morality-objective   32

Richard McCarty, review - Kenneth Westphal, Hume and Kant Reconstruct Natural Law: Justifying Strict Objectivity without Debating Moral Realism (2016) | Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews, July 2016
Published: July 20, 2016

Kenneth R. Westphal, How Hume and Kant Reconstruct Natural Law: Justifying Strict Objectivity without Debating Moral Realism, Oxford University Press, 2016, 252pp., $65.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780198747055. - Reviewed by Richard McCarty, East Carolina University - gives high marks for way he approaches history of philosophy and current relevance, though thinks he's unfair to Hume and very untidy in how he applies his version of Kant - comment about re Pufendorf as predecessor to Hume's approach is useful - see quote and cite
books  kindle-available  intellectual_history  17thC  18thC  moral_philosophy  natural_law  morality-objective  morality-conventional  moral_sentiments  morality-divine_command  obligation  constructivism  contractualism  Hume-ethics  Kant-ethics 
july 2016 by dunnettreader
(107) NOW Published: How Hume
How Hume and Kant Reconstruct Natural Law: Justifying Strict Objectivity  without Debating Moral Realism, Clarendon Press (2016)
Front matter including both overview TOC and very detailed TOC plus introductory chapter -- He explains in the intro how both Hume and Kant (via Rousseau) pursued "moral constructivist" approaches using a (modified) "natural law" framework - after Hume had successfully attacked weaknesses in traditional approach to natural law. Notes that "justice" traditionally one of the 2 branches of moral philosophy (the other ethics). He's especially concerned with failure of "business ethics " as cause of financial crisis and Great Recession - but "business ethics" meaningless without a framework of "Justice." His target audience includes lawyers and legal/jurisprudence students and scholars - he thinks legal positivism and legal realism has run out of steam. He returns to accountancy standards in final chapter. -- pdf is the same material as kindle sample -- downloaded via iPhone to DBOX
books  legal_system  constructivism  morality-objective  justice  legal_theory  norms  accountability  legal_realism  18thC  norms-business  downloaded  moral_sentiments  moral_economy  jurisprudence  morality-conventional  legal_positivism  accounting  moral_realism  moral_psychology  Hume  kindle-available  natural_law  moral_philosophy  morality  Kant 
july 2016 by dunnettreader
Louis Pinto - Le débat sur les sources de la morale et de la religion (2004) - Cairn.info
Après la Grande Guerre, le ralliement d’une partie de la droite conservatrice à un régime désormais doté d’une légitimité guerrière et patriotique a pour effet de modifier sensiblement la définition des vertus républicaines jusqu’alors associée à l’alliance entre la démocratie et la science, qui caractérise le durkheimisme aussi bien que l’idéologie laïque. Cette évolution se reflète en partie dans le champ philosophique : dans le livre Les Deux sources de la morale et de la religion (1932), Bergson entend se situer sur les terrains de prédilection de la sociologie durkheimienne. Les oppositions majeures de sa métaphysique se trouvent appliquées à la société, la célèbre opposition entre le « clos » et l’« ouvert » permettant de renvoyer les sociologues du côté du légalisme et de l’utilitarisme étroits, et d’attribuer des qualités nobles et novatrices à des « héros ». On s’intéresse ici à la riposte d’Albert Bayet qui est simultanément celle d’un professeur rationaliste défendant l’héritage des Lumières, celle d’un sociologue d’inspiration durkheimienne et celle d’un militant de la laïcité non résigné à se voir dépouillé de valeurs comme la générosité et l’enthousiasme. Après avoir contesté aussi bien la notion de morale ouverte que l’individualisme métaphysique, il montre le lien entre les prises de position théoriques et leurs conséquences politiques.
