Peirce's Moral “Realicism”

Rosa Maria Mayorga

in The Normative Thought of Charles S. Peirce

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print August 2012 | ISBN: 9780823242443
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780823250769 | DOI:

Series: American Philosophy (FUP)

Peirce's Moral “Realicism”

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Charles Peirce did not seem to have a consistent view regarding ethics. His occasional remarks on this subject appear to be contradictory at best and cynical at worst. As a result, many have suggested that his comments on ethics, especially those expressed in the 1898 Cambridge Conference lectures, should be dismissed or ignored. This chapter argues that Peirce's views on ethics can be best understood by comparing them to his views on scholastic realism and nominalism. When analyzed in this way, Peirce's observations on ethics can serve as the grounds for a robust moderate moral realism that can compare favorably with contemporary metaethical theories.

Keywords: ethics; scholastic realism; nominalism; moral realism

Chapter.  9438 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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