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Seminars in Moral Philosophy Week 3 HT12

Event Name Seminars in Moral Philosophy Week 3 HT12
Start Date 30th Jan 2012 4:30pm
End Date 30th Jan 2012 6:30pm
Duration 2 hours

Talk by Alison Hills (Oxford) 'Cognitivism about moral judgement' to be held in the Lecture Room at the Philosophy Centre, 10 Merton Street.


What is it to make a moral judgement? There are two standard views, cognitivist and non-cognitivist, plus hybrid options according to which moral judgements have cognitivist and non-cognitivist components. In this context, cognitivism is typically defined as the following theory: “moral judgments are beliefs”. ). I will be arguing that this is a mistake. In section 2, I set out an objection to cognitivism which I call the “testimony” argument. The remainder of the paper attempts to answer this argument on behalf of a cognitivist, by arguing that moral judgements may be belief-like mental states without being beliefs. In sections 3 and 4, I introduce a moral “ulief”, a belief-like state which is related to exercised moral understanding as a moral belief is related to moral knowledge. Section 5 addresses some objections to the idea of a moral ulief. In the final section I set out new definitions of cognitivism and non-cognitivism and draw some further implications of the argument.

All philosophers are welcome to attend, and also to join the speaker for drinks after the talk, and later for dinner.

Moral Philosophy seminar webpage

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