Essentially Grounded Non-Naturalism and Normative Supervenience

Topoi:1-9 (forthcoming)
Abstract
Non-naturalism – roughly the view that normative properties and facts are sui generis and incompatible with a purely scientific worldview – faces a difficult challenge with regard to explaining why it is that the normative features of things supervene on their natural features. More specifically: non-naturalists have trouble explaining the necessitation relations, whatever they are, that hold between the natural and the normative. My focus is on Stephanie Leary's recent response to the challenge, which offers an attempted non-naturalism-friendly explanation for the supervenience of the normative on the natural by appealing to hybrid properties, the essences of which link them to both natural and sui generis normative properties in suitable ways. I argue that despite its ingenuity, Leary's solution fails. This is so, I claim, because there are no hybrid properties of the sort that her suggestion appeals to. If non-naturalists are to deal with the supervenience challenge, they will have to find another way of doing so.
Keywords Moral supervenience  Non-naturalism  Supervenience  Essence  Essentialism  Hybrid properties  Stephanie Leary  Supervenience Challenge  Moral realism
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DOI 10.1007/s11245-017-9456-x
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