Morally Alien Thought

Charles Travis

in Objectivity and the Parochial

Published in print October 2010 | ISBN: 9780199596218
Published online January 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191595783 | DOI:
Morally Alien Thought

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This chapter is inspired by Hilary Putnam's The Collapse of the Fact/Value Dichotomy. It follows Putnam in seeing the work of the parochial as ubiquitous in shaping our thought, including scientific thought, and thus in rejecting certain constraints on objectivity which have been used, for example, by Hume, to exclude moral discourse entirely from the domain of judgement. It argues that questions as to the thing to do, like questions as to how things stand, may have objectively correct answers, just as much where they are clearly moral questions as where they are clearly merely prudential. It sets out some general ideas of Putnam's on ‘conceptual revision’, and shows how these might apply in some clearly moral cases.

Keywords: Putnam; fact/value dichotomy; alien thought; Martian thought; introduction and elimination; alient thought; martian thought

Chapter.  14833 words. 

Subjects: Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art

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