cosmology  comparative_religion  cultural_authority  spirituality  intelligentsia  Durkheim  evolution-as-model  sociology_of_knowledge  morality-conventional  Bergson  psychology  utilitarianism  downloaded  political_culture  phenomenology  James_William  social_theory  declinism  France  social_sciences  entre_deux_guerres  irrationalism  morality-divine_command  social_order  article  intellectual_history  politics-and-religion  conservatism  morality-objective 
february 2016 by dunnettreader
Muel-Dreyfus - La rééducation de la sociologie sous le régime de Vichy (2004) - Cairn.info
Les polémiques contre la sociologie durkheimienne ont une longue histoire qui remonte aux attaques contre la Nouvelle Sorbonne et à l’affaire Dreyfus. En ce sens, elles font partie de l’« inconscient d’école » propre à l’univers académique français dont ce qu’on pourrait appeler l’« inconscient anti-sociologique » est une des composantes. Leur réactivation sous le régime de Vichy tient à la conjonction de plusieurs facteurs : la mise en œuvre d’une politique scolaire conservatrice qui assimile sociologie/pédagogie/« esprit primaire » dans sa condamnation de l’école républicaine ; la reconquête d’une influence de l’enseignement libre qui vitupère la morale laïque inspirée par la sociologie ; l’expansion d’une science sociale réduite à l’expertise au service de l’ordre moral – psychosociologie de la famille et sociobiologie des « inadaptations » notamment. Ces courants différents ont en commun de refuser toute idée d’historicisation et de détermination sociale des faits, des institutions, des croyances et des destins collectifs ou individuels au profit de différentes formes de naturalisation du social et de différentes idéologies du « don naturel » dont la convergence en période de crise, propice au retour de la raison mythique, impose l’idée d’une éternité de cette vision du mon
conservatism  morality-objective  Vichy  social_order  norms  France  downloaded  article  social_sciences  Catholics-and-politics  Durkheim  intellectual_history  sociology_of_knowledge  20thC  hierarchy  cultural_authority  education  19thC  laïcité  cultural_history  social_theory  political_culture 
february 2016 by dunnettreader
Odile Henry and Hervé Serry, « La sociologie, enjeu de lutes. » (2004)
Henry Odile, Serry Hervé, « La sociologie, enjeu de lutes. », Actes de la recherche en sciences sociales 3/2004 (no 153) , p. 5-10 URL : www.cairn.info/revue-actes-de-la-recherche-en-sciences-sociales-2004-3-page-5.htm. DOI : 10.3917/arss.153.0005. Downloaded via iPhone to DBOX
19thC  article  progress  morality-conventional  intellectual_history  pre-WWI  Catholics-and-politics  social_theory  social_sciences  anticlerical  relativism  morality-objective  ultramontane  France  downloaded  entre_deux_guerres  republicanism  Fin-de-Siècle  Durkheim  laïcité  morality-divine_command  rationalist 
february 2016 by dunnettreader
Brian Leiter - The Death of God and the Death of Morality [Nietzsche] :: SSRN - September 16, 2015
University of Chicago -' Nietzsche famously proclaimed the "death of God," but in so doing it was not God's death that was really notable -- Nietzsche assumes that most reflective, modern readers realize that "the belief in the Christian god has become unbelievable" (GS 343) -- but the implications of that belief becoming unbelievable, namely, "how much must collapse now that this faith has been undermined," in particular, "the whole of our European morality" (GS 343). What is the connection between the death of God and the death of morality? I argue that Nietzsche thinks the death of God will undermine two central aspects of our morality: its moral egalitarianism, and its belief in moral responsibility and warranted guilt. I offer an account of how Nietzsche sees the connections, and conclude with some skeptical considerations about whether Nietzsche was right that atheism would, in fact, undermine morality. -- Number of Pages in PDF File: 25 -- Keywords: Nietzsche, theism, morality -- downloaded pdf to Note
paper  SSRN  moral_philosophy  religious_belief  religious_culture  19thC  Nietzsche  theism  atheism  God-existence  moral_psychology  morality-Nietzche  morality-divine_command  morality-Christian  morality-conventional  morality-objective  Kant-ethics  egalitarian  guilt  norms  obligation  responsibility  free_will  downloaded 
october 2015 by dunnettreader
Brian Leiter, review - Christian Emden, "Nietzsche's Naturalism: A Critical Assessment" :: SSRN - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews, July 22, 2015
I review and evaluate the intellectual historian Christian Emden's recent book Nietzsche's Naturalism: Philosophy and the Life Sciences in the Nineteenth Century (Cambridge University Press, 2014). Topics addressed include: the meaning of naturalism; the relationship between substantive and methodological versions of naturalism and physicalism and other reductionisms; the role of Kant and NeoKantians like Lange and Helmholtz in Nietzsche's philosophy; the actual role of the life sciences in Nietzsche's naturalism; and what is involved in a naturalistic account of normativity. --PDF File: 12 pgs --- Keywords: Nietzsche, Kant, Lange, naturalism, physicalism -- downloaded pdf to Note
books  reviews  intellectual_history  19thC  German_scholars  Nietzsche  naturalism  materialism-19thC  Kant  neo-Kantian  Lange_FA  biology  Helmholtz  normativity  moral_philosophy  moral_psychology  morality-objective  human_nature  downloaded 
october 2015 by dunnettreader
Nicola Lacey - Jurisprudence, History, and the Institutional Quality of Law (Symposium - Jurisprudence and (Its) History) | Virginia Law Review - 101 Va. L. Rev. 919 (2015)
A cri de coeur for putting legal theory and history back together with social theory and empirical social sciences,. -- In the early part of my career, legal history and the history of legal ideas were closed books to me, as I made my way in a field of criminal law scholarship dominated by doctrinal scholarship and by concept-focused philosophical analysis of the foundations of criminal law. These 2 very different paradigms have 1 big thing in common: They tend to proceed as if the main intellectual task is to unearth the deep logic of existing legal doctrines, not infrequently going so far as to read them back onto history, as if things could never have been other than they are. (..)I have increasingly found myself turning to historical resources (1) [to examine] the contingency of particular legal arrangements, and (2) ...to develop causal and other theses about the dynamics which shape them and hence about the role and quality of criminal law as a form of power in modern societies. So, in a sense, I have been using history in support of an analysis driven primarily by the social sciences. (..) it is no accident that all of the great social theorists, from Marx to Foucault via Weber, Durkheim, and Elias, ..have incorporated significant historical elements into their interpretations .... Indeed, without the diachronic perspective provided by history (or the perspective offered by comparative study) we could have no critical purchase on social theory’s characterizations of or causal hypotheses about the dynamics of social systems. Hence, (...) my boundless gratitude to the historians whose meticulous research makes this sort of interpretive social theory possible). -- Lacey is not over-dramatizing -- see the "commentary" from a "legal philosopher" who believes the normative basis of criminal responsibility can be investigated as timeless "moral truths". -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  social_theory  historical_sociology  historical_change  institutions  institutional_change  philosophy_of_law  philosophical_anthropology  philosophy_of_social_science  jurisprudence  legal_theory  analytical_philosophy  concepts  morality-conventional  morality-objective  criminal_justice  responsibility  mind  human_nature  norms  power-asymmetric  power-symbolic  power  Neoplatonism  neo-Kantian  a_priori  historiography  intellectual_history  political_philosophy  political_culture  moral_philosophy  evidence  mental_health  social_order  epistemology  epistemology-moral  change-social  change-intellectual  comparative_law  comparative_anthropology  civil_liberties  women-rights  women-property  rights-legal  rights-political  access_to_services  discrimination  legal_culture  legal_system  legal_reasoning  Foucault  Marx  Weber  Durkheim  metaethics  downloaded 
july 2015 by dunnettreader
Kimberly Kessler Ferzan - Of Weevils and Witches: What Can We Learn from the Ghost of Responsibility Past? A Commentary on Lacey's "Jurisprudence, History, and the Institutional Quality of Law" | Virginia Law Review - 101 Va. L. Rev. 947 (2015)
Lacey's article (..) criticizes the scholarship on criminal responsibility for being too concerned with “its conceptual contours and moral foundations,” “rather than with what it is for[:] its social roles, meaning, and functions.” Here is what she is arguing against. There are theorists, myself included, who think of questions of responsibility in philosophical terms. These moral truths are not socially or historically contingent; they are constant questions to which we seek answers. (..) In some ways, this is a (boring) methodological debate. What I care about as responsibility is not what she cares about as responsibility. -- YIKES -- Apart from the travesty of equating legal norms with "moral truths," this looks like moral realism run amok -- the questions may be "constant" but who gets to frame the Qs, what values are doing the framing (blood money, retribution, restitution, prevention, hierarchy reinforcement, group purification), what anthropology and epistemology implicitly govern the framing (universal depravity, trial