Mixing Values

Joseph Raz

in Engaging Reason

Published in print January 2002 | ISBN: 9780199248001
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191598272 | DOI:
 Mixing Values

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Under what conditions can one compare the strength of conflicting reasons for and against an action where they are a function of irreducibly different values that its performance manifests, contributes to, or detracts from? Two sets of conflicting reasons are incommensurable when neither is at least as weighty as the other, and so are the actions they are the only reasons for. It is argued that it is a conceptual truth that one has reason to realize value, and that the greater the value, the more stringent the reason. Moreover, belief in value explains why the action was done and makes its performance intelligible. The extent to which social practices are relevant to the existence or validity of at least some values is also explored.

Keywords: incommensurability; reasons; social practices; value

Chapter.  10047 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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