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Essays in Moral Skepticism (Hardback)
  • Essays in Moral Skepticism (Hardback)
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Essays in Moral Skepticism (Hardback)

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£58.00
Hardback 288 Pages / Published: 28/01/2016
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Moral skepticism is the denial that there is any such thing as moral knowledge. Some moral skeptics deny that moral judgments are beliefs; some allow that moral judgments are beliefs but claim that they are all untrue; others claim that all moral judgments are unjustified. Since the publication of The Myth of Morality in 2001, Richard Joyce has explored the terrain of moral skepticism and, perhaps more than any other living philosopher, has been willing to advocate versions of this radical view. Joyce's attitude toward morality is analogous to an atheist's attitude toward religion: he claims that in making moral judgments speakers attempt to state truths (e.g., that breaking promises is usually wrong) but that the world simply isn't furnished with the properties and relations necessary to render such judgments true. Moral thinking, he argues, probably emerged as a human adaptation, but one whose usefulness derived from its capacity to bolster social cohesion rather than its ability to track truths about the world. This forms the basis of Joyce's 'evolutionary debunking argument,' according to which evidence that a certain kind of judgment can be explained with no reference to its truth may reveal those judgments to lack warrant. Essays in Moral Skepticism gathers together a dozen of Joyce's most significant papers from the last decade, following the developments in his ideas, presenting responses to critics, and charting his exploration of the complex landscape of modern moral skepticism.

Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780198754879
Number of pages: 288
Weight: 556 g
Dimensions: 241 x 161 x 22 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
[T]here is a lot to learn from this volume. Joyce writes with great clarity and his judicious treatment of complex philosophical issues is highly commendable. It is a terrific asset for both students and researchers working on metaethics to have his most influential papers collected in one volume. * Jonas Olson, International Journal for the Study of Skepticism *
One philosopher who has long taken evolutionary theory seriously is Richard Joyce. Essays in Moral Skepticism is a collection of Joyce's recent papers, and as such offers more to the specialist interested in contemporary scholarly debates * Max Hayward, Times Literary Supplement *
Joyce's book is an interesting, occasionally frustrating, massively stimulating read. The delicate contours of moral error theory, skepticisms, and related territory are mapped out here better than anywhere else. Moreover, Joyce does not skip the hard questions, while being unafraid to leave the reader hungry for more answers. It would be good reading for anyone with a passing interest. It is essential reading for anyone with anything more. Even though the essays are largely previously published, they mesh together into a cloud of views, questions, lunges and dodges that are best read together. This volume is a rare and welcome case of a collection of an author's previous work being much more than the sum of its parts. * Jack Woods, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews *

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