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On What MattersVolume Two$
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Derek Parfit

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199572816

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780199572816.001.0001

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Normativity and Truth

Normativity and Truth

(p.401) 29 Normativity and Truth
On What Matters

Samuel Scheffler

Oxford University Press

This chapter looks at the philosophical dimensions of normativity and truth. It first considers Allan Gibbard's Expressivist account of rationality. According to Gibbard, his aim is to explain ‘what rational means’. But Gibbard does not directly answer this question. There is, he claims, no such property as that of being rational. Since that is so, we cannot explain the word ‘rational’ by describing what it is for something to be rational. Like Naturalism, Gibbard's Expressivism makes it impossible to ask certain important questions. In his account of the word ‘matters’, Richard Hare denies that anything could matter. According to a third argument for Non-Cognitivism, normative truths would not really be normative, since no truth could answer a normative question. That is not so. Only truths could answer such questions.

Keywords:   normativity, truth, Allan Gibbard, rationality, Expressivism, Richard Hare, Non-Cognitivism, normative truths

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