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Taking Morality SeriouslyA Defense of Robust Realism$
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David Enoch

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199579969

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199579969.001.0001

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The Argument from the Deliberative Indispensability of Irreducibly Normative Truths

The Argument from the Deliberative Indispensability of Irreducibly Normative Truths

(p.50) 3 The Argument from the Deliberative Indispensability of Irreducibly Normative Truths
Taking Morality Seriously

David Enoch

Oxford University Press

This chapter develops a positive argument for Robust Metanormative Realism that is modeled after indispensability arguments in the philosophy of mathematics or inferences to the best explanation more generally. It is noted that such arguments are arguments from explanatory indispensability, and then argued that if this indispensability suffices to confer respectability on ontological commitments, so does indispensability for deliberation, or deliberative indispensability. It is also emphasized that this observation is consistent with a plausible ontological parsimony requirement. A long epistemological detour then justifies the use of indispensability arguments in general — explanatory and deliberative alike. A phenomenological discussion of deliberation follows, one that supports both the claim that deliberation is the kind of project indispensability to which can ground ontological commitment, and the claim that irreducibly normative truths are indispensable for deliberation.

Keywords:   Robust Realism, indispensability arguments, inference to the best explanation, deliberation, ontological commitment, parsimony

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