by ordeal, women's testimony is unreliable?), the defined criteria (lower orders don't have honor they can defend, husbands can't commit rape), how criteria are to be applied, by whom (civil vs religious authority, manor courts vs king's law, lie detector operators, NSA algorithms?) -- "Philosophical" inquiry is limited to *a priori* concerns, and "philosophical" answers are limited to eternal Platonic "moral truths". But if normative Qs & As are by definition not contingent on changing institutions and social assumptions re behavior, what's's the foundation for her inquiry process? Armchair "fine-grained" intuitions re "mental states"? So do we get new "moral truths" along with the each new neuroscience study? "Proof there's no free will!"="moral truth" (let everybody out of jail?) and next month "Latest study finds the free will spot"=oops, new eternal "moral truth" (can we test it like DNA?) -- Analytic philosophy rediscovering Aristotelian categories is bad enough, but analytic neo-Platonic anthropology gets me actively hostile, and it's even more absurd if we're talking about criminal law -- didn't download
article  analytical_philosophy  a_priori  moral_philosophy  morality-objective  jurisprudence  criminal_justice  biocultural_evolution  human_nature  moral_psychology 
july 2015 by dunnettreader
Steve Shapin - The Virtue of Scientific Thinking | Boston Review - Jan 2015
scientific reeearch may not make you more vitruous, or scientists as a group better people, but the disenchantment (severing assumed link between divine design of the cosmos and our ability to learn more and better understand how man fits in) described hy Weber in Vocation priduces a few worrisome trends. One is the hubris of "playing God" scientism, The Sam Harris and Steve Pinker types that think science can explain enough about hiw humans got to whete we are and how we function in modernity to be philosopher-kings on defining moral values and how our political and social structures should operate for what ends. The other disturbing consequence of cutting the link is the loss of discipline via internalized norms of the religious and miral worth of disinyetested inquiry. As profit and funding increasingly drive all levels of scientific research, and the rnds are increasingly narrowed to technology that can be exploited for profit or power (or both in the military-industrial-( academia) complex, what's to distinguish scientists from bankers. The foundation of trust in scientific results is at extreme risk. The only positive, which ashapin doesn't drvelop, is scepticism re the trustworthiness of the scientific enterprise may threaten the future of the planet via climate change, but few will be eager to put their trust in tge claims of the candidates nominating themselves as philosopher-kings.
Social_Darwinism  Pocket  cosmology  18thC  morality  virtue  scientism  post-WWII  moral_philosophy  17thC  21stC  19thC  history_of_science  mioitary-industrial_complex  20thC  cultural_history  Cold_War  morality-objective  curiosity  is-ought  natural_theology  norms  Reformation  intellectual_history  sociology_of_knowledge  morality-conventional 
february 2015 by dunnettreader
Scott Hershovitz - The End of Jurisprudence :: SSRN - Oct 2014
Via Brian Tamanaha -- Scott Hershovitz, University of Michigan Law School -- Yale Law Journal, Forthcoming -- For more than forty years, jurisprudence has been dominated by the Hart-Dworkin debate. The debate starts from the premise that our legal practices generate rights and obligations that are distinctively legal, and the question at issue is how their content is determined. Positivists say that their content is determined ultimately or exclusively by social facts. Anti-positivists say that moral facts must play a part in determining their content. In this Essay, I argue that the debate rests on a mistake. Our legal practices do not generate rights and obligations that are distinctively legal. At best, they generate moral rights and obligations, some of which we label legal. I defend this view by drawing analogies with other normative practices, like making promises, posting rules, and playing games. And I try to explain why it looks like legal practices generate distinctively legal rights and obligations even though they do not. I conclude with some thoughts about the questions jurisprudence should pursue in the wake of the Hart-Dworkin debate. -- Number of Pages: 63 -- Keywords: jurisprudence, H.L.A. Hart, Ronald Dworkin, Hart-Dworkin Debate, legal positivism, anti-positivism, philosophy of law
paper  SSRN  philosophy_of_law  jurisprudence  Hart  Dworkin  judiciary  legal_theory  legal_culture  legal_realism  legal_reasoning  sociology_of_law  normativity  moral_philosophy  morality-conventional  morality-objective  legal_validity  rights-political  rights-legal  natural_law  Wittgenstein  downloaded  EF-add 
january 2015 by dunnettreader
