A wrong turn to reasons?
Much of recent metaethics, and meta-normative inquiry more generally, displays a turn to reasons. In the air wafts a confidence, even if not a definite program easily attributable to particular people, that appealing to reasons — in the normative sense in which reasons are good grounds for acting, thinking, or feeling in certain ways — will better enable us to account for various normative and evaluative phenomena than appealing to value or any other notion. This paper argues that it is hard to reconcile taking reasons as fundamental in explaining various evaluative and normative phenomena with certain explanatory demands regarding reasons themselves. Its aim is to sound a skeptical note against the confidence that turning to reasons will offer special advantages in dealing with real theoretical problems when it comes to explaining various normative and evaluative phenomena.
Väyrynen, P. (2011)., A wrong turn to reasons?, in M. Brady (ed.), New waves in metaethics, Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 185-207.
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