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The Nature of Normativity$
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Ralph Wedgwood

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199251315

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199251315.001.0001

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Conceptual Role Semantics

Conceptual Role Semantics

(p.80) 4 Conceptual Role Semantics
The Nature of Normativity

Ralph Wedgwood (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter gives an account of one normative concept — namely, the concept that is expressed by the practical ‘ought’. First, it is argued that this sort of ‘ought’ must be interpreted as a propositional operator. Then a version of ‘conceptual role semantics’ is given for this concept, modelled on a plausible sort of semantics for the logical constants. This account can explain the internalist connection between normative judgments and motivation. It can also explain the truth conditions of normative propositions: it entails a version of the ‘fitting attitude (FA) analysis’; very roughly, it ought to be that p if and only if it is correct for the relevant agent to incorporate the proposition that p into her plans about what to do at the relevant time.

Keywords:   ought, propositional operator, logical constants, internalism, truth conditions, fitting attitude analysis, correct, plans

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