Contextualist Solutions to Three Puzzles about Practical Conditionals<sup>1</sup>

Janice L. Dowell

in Oxford Studies in Metaethics Volume 7

Published in print June 2012 | ISBN: 9780199653492
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191741661 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Studies in Metaethics

Contextualist Solutions to Three Puzzles about Practical Conditionals1

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This chapter discusses three puzzles about practical conditionals and inferences and shows how the flexible, contextualist semantic framework for “ought”. The chapter develops elsewhere resolves all three puzzles more satisfactorily than any of its three most prominent rivals, the relativist account of Niko Kolodny and John MacFarlane (2010), the wide-scoping account of John Broome (2004), and the “trying on” account of James Dreier (2009). The chapter first introduces the puzzle cases and six desiderata for their solutions, and then shows how only flexible contextualism about “ought” is able to resolve each while satisfying all six desiderata.

Keywords: deontic modals; modals; conditionals; normative language; practical conditionals; practical inferences; modus ponens; wide-scoping; contextualism

Chapter.  14410 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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