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EpistemologyNew Essays$
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Quentin Smith

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199264933

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199264933.001.0001

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Rational Disagreement as a Challenge to Practical Ethics and Moral Theory: An Essay in Moral Epistemology

Rational Disagreement as a Challenge to Practical Ethics and Moral Theory: An Essay in Moral Epistemology

Chapter:
(p.225) 9 Rational Disagreement as a Challenge to Practical Ethics and Moral Theory: An Essay in Moral Epistemology
Source:
Epistemology
Author(s):

Robert Audi (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199264933.003.0010

Moral disagreement — roughly, disagreement about what is right or wrong — is widely considered to be both common and sufficiently resistant to rational resolution to constitute a challenge to the objectivity of ethics. This chapter distinguishes the kinds of disagreement in a way that is crucial for properly appraising both the extent and the epistemological significance of moral disagreement. It argues that certain kinds of disagreement are compatible not only with the objectivity of ethics but also with the self-evidence of a certain kind of moral principle.

Keywords:   moral disagreement, ethics, moral principles, dogmatism

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