Moral Philosophy Seminar (Monday - Week 8, MT18)

Moral Philosophy Seminar

Moral Philosophy Seminar

In considering how we should act and in forming our moral beliefs, we tend to trust on our own moral faculties. How much are we entitled to trust our moral faculties? And, in particular, are we entitled to trust our own moral faculties more than those of others, for example when we encounter a moral disagreement with others? On the Asymmetric Trust view, we are generally entitled to trust our own moral faculties more than those of others. If the Asymmetric Trust view were correct, it would explain why we should remain steadfast in many moral disagreements. My aim in this paper is to argue against the Asymmetric Trust view and the support for steadfast intuitions that it is thought to provide. I will grant that moral self-trust is often epistemically and morally beneficial. But I will show that while we are entitled, on both epistemic and moral grounds, to trust our moral faculties in the absence of epistemic reasons to believe that they are reliable, we do not have either epistemic or moral reasons to trust our own moral faculties more than those of others when we have epistemic reasons to believe that they are not reliable. Since moral disagreements can give us epistemic reasons to believe that they are not reliable, I will argue, we should conclude that we are not entitled to remain steadfast in moral disagreements.

 


Members of the audience are invited to join the speaker and the convenor for drinks and dinner at a local restaurant following the talk (at their own expense). Please contact Ed Lamb in advance if you would like to attend a dinner (edward.lamb@philosophy.ox.ac.uk).

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