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Chapter 11: Metaethics
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Chapter 11: Metaethics

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Ethics: Chapter 11

Ethics: Chapter 11

Published in: Education, Spiritual

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  • 1.
    • Philosophizing about ethics
    • Analyzing the terms used in ethical discourse
    • Unpacking the structure of ethical theory
    Metaethics
  • 2.
    • The theory that value statements can be defined in terms of factual statements.
    • Fact: What is signified by empirically verifiable statements.
    • Value: What is signified by an evaluation of a sentence.
    • Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethical_naturalism
  • 3.
    • The theory that moral facts exist but are not natural.
    • Moral facts are discovered by intuition.
    • The task for philosophers is to define the terms used and the source of the definition of the terms in philosophizing.
  • 4.
    • This theory holds that moral judgments do not have truth values.
    • Moral judgments are expressions of our attitudes.
    • These judgments express our feelings and help us to persuade others to act as we desire.
  • 5.
    • The ethical theory that the good or right thing to do can be known directly via the intuition.
    • G. E. Moore claims that a concept like the ‘Good’ is unanalyzable.
  • 6.
    • The Humean Thesis: Ought statements cannot be derived from ‘is’ statements.
    • The Platonic Thesis: Basic value terms refer to nonnatural properties.
    • The Cognitive Thesis: Moral statements are either true or false, which can be known.
    • The Intuition Thesis: Moral truths are discovered by intuition and are self-evident upon reflection.
  • 7.
    • Value judgments do not have truth values, they are more than mere expression of attitudes.
    • Moral judgments are universal prescriptions.
    • Moral judgments are given to guide actions.
  • 8.
    • A dependency relationship between properties or facts of one type with properties or facts of another type.
    • In metaethics, supervenience is the idea that moral properties supervene or emerge out of natural ones.
    • For example, badness comes out of pain or goodness comes out of happiness.
  • 9.
    • This principle states that if some act is wrong (or right) for one person in a situation, then it is wrong (or right) for any relevantly similar person in that kind of situation.
    • It is a principle of consistency that aims to eliminate irrelevant considerations from ethical assessments.
  • 10.
    • Principles are central to moral reasoning.
    • Principles serve as major premises in our moral arguments.
    • We acquire or learn a basic set of principles.
    • Then we learn when to use or when to subordinate those principles.
    • We choose when, where, and why to apply our specific principles.