Chapter

The Problem of Moral Knowledge

Alan Thomas

in Value and Context

Published in print July 2006 | ISBN: 9780198250173
Published online September 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780191604072 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0198250177.003.0002
 The Problem of Moral Knowledge

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This chapter discusses the philosophies of Harman and Mackie with a view to highlighting six claims of central concern: (1) whether issues of objectivity should be raised ‘reflexively’ at the meta-level of enquiry; (2) whether the best account of objectivity will essentially vindicate itself in its own terms; (3) the reducibility of moral properties figuring in moral explanations; (4) whether moral explanations are ever the best explanations of belief; (5) the appropriateness in this context of a causal theory of knowledge; and (6) whether the concepts deployed in morality are to a certain extent local or perspectival in the sense of tied in to our particular sensibilities. It is argued that the framework of minimalism about truth is the best way of prosecuting debates over objectivity.

Keywords: objectivity; Gilbert Harman; John Mackie; moral knowledge; truth

Chapter.  12377 words. 

Subjects: Metaphysics

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