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On What MattersVolume Three$
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Derek Parfit

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198778608

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198778608.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 23 October 2021

Quasi-Realist Expressivism

Quasi-Realist Expressivism

(p.165) 45 Quasi-Realist Expressivism
On What Matters

Derek Parfit

Oxford University Press

This chapter explains how, for quasi-realism to be a distinctive meta-ethical view, quasi-realists must use the word ‘true’ in some stronger, more-than-minimal sense. It demonstrates this sense through an assumption that, when we make some claims which seem to be meta-ethical, we are really making first-order, normative claims. In addition, the chapter argues that, when we believe that some act is wrong, most of us assume that our belief is, or at least might be, true. If expressivists deny that such beliefs might be true, they should become error theorists. Quasi-realist expressivists could instead claim that, when we say that some act is wrong, we both express an attitude of being against such acts, and claim that, in having this attitude, we are getting things right. If we are getting things right, such claims would be true. This wider version of quasi-realism would be one form of cognitivism.

Keywords:   quasi-realism, quasi-realist expressivism, meta-ethical views, expressivism, cognitivism, moral truth

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