The Nature of Normativity

Paperback | June 1, 2009

byRalph Wedgwood

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The Nature of Normativity presents a complete theory about the nature of normative thought -- that is, the sort of thought that is concerned with what ought to be the case, or what we ought to do or think. Ralph Wedgwood defends a kind of realism about the normative, according to whichnormative truths or facts are genuinely part of reality. Anti-realists often complain that realism gives rise to demands for explanation that it cannot adequately meet. What is the nature of these normative facts? How we could ever know them or even refer to them in language or thought? Wedgwood accepts that any adequate version of realism must answerthese explanatory demands. However, he seeks to show that these demands can be met - in large part by relying on a version of the idea, which has been much discussed in recent work in the philosophy of mind, that the intentional is normative - that is, that there is no way of explaining the natureof the various sorts of mental states that have intentional or representational content (such as beliefs, judgments, desires, decisions, and so on), without stating normative facts. On the basis of this idea, Wedgwood provides a detailed systematic theory that deals with the following three areas:the meaning of statements about what ought to be; the nature of the facts stated by these statements; and what justifies us in holding beliefs about what ought to be.

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The Nature of Normativity presents a complete theory about the nature of normative thought -- that is, the sort of thought that is concerned with what ought to be the case, or what we ought to do or think. Ralph Wedgwood defends a kind of realism about the normative, according to whichnormative truths or facts are genuinely part of rea...

Ralph Wedgwood is Professor of Philosophy and University Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Oxford.

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Hardcover|May 21 2016

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:320 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.01 inPublished:June 1, 2009Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199568197

ISBN - 13:9780199568192

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Table of Contents

PrefaceIntroductionPart I: The Semantics of Normative Thought and Discourse1. Thinking About What Ought to Be2. Expressivism3. Causal Theories and Conceptual Analyses4. Conceptual Role Semantics5. Context and the Logic of 'Ought'Part II: The Metaphysics of Normative Facts6. The Metaphysical Issues7. The Normativity of the Intentional8. Irreducibility and Causal Efficacy9. Non-Reductive NaturalismPart III: The Epistemology of Normative Belief10. The Status of Normative Intuitions11. Disagreement and the A Priori12. ConclusionBibliography

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"Wide-ranging, systematic, and provocative." --Chris Alen Sula, Ethical Theory and Moral Practice