Wouldn't it be sad or depressing if an error theory about morality or practical reasons were true? In this paper, I defend an extreme version of this reaction, which I'll call 'nihilistic despair' -- despair at the supposed truth of some irrealist metaethical view.
I first defend the cogency of such despair, against an argument by Guy Kahane that it is a muddle. Second, I give an account of what features of nihilism and internalism about reasons, respectively, could be depressing. Third, though it might sound a little paradoxical, I'll consider what advice we might give to someone in the grip of nihilistic despair.
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