Does 'Ought' Still Imply 'Can'?

Philosophia 40 (4):821-828 (2012)
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According to ‘ought’ implies ‘can’ (OIC), your obligation can never be to do what you cannot do. In a recent attack on OIC, Graham has argued that intuitions about justified intervention can help us determine whether the agent whose actions we use force to prevent would have acted permissibly or not. These intuitions, he suggests, cause trouble for the idea that you can be obligated to refrain from doing what you can refrain from doing. I offer a defense of OIC and explain how non-consequentialists can accommodate his intuitions about his cases



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Clayton Littlejohn
Australian Catholic University

References found in this work

A defense of abortion.Judith Jarvis Thomson - 1971 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 1 (1):47-66.
Self-defense.Judith Jarvis Thomson - 1991 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 20 (4):283-310.
'Ought' and Ability.P. A. Graham & Peter Graham - 2011 - Philosophical Review 120 (3):337-382.
A defense of abortion.Judith Jarvis Thomson - 2009 - In Steven M. Cahn (ed.), Exploring ethics: an introductory anthology. Oxford University Press.

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