Law's Evolution and Law as Custom by William A. Edmundson :: SSRN
William A. Edmundson, Georgia State University College of Law -- 51 San Diego L. Rev. (December 2014, Forthcoming). -- Georgia State University College of Law, Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2014-15 -- Legal discourse centrally involves a family of normative expressions – “obligation,” “right,” “permission,” and so on – whose surface grammar parallels that of moral discourse. Is the normativity of legal discourse then a moral normativity? Or is it a distinct type of normativity altogether? (..) Custom is among the sources of law. That much is agreed. But custom can also be law, independently of promulgation, or so many believe. (..) Insofar as a customary norm is (or becomes) a legal norm, does it manifest (or acquire) a different kind of normativity? Or does its original normativity contribute to the normativity of law? Another set of questions has to do with custom as a condition of legal validity. [Different positions of Kelsen and Hart] I will explore the hypothesis that every legally normative utterance resolves into one expressing (a) custom-implicating moral normativity, (b) custom-extending moral normativity, or (c) normativity “in the manifesto sense” (to enlist a phrase of Joel Feinberg’s). If this is correct, there is no such thing as a distinctively legal brand of normativity. -- No. Pages: 30 -- Keywords: legal theory, legal philosophy, philosophy of law, normativity, norm, custom, validity, moral, desuetudo, moral philosophy -- downloaded pdf to Note
paper  SSRN  philosophy_of_law  jurisprudence  legal_history  legal_theory  legal_culture  sociology_of_law  legal_realism  legal_reasoning  normativity  moral_philosophy  morality-conventional  morality-objective  legal_validity  norms  custom  customary_law  downloaded  EF-add 
january 2015 by dunnettreader
Kenan Malik - THE DEATH OF GOD AND THE FALL OF MAN | Pandaemonium July 2014
Transcript of talk for Institute of Ideas -- The moral vision of modernity may have been, in other words, nourished by the crumbling of the God-ordained order. It was – it had to be – however, also rooted in faith, but a faith of a different kind – faith that humans were capable of acting rationally and morally without guidance from beyond. It was through the 19thC that religious faith truly began to crumble. But it was also in the 19thC that faith in the human capacity to act without God began also to erode. The optimism that had once suffused the humanist impulse began to ebb away and there began to develop a much darker view of what it meant to be human. By the late 19thC European societies came to experience both a crisis of faith and a ‘crisis of reason’, the beginnings of a set of trends that were to become highly significant in the 20thC – the erosion of Enlightenment optimism, a disenchantment with ideas of progress, a disbelief in concepts of truth, the growth of a much darker view of human nature. -- The death of God, in other words, went hand in hand with what we might call, if we were to continue to use religious symbolism, the Fall of Man. And the Fall of Man transformed the meaning of the Death of God. God is a metaphor for the desire for an authority beyond ourselves to frame our existence and guide our lives, the death of God for the insistence on acting without guidance from beyond. There are two aspects to the death of God. The decline of religious belief and the growth of a new faith in the capacity of humans to act without guidance from beyond. The first has always been overstated. The second has always been undervalued. - frames talk around Anscombe and MacIntyre
intellectual_history  religious_history  cultural_history  18thC  19thC  20thC  morality-Christian  religious_belief  ancient_philosophy  ancient_Greece  pagans  gods-antiquity  monotheism  teleology  human_nature  morality-conventional  morality-objective  progress  Enlightenment  Fin-de-Siècle  humanism  anti-humanism  Counter-Enlightenment  political_philosophy  reason  Anscombe  MacIntyre  tradition  identity  autonomy  individualism  community  communitarian  social_order  change-social  historical_change  historicism  EF-add 
august 2014 by dunnettreader
Michael LeBuffe - SPINOZISTIC PERFECTIONISM | JSTOR: History of Philosophy Quarterly, Vol. 27, No. 4 (OCTOBER 2010), pp. 317-333
Perfectionism seems to imply simply capable of improvement -- explains Spinoza's Ethics as differing from the virtue ethics sort as not based on something like the essence of humans -- the article gives an outline of what he thinks are the attractive features of Spinoza's moral_philosophy disentangled from some of the more obscure or less plausible parts of Spinoza's system, while recognizing that since Spinoza is a super systematic philosopher, some of his metaphysical concepts are key to his moral_philosophy, which LeBuffe attempts to spell out -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  jstor  intellectual_history  17thC  20thC  21stC  moral_philosophy  moral_psychology  human_nature  virtue_ethics  virtue  good  hedonistic  happiness  improvement  perfectibility  Spinoza  morality-conventional  morality-objective  perspectivism  bibliography  downloaded  EF-add 
august 2014 by dunnettreader
Brian Leiter - Objectivity, Morality and Adjudication :: SSRN In OBJECTIVITY IN LAW AND MORALS, Brian Leiter, Cambridge University Press, 2001
Two familiar features of Dworkin's theory of adjudication generate a strange predicament. Dworkin maintains that most cases, including most "hard" cases, have "right answers." Yet he also argues that to discover that right answer, judges must avail themselves of moral considerations and moral argument: a party's rights follow from the principle which explains some significant portion of the prior institutional history and provides the best justification for that institutional history as a matter of political morality. Yet if morality is, as many seem to think, "subjective" in some sense, then there may be as many right answers as a matter of morality as there are judges and thus, consequently, no single right answer as a matter of law. Dworkin's response asks us to distinguish between sensible, but defeasible, "internal" attacks on the objectivity of morality, from unintelligible, and irrelevant, "external" attacks on the objectivity of morality. Dworkin's internal/external distinction may be usefully recast as two competing paradigms of objectivity. ... by the "Naturalistic Conception," objectivity in any domain must be understood on the model of the natural sciences, whose objects of study are objective in the sense of being "mind-independent" and causally efficacious. The "Non-Naturalistic Conception," by contrast, denies that the type of objectivity found in the natural sciences is the relevant type of objectivity to aspire to in all domains. Dworkin's version of Non-Naturalism bears a striking similarity to John McDowell's. I conclude that neither version provides an adequate account of objectivity: they fail to explain basic intuitions about objectivity (even in ethics), as well as leaving us with a picture of the "objectivity" of ethics that would, in fact, be quite congenial to the non-cognitivism that both McDowell and Dworkin purport to have left behind. -- Number of Pages in PDF File: 42
books  SSRN  philosophy_of_law  moral_philosophy  metaethics  morality-objective  objectivity  legal_validity  naturalism  epistemology-moral  reason-passions  reasons  reasons-internalism  reasons-externalism  judiciary  bibliography  EF-add 
july 2014 by dunnettreader
Jeremy Waldron - What are Moral Absolutes Like? (2011) :: SSRN
NYU School of Law, Public Law Research Paper No. 11-62 -- This paper (originally presented as the Harvard Review of Philosophy Annual Guest Lecture in April 2011) explores the challenges involved in stating, characterizing and defending moral absolutes. The first part of the paper looks at the formulation of moral absolutes: must we assume that they are simple, directly prescriptive or prohibitive, not loaded with thick moral terms (as in "Do not kill the innocent"), etc? The paper compares the formulation of moral absolutes with the formulation of legal absolutes. And it considers some philosophical work on the subject, by Anscombe, Hare, Kant, and Finnis. The second part of the paper examines the ways in which moral absolutes – such as the rule against torture – deal with the burden of the humanitarian considerations arrayed against them in e.g. "ticking bomb" hypotheticals. ...the most powerful challenge is that posed by Bentham ... who imagined that torturing one person may be the only way to save hundreds of people from being tortured. -- ...opponents of torture have made things too easy for themselves in just focusing on how bad (depraved, brutal, violative, etc.) torture really is. ..., the paper indicates a number of possible lines of inquiry – one in particular involving the idea of "tainted goods," -- and a number of other lines are explored. Along the way, the paper takes a couple of sly kicks at something called "threshold deontology." But at the end, ... much more work to be done. -- downloaded pdf to Note
paper  SSRN  philosophy_of_law  moral_philosophy  metaethics  morality-objective  rights-legal  norms  torture  Anscombe  Finnis  Kant-ethics  morality-divine_command  deontology  consequentialism  downloaded  EF-add 
july 2014 by dunnettreader
Brian Leiter - Moral Skepticism and Moral Disagreement in Nietzsche (2013) :: SSRN - Oxford Studies in Metaethics, Vol. 9 (Oxford University Press, 2014)
U of Chicago, Public Law Working Paper No. 257 -- This essay offers a new interpretation of Nietzsche's argument for moral skepticism.., an argument that should be of independent philosophical interest as well. On this account, Nietzsche offers a version of the argument from moral disagreement, but, unlike familiar varieties, it does not purport to exploit anthropological reports about the moral views of exotic cultures, or even garden-variety conflicting moral intuitions about concrete cases. Nietzsche, instead, calls attention to the single most important and embarrassing fact about the history of moral theorizing by philosophers over two millennia: namely, that no rational consensus has been secured on any substantive, foundational proposition about morality. Persistent and apparently intractable disagreement on foundational questions, of course, distinguishes moral theory from inquiry in the sciences and mathematics (perhaps in kind, certainly in degree). According to Nietzsche, the best explanation for this disagreement is that, even though moral skepticism is true, philosophers can still construct valid dialectical justifications for moral propositions because the premises of different justifications will answer to the psychological needs of at least some philosophers and thus be deemed true by some of them. The essay concludes by considering various attempts to defuse this abductive argument for skepticism based on moral disagreement and by addressing the question whether the argument "proves too much," that is, whether it might entail an implausible skepticism about a wide range of topics about which there is philosophical disagreement. -- Keywords: Nietzsche, morality, skepticism, metaethics, anti-realism -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  books  SSRN  intellectual_history  19thC  Germany  Nietzsche  moral_philosophy  morality-objective  morality-Nietzche  morality-conventional  morality-critics  scepticism  human_nature  metaethics  epistemology-moral  foundationalism  downloaded  EF-add 
july 2014 by dunnettreader
Brian Bix - Raz on Necessity (last revised 2009 ) :: SSRN - Law and Philosophy, vol. 22, pp. 537-559 (2003)
The article uses Joseph Raz's work as the starting point for a general discussion of the role of necessity and essence in jurisprudence. Analytical legal theorists commonly assert (or assume) that they are offering conceptual truths, claims regarding attributes necessarily true of all legal systems. Is it tenable to speak about necessary truths with a humanly created institution like law? Upon closer investigation, the use of necessary truths in writers like Raz and Jules Coleman clearly differs from the way such terms are used in classical metaphysics, and even in contemporary discussions of natural kind terms. Nonetheless, theorists making conceptual statements regarding law are making significant and ambitious claims that need to be defended - for example, against naturalists like Brian Leiter, who doubt the value of conceptual analysis, and normative theorists like Stephen Perry, who argue that assertions about the nature of law require value-laden moral and political choices between tenable alternatives. -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  SSRN  philosophy_of_law  legal_system  legal_theory  analytical_philosophy  concepts  metaphysics  modal_logic  possible_worlds  universalism  universals  natural_kinds  natural_law  moral_philosophy  morality-objective  morality-conventional  normativity  essence  naturalism  legal_realism  philosophy_of_language  Raz  positivism-legal  downloaded  EF-add 
july 2014 by dunnettreader
Brian Bix - Contract Rights and Remedies, and the Divergence between Law and Morality (last revised 2011) :: SSRN - Ratio Juris, Vol. 21, No. 2, pp. 194-211, June 2008
There is an ongoing debate in the philosophical and jurisprudential literature regarding the nature and possibility of Contract theory. On one hand are those who argue (or assume) that there is, or should be, a single, general, universal theory of Contract Law, one applicable to all jurisdictions and all times. On the other hand are those who assert that Contract theory should be localized to particular times and places, perhaps even with different theories for different types of agreements. This article considers one facet of this debate: evaluating the relevance of the fact that the remedies available for breach of contract can vary significantly from one jurisdiction to another. This wide variation in remedies for breach of a (contractual) promise is one central difference between promises in morality and enforceable agreements in law. The article asserts that variation of remedies strongly supports the conclusion that there is (and can be) no general, universal theory of Contract Law. -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  SSRN  philosophy_of_law  legal_system  legal_theory  legal_culture  moral_philosophy  morality-conventional  morality-objective  natural_law  contracts  constructivism  downloaded  EF-add 
july 2014 by dunnettreader

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