Res Publica 23 (1):23-42 (2017)

Authors
Kevin Vallier
Bowling Green State University
Abstract
Stephen Darwall’s moral theory explains moral obligation by appealing to a “second-person” standpoint where persons use second-person reasons to hold one another accountable for their moral behavior. However, Darwall claims obligations obtain if and only if hypothetical persons endorse them, despite tying the second-person standpoint to our real-world moral practices. Focus on hypothetical persons renders critical elements of his account obscure. I solve this problem by distinguishing two ideas quietly working in tandem, the hypothetical endorsement of moral norms and the hypothetical recognition of these norms. Hypothetical endorsement is a plausible source of normativity; hypothetical recognition is not. A more plausible account of second-person normativity must combine hypothetical endorsement with actual recognition. I term these alternative conceptions justification and easy publication. To combine justification and easy publication in an account of moral obligation, second-person normativity should be applied first to rules. Following other moral philosophers, I introduce the concept of a “social-moral” rule into an account of moral obligation. Social-moral rules acquire normative force when they are justified for and easily published by the relevant moral community. I conclude that a rule-centric account of second-personality is superior to Darwall’s reason-centric account.
Keywords Normative reasons  Second-person reasons  Moral rules  Darwall
Categories (categorize this paper)
ISBN(s)
DOI 10.1007/s11158-015-9305-y
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 65,537
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

What We Owe to Each Other.Thomas Scanlon - 1998 - Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
The Concept of Law.Hla Hart - 1961 - Oxford University Press.
Theory of Knowledge.Roderick Milton Chisholm - 1966 - Englewood Cliffs, NJ, USA: Englewood Cliffs, N.J., Prentice-Hall.

View all 21 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Moral Testimony and its Authority.Philip Nickel - 2001 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 4 (3):253-266.
The Moral Obligations of Trust.Paul Faulkner - 2014 - Philosophical Explorations 17 (3):332-345.
Normativity and Interpersonal Reasons.Ken O'Day - 1998 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 1 (1):61-87.
Moral Normativity.Eric Vogelstein - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 165 (3):1083-1095.
Moral Dilemmas and Virtues.Robert Barrington Butcher - 1992 - Dissertation, The University of Western Ontario (Canada)
Moral Obligation: Form and Substance.Stephen Darwall - 2010 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 110 (1pt1):31-46.
Moral Accountability.Marina Oshana - 2004 - Philosophical Topics 32 (1/2):255-274.
Morality, Reasons, and Sentiments.Eric Vogelstein - 2011 - Philosophical Studies 155 (3):421-432.
Pro-Tanto Obligations and Ceteris-Paribus Rules.Danny Frederick - 2015 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 12 (3):255-266.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2015-12-25

Total views
56 ( #194,547 of 2,461,450 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
4 ( #178,452 of 2,461,450 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes