Journal of Critical Realism 18 (3):258-273 (2019)

ABSTRACTThe usual way of discussing normativity and naturalism is by running through a standard range of issues: the relations of fact and value, objectivity, reason and emotion, is and ought, and the so-called ‘naturalistic fallacy’. This is a naturalism that is virtually silent on nature. I outline an alternative approach that relates normativity to our nature as living beings, for whom specific things are good or bad for us. Our nature as evaluative beings is shown to be rooted in and emergent from this biological normativity. There is also significant downward causation, such that our brain-bodies are continually modified by our experience and thoughts. Cultures, as emergent from the affordances of our brain-bodies, create further extensive, irreducible sources of normativity, albeit ones which do not wholly escape biological normativity and can impact back on it.
Keywords naturalism  biology  normativity  flourishing  emergence
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1080/14767430.2019.1613852
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
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 and the Limits of Philosophy.Bernard Williams - 1985 - Harvard University Press.
The Theory of Moral Sentiments.Adam Smith - 1759 - Dover Publications.
After Virtue.A. MacIntyre - 1981 - Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 46 (1):169-171.

View all 35 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Introduction to the Special Issue: Normativity.Leigh Price - 2019 - Journal of Critical Realism 18 (3):221-238.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Naturalism.Geert Keil - 2008 - In Dermot Moran (ed.), The Routledge Companion to Twentieth-Century Philosophy. London: Routledge. pp. 254-307.
Semantic Normativity and Naturalism.José L. Zalabardo - 2012 - In Manuel García-Carpintero & Max Kölbel (eds.), The Continuum Companion to the Philosophy of Language. Continuum International.
Introduction: Science, Naturalism, and the Problem of Normativity.Mario de Caro & David Macarthur - 2010 - In Mario de Caro & David Macarthur (eds.), Naturalism and Normativity. Columbia University Press.
Semantic Normativity.Åsa Maria Wikforss - 2001 - Philosophical Studies 102 (2):203-26.
Nietzsche's Naturalism and Nineteenth-Century Biology.Leiter Brian - 2017 - Journal of Nietzsche Studies 48 (1):71-82.
Semantic Normativity and Naturalism.Claudine Verheggen - 2011 - Logique Et Analyse 54 (216):553-567.
Normativity in Quine's Naturalism: The Technology of Truth-Seeking? [REVIEW]Wybo Houkes - 2002 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 33 (2):251-267.
Advice for Non-Analytical Naturalists.Janice Dowell, J. L. & David Sobel - 2017 - In Simon Kirchin (ed.), Reading Parfit. Routledge. pp. 153-171.


Added to PP index

Total views
42 ( #243,452 of 2,420,320 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
21 ( #36,791 of 2,420,320 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes