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From Morality to MetaphysicsThe Theistic Implications of our Ethical Commitments$
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Angus Ritchie

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199652518

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199652518.001.0001

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Why Take Morality to be Objective?

Why Take Morality to be Objective?

Chapter:
(p.11) 1 Why Take Morality to be Objective?
Source:
From Morality to Metaphysics
Author(s):

Angus Ritchie

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199652518.003.0002

This chapter defends our pre-philosophical commitment to moral objectivism. It is an essential prelude to the main argument, for it establishes the standard which the rest of the book will use to determine which secular accounts are ‘sufficiently’ objective. The chapter defends two distinct claims. The first is that in their practical deliberation, all human beings seek to approximate a truth which goes beyond their sentiments or the conventions of their culture. The second is that this quest is not in vain: which is to say, that humans have some capacity to attune their beliefs more closely to that moral truth, when they honestly and carefully seek it out. It draws on arguments made by David Enoch, Ronald Dworkin and Roger Crisp, and considers the case against moral realism presented by John Mackie.

Keywords:   moral objectivism, practical deliberation, moral anti-realism, ethics, Dworkin, Mackie, Crisp, Enoch

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