Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Truth -- Meaning -- Reality$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Paul Horwich

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199268900

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199268900.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 23 October 2019

The Motive Power of Evaluative Concepts

The Motive Power of Evaluative Concepts

Chapter:
(p.167) 9 The Motive Power of Evaluative Concepts
Source:
Truth -- Meaning -- Reality
Author(s):

Paul Horwich (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199268900.003.0009

The focus here is on the emotivist/expressivist contention that normative concepts are constituted non-cognitively, by their motivational role. This chapter defends that contention against the influential double-barreled objection (known as the Frege-Geach point) that (i) deployments of such concepts often have no motivational import, and that (ii) unless normative pronouncements express genuine beliefs (rather than mere desires) the validity of inferences amongst them cannot be accommodated. It is suggested here, in response, that that the use conception of meaning provides a general perspective from which this objection can be deflected. For we can suppose that the meaning of a primitive normative term (e.g., ‘ought’) is constituted by the tendency for certain desire-like states to causally correlate with the internal acceptance of certain sentences containing these terms (hence, with the beliefs that are expressed by those sentences). Thus (and pace Blackburn and Gibbard) we can accommodate the essential motivational import of certain normative beliefs without compromising either on their genuineness, or on the reality of the normative facts that make them true or false.

Keywords:   ought, meaning, Frege-Geach point, motivation, normative belief, use conception of meaning, normative facts, Blackburn, Gibbard, desire

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .