Are Any Moral Beliefs True?

Walter Sinnott-Armstrong

in Moral Skepticisms

Published in print February 2006 | ISBN: 9780195187724
Published online February 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780199786121 | DOI:
 Are Any Moral Beliefs True?

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This chapter explores moral nihilism and error theories, which hold that moral beliefs are truth-apt but never true. Arguments for such views from relativity, evolution, and epistemological, psychological, and metaphysical queerness are all explained and critically assessed. The logical and semantic coherence of moral nihilism is then defended. The result is that moral nihilism is far from proven, but remains a serious contender in moral epistemology.

Keywords: error theories; moral nihilism; moral relativity; moral relativism; evolution; queerness; coherence; moral realism; expressivism; constructivism

Chapter.  15489 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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