shared Intentionality, and Motivation by Moral Reasons.Marion Hourdequin - 2012 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 15 (3):403 - 419.
Humean Agent-Neutral Reasons?Daan Evers - 2009 - Philosophical Explorations 12 (1):55 – 67.
Morality, Reasons, and Sentiments.Eric Vogelstein - 2011 - Philosophical Studies 155 (3):421-432.
Reasons as Evidence.Stephen Kearns & Daniel Star - 2009 - Oxford Studies in Metaethics 4:215-42.
Francis Hutcheson: Why Be Moral?Douglas R. Paletta - 2011 - Journal of Scottish Philosophy 9 (2):149-159.
Practical Reasons and Moral 'Ought'.Patricia Greenspan - 2007 - In Russell Schafer-Landau (ed.), Oxford Studies in Metaethics, vol. II. Clarendon Press. pp. 172-194.
Egoism and the Publicity of Reason: A Reply to Korsgaard.Michael Cholbi - 1999 - Social Theory and Practice 25 (3):491-517.
Are There Any Nonmotivating Reasons for Action?Noa Latham - 2003 - In Sven Walter & Heinz-Dieter Heckmann (eds.), Physicalism and Mental Causation. Imprint Academic. pp. 273.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2013-09-20

Total downloads
77 ( #85,063 of 2,293,876 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #411,560 of 2,293,876 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature