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Taking LifeThree Theories on the Ethics of Killing$
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Torbjorn Tannsjo

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780190225575

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190225575.001.0001

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(p.1) Chapter 1 Method
Taking Life

Torbjörn Tännsjö

Oxford University Press

The preliminary chapter to this book begins with a description and defence of the methodological approach used throughout this book. The vindication of the method is, in the final analysis, pragmatic in nature. While it is not known whether a comprehensible true moral theory exists in the first place, it is only through employment of the method the book advocates that whether it exists will be able to be unraveled. In order to test out the book's moral theories, the text arranges crucial thought experiments where different theories yield conflicting answers. It then confronts the answers with considered moral intuitions. The theory that gives the best explanation of the content of the considered moral intuitions gains inductive support. An intuition is considered if it has been exposed to, and survived, cognitive psychotherapy.

Keywords:   moral epistemology, moral intuition, considered moral intuition, cognitive psychotherapy, coherentism, abduction

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