Richard Price on Promising: A Limited Defense

Robert J. Fogelin

in Philosophical Interpretations

Published in print April 1992 | ISBN: 9780195071627
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199833221 | DOI:
Richard Price on Promising: A Limited Defense

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This essay presents an exposition and limited defense of Richard Price's claim that the “fidelity to promises is properly a branch or instance of veracity,” i.e., the obligation to keep a promise is, for Price, an instance of our obligation to tell the truth. His general idea is this: When one makes an assertion, one is under an obligation to have one's words fit the facts. When one makes an assertion about one's own future actions (rather than simply expressing an intention concerning them), one falls under an obligation to make what one said true by acting in the stated way. Though not without difficulties, Price's account of promising is presented as a viable alternative to accounts given by H. A. Prichard and J. L. Austin.

Keywords: Austin; intentions; Price; Prichard; promise; promising

Chapter.  6925 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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