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Who Knew?Responsibility Without Awareness$
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George Sher

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195389197

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195389197.001.0001

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Setting the Norms of Recognition

Setting the Norms of Recognition

Chapter:
(p.97) Seven Setting the Norms of Recognition
Source:
Who Knew?
Author(s):

George Sher (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195389197.003.0007

To say that someone should have realized that he was acting wrongly or foolishly is to imply that there is some norm that his not realizing what he was doing failed to satisfy. Because that norm must apply to anyone in the agent's situation, one question about it is how to draw the boundary between the agent and his situation. A second question, which cuts across the first, is whether the norm is merely statistical or more robustly normative. In this chapter, the first of these questions is taken up but then deferred, while the second is examined at some length. The upshot is that far from being merely statistical, the relevant norms are supplied by the very moral or prudential principles whose violation renders the acts wrong or foolish in the first place.

Keywords:   should have realized, norm, statistical, normative, moral principles, prudential principles, boundaries of the